One of the biggest ongoing costs that landlords face is maintenance. From end of tenancy cleaning and replacing broken furnishings to fixing a leaking roof, tenanted properties need a lot of TLC to keep them in good condition.
However, in order for landlords to make their rental businesses work, they need to keep these costs to a minimum. As we’re experts in cleaning, landlords often ask us for ideas on how to save money on home upkeep and essential works, so we thought we’d put together some of our best money-saving tips.
Find The Right Tenants
The most important factor in keeping property maintenance costs to a minimum is finding the right tenants. Ideally, you want tenants who will take pride in where they live, look after your property and let you know the minute something goes wrong.
Although there are never any guarantees, you can increase your chances of finding good tenants by using a reputable agent, asking for references from previous landlords and carrying out thorough credit checks. The more work you put it at this point, the less likely it is you’ll end up paying out for unnecessary repairs in the future.
Take A Thorough Inventory
If tenants leave a property in poor condition, the inventory will provide proof of damage and allow you to deduct money from the deposit. Make sure you have a thorough inventory taken before the new tenancy begins and ask your tenants to sign and date each page of the document.
Rent The Property Unfurnished
If a property is unfurnished, you won’t have to pay for repairs to white goods, replacement furnishings or any other issues with the property’s contents. Talk to your agent to find out exactly what tenants expect from a rented property in your local area.
Clarify The Ground Rules
In the tenancy agreement you can state exactly what you expect from the tenants renting your property. If you don’t want pets living in the property, this is where to make that clear. It’s also a good idea to state in the agreement that tenants are responsible for notifying you of any maintenance problems as soon as possible. This should help to prevent minor issues from becoming serious problems and ensure the property is well maintained for the duration of the tenancy.
Do Your Part
If you want your tenants to look after your investment, you need to do your bit too. Fix any maintenance issues as soon as you’re made aware of them and make sure the agents know you want any problems resolved as quickly as possible.
Buy Cheap, Buy Twice
Although there’s no need to buy top quality fixtures and fittings for your rental property, if you buy the cheapest products available you may well find you end up paying out again for replacement pieces in a few months time. Instead of opting for budget fixtures and fittings, spend a little more on good quality products and you may not have to replace or repair them for years to come.
Make The Garden Easy To Maintain
If your rented property comes with outside space, make it as easy to maintain as possible. Consider paving or decking the garden and plant shrubs and trees that are easy to look after.
Ask For A Large Deposit
The deposit your tenants pay is there to cover any damage or excessive wear and tear caused during the tenancy. If you think the tenants have left the home unreasonably dirty or if they’ve damaged the property, you can deduct money from the deposit to cover the cost of repairs.
Carry Out Regular Inspections
Regular inspections are essential if you want to ensure your property is being looked after. If you’re using an agent, ask them to check on the tenants every six months to ensure there aren’t any outstanding maintenance issues and that property is being kept in good condition.
Supply Cleaning Instructions
If you have specialist pieces of equipment in the property that need to be cleaned in a specific way, leave instructions for your tenants to follow. Lay out the steps clearly and concisely to ensure your fixtures and fittings are properly looked after.
By making sure tenants know exactly what’s expected from them, investing in maintenance and communicating regularly with agents and renters, you can minimise the amount you spend on looking after your property and maximise on your investment. Start talking to your tenants now to ensure your rented property is kept in tiptop condition.