As the UK moves ever closer to becoming a predominantly renter’s market, those making the right moves with buy-to-let investments are reaping serious rewards. Excessive deposit demands and generally skyrocketing house prices are making it more difficult than ever for first time buyers to get on the property ladder, which for some isn’t an ideal situation but for property investors is a pure gold mine.
Of course, even with things headed the way they are there’s still no room for complacency or for approaching the idea of investment lightly. After all, not every property investment in Oxford is going to be quite as safe or profitable as the next, so it’s important to have your wits about you even when taking advantage of the current situation.
So with this in mind, here’s a quick look at seven of the most crucial and generally common-sense tips of all for those looking to make the most of Britain’s shift to housing market dominated by long-term rentals:
1 – Look For Something That Isn’t Too Dated
First of all, there’s much appeal to the idea of buying a seriously old property as it might a) be up for grabs much cheaper or b) be something of a pretty period piece. Sadly, not only are older homes generally always less attractive for rental tenants, but they’re also guaranteed to cost you more further down the line by way of repairs and maintenance. You don’t have to buy brand new, or even close to it, but at the same time try to avoid anything that’s seriously on the aged side.
2 – Buy Properties That Are In Demand
Certain types of rental properties are always in high demand and thus fly ‘off the shelves’ so to speak and generate good income. For example, there’s also strong demand for rental properties by young professionals, young couples and new families with less than abundant cash reserves. By contrast, sprawling family homes and ultra-expensive luxury rental properties are far more niche in terms of demand and can be difficult to let out long-term.
3 – Expand Your Search Area
Don’t forget that just because you live in any specific town or city does not inherently mean that you cannot buy and let out a property in pretty much any other city across the board. This is especially the case if you plan to hire professional agency to manage the property on your behalf as it’s extremely unlikely that you will need to actually be there in person more than once in a blue moon…so to speak. As such, it’s worth looking further afield and targeting where the best opportunities are, as opposed to restricting yourself to where you are based.
4 – Check Local Rental Market Health
Still on the same point, don’t fall into the assumption that just because there’s huge demand for rental properties in your own town, the same must be the case a couple of towns over. This might not be the case as all – quite often you’ll find that a distance of just a few miles can see both demand and average rent prices either plummet or spike.
5 – Consider Tenant Quality
There’s an undeniable level of appeal when it comes to the idea of buying and letting out in poorer or rundown areas where properties are cheap and pretty much everyone rents. However, it’s also important to consider the prospect of attracting problem tenants that could end up causing you more trouble than it’s worth. Think not only of the presence of tenants, but also the quality of the tenants in the area.
6 – Hide Your Interest
When looking for a property, carrying out inspections and negotiating prices, don’t ever give the seller any indication that you’re wholly in love with the place and intend to use it to make a fortune. The more they think you want it, the more they can get away with charging your for it and so probably will. Show interest by all means, but be as shrewd as possible and don’t let them see the proverbial dollar-signs in your eyes.
7 – Consider a Property Letting Service
Last but not least, it’s a good idea to side with a quality property management company from the earliest possible stage – ideally from before you even pick up the property. Not only can such services offer professional advice on picking up rental properties in the first place, but they can also help with all the legal and administrative sides of the matter and with the process of finding the right tenants. Such services aren’t free, but they are worth their weight in gold.