As soon as you become a landlord, you might realise that it is not as easy to make money as you first thought. Rental properties can deliver a healthy additional income, but there are costs and risks associated with the lettings business.
Experienced landlords realise that things can go wrong and put measures in place to protect their investment. This means that you can survive emergencies and carry on with earning some rental income.
Here are the top four ways in which landlords can protect their rental property.
Obtain appropriate insurance
According to the Which consumer services website, a landlord insurance policy is specifically designed to cover rental properties because cover is usually available even when the property is empty, such as during void periods. This ensures that your investment is protected at all times.
Get professional support
It is unwise to do it alone, especially when you are starting out. If you do not want a letting agency to fully manage your property, you could use them as a tenant finding service. They will help perform financial checks, collect references and draw up contracts.
It is vital that you make an accurate inventory in case of any disputes. Jotting things down on a piece of paper is not enough. Property inventory software is a very useful way of recording accurate information that can be stored safely. For this task, you can use a package such as the Property Inventory Software available through Inventory Base.
Carry out all necessary safety checks
Rules and regulations have been introduced to protect the safety of tenants. It is essential that you find out which regulations apply to you. Gas safety certificates are required for all gas supplies and appliances. You might also need to get electrical safety certificates and fire certificates depending on the age and size of your property.
Be prepared for emergencies
Sometimes, natural disasters such as floods occur and there is nothing that you can do about it. However, you can ensure that there are torches or even emergency battery-operated ceiling lights at the property to assist the tenants.
Make sure that your tenants know how to turn off the gas, electricity and water should a leak or electrical fire occur. This will protect them and the property.