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4 Top tips for becoming a landlord

Becoming a landlord can not only be incredibly rewarding in terms of collecting properties to add to your portfolio, but it can also be very lucrative.

While the financial benefits can seem enticing, it's a huge responsibility to not only maintain the standard of the properties you manage but also the welfare of the tenants within them. You will need to consider a few things in terms of finance and mindset when undertaking the process of acquiring numerous houses.

  • 1. Ensure you can afford a Buy-to-Let (BTL) mortgage

You will be faced with an income assessment before undertaking a BTL mortgage, and for a good reason. The interest rates can be much higher, as can the fees for undergoing the entire process. Ensuring that you are financially secure enough to take out a mortgage that is as demanding as a buy-to-let mortgage is the first fundamental step before you begin to reap the financial rewards later on. It's advised that you keep a good credit rating and earn well over £25,000 a year to improve the likelihood of securing one.

  • 2. Listen to your tenants

If your tenants are furious with the condition of the sofas or are aggravated by a boiler that keeps breaking down, then it is time to listen. Ensuring that tenants feel listened to and that the quality of their environment matters to you too will make them far more likely to renew their contract. Feedback can be hard to hear, particularly if you thought the second-hand furniture you'd sourced was an absolute gem. However, remember what you yourself would realistically tolerate in a rented household; it's worth shelling out for some improvements.

  • 3. Always improve your curb appeal

If your tenants adore you, then it might be easy to get complacent and let the property age a little bit over time. However, letting your tenants know about necessary renovations is good for the property's overall value in the long-run. Giving the exterior a new coat of paint and keeping the garden up-to-date with contemporary trends will give your property portfolio a head-start in years to come.

  • 4. Get insured

If you could do with a bit of a financial break after the mortgage, then you might be disappointed to hear that Landlord Insurance is also a bit steeper than any current household cover you might be on. However, not only is it necessary but it's also a real budget-saver if you don't get the income you were expecting from tenants. Landlord insurance might seem like yet another expense on top of renovations and a BTL mortgage, but as with ensuring your car, electrical equipment and personal home, you'll be glad you are covered it if something were to go wrong.

There are many hurdles to tackle during the process of becoming a full-time landlord: finding a property, getting the mortgage accepted, refurbishing it to a finish you're content with and welcoming in the first tenants. While the financial rewards may have been your reason for undertaking the project, it's key to remember that at the heart of being a landlord is looking after the tenants inside.

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