Thursday 12 October 2023

How quickly will you start receiving rent?

When you first buy a rental property, you need to factor in that you won’t get the keys and instantly start receiving rent (unless you buy with tenants in-situ).

It is likely that you’ll first need to undertake some maintenance or refurbishment to the property. You will also need time to advertise the property, conduct viewings, reference the chosen tenants and complete all of the relevant paperwork and safety checks before finally moving them in and starting to receive some return on your investment.

Being pro-active can help to minimise this initial void period. I try to advertise the property as soon as I am allowed to by the seller, have confirmed the ‘earliest move-in date’ and can take representative photographs that show the property off well. 

Ideally you would conduct viewings at this stage too i.e. between exchange and completion. If that’s not possible, marketing it early still enables you to take prospective tenants names, numbers and details so that once you are in a position to conduct viewings you have a shortlist of interested parties ready to go on day one.

Letting agents or landlords with multiple properties may also have a head-start as they will often have tenants on a waiting list or who ‘missed out’ on a previous property but may find yours of interest.

It is also important to advertise the property at the correct rental price. You may even consider offering the property below the ‘going rate’ so as to attract more interest, rent the property quicker and thus minimise your initial void period on your first let (when the property is earning you nothing). 

Ideally the first batch of viewings will lead to suitable tenants who wish to rent the property. The next issue then becomes when they can move-in. It’s unusual for someone to be able to move-in immediately, as they will typically have a notice period to honour with their current landlord.

Property type can play a part here - smaller properties may be filled quicker as the tenants are naturally of a more transient nature, whereas larger family homes often come with tenants that have more commitments (and stuff to pack!) before they can move.

 In normal circumstances, if a property is advertised and a tenant is not found within a couple of weeks (not necessarily moved in, but scheduled to do so)  then I would say something is wrong - normally the price, property or marketing. One key proviso for a landlord is that the objective should always be to get the best tenants possible, not necessarily the first ones that come along. 

If you are buying a rental property and would like someone to help you find the right tenants as quickly as possible, please get in touch.

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