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Buying a holiday letting property - any advice?

(12 Posts)
midnightexpress Mon 22-Aug-11 10:00:15

We are considering buying a small cottage (in the UK) as a holiday letting business. We'd probably use it ourselves too, but the main purpose would be to try and get it to pay for itself through rentals and possibly make a small profit. I was wondering if anyone has done this, and what sort of things we should be considering.
Location would be a couple of hours' drive from where we live, so we'd be able to get there fairly easily if needed, but would need to get someone to manage the changeover arrangements, I think.
What sort of expenses would we need to consider, beyond mortgage, council tax, insurance, etc?
What about marketing - is it always advisable to go through an agent or could we manage with just our own website for the property?
Any advice (eg don't do it!) or suggestions gratefully received.
TIA.

midnightexpress Mon 22-Aug-11 12:39:14

bumping

Mumsnut Mon 22-Aug-11 12:53:09

<shameless piggy-back bump>

7to25 Mon 22-Aug-11 19:16:15

friends have a property in St Andrews. Lucrative and guaranteed income during the year and a golfing/holiday property for them during the summer.I realize that you are unlikely to be within striking distance of the east coast of Scotland, but could you adapt this idea? They have students fighting over it and it only has to be let once a year.

midnightexpress Mon 22-Aug-11 19:40:57

Ooh, well, as a matter of fact, we are within striking distance of St Andrews, just about. We're in Glasgow. We were thinking of somewhere nearer here, for financial reasons (ie the property is cheaper), but that's certainly worth considering. Thanks.

7to25 Mon 22-Aug-11 20:45:39

Ha Ha
I can't give too much away and out myself but if I were you, I would do some number crunching and find out the levels of student rents in St Andrews!

midnightexpress Mon 22-Aug-11 22:30:07

Hmmm, might do that, thanks. I fear it may be out of our price range though, as I guess that most student houses would have at least 3 or 4 bedrooms (though perhaps not in St Andrews, right enough). We're not golfers either! But it's definitely worth throwing into the mix at this stage. I guess that sort of property would also require less in the way of marketing.

Ceasnake Wed 24-Aug-11 11:41:49

Shameless bump too.

Does anyone know whether there’s a residential mortgage provider that would allow you to let your place as a holiday let occasionally? DH and I are looking to buy somewhere in the Isle of Wight, both for our own use and also to use as a holiday let. Obviously, it would be much cheaper to buy it on a residential mortgage rather than a specific holiday let one.

Jacaqueen Wed 24-Aug-11 12:47:15

We have a property in the East Neuk fairly close to St Andrews. Unfortunately it is not close enough to benefit from the lucrative student market.

We bought it last year as a longterm investement and a holiday home for ourselves. We are still renovating, and although I am doing it up to my taste, I am also trying to make it renter friendly just in case we decide to rent it out in the future.

I dont know too much about it though. There are companies who will market and manage it all for you but I presume they take a hefty commission.

midnightexpress Wed 24-Aug-11 16:50:52

Jacaqueen, my understanding (so far, limited) is that it may be more tax efficient to do it as a holiday let rather than a buy-to-let, with a longer term tenant. I found this page which explains the difference, tax-wise.

I've also read that a fairly high proportion of holiday lets are done by the owner, rather than through an agent (for the reasons you touch on, presumably). I guess you'd need a good website, but I think if you make reasonably good use of social media such as FB, you might be able to reach a good number of people without going through an agent.

We haven't examined the mortgage side of things in detail yet. I'd also be interested to know more about this if anyone knows.

The East Neuk is lovely! Love the coastal walks there.

aylsham Sun 25-Sep-11 23:51:26

Yes, we have a barn attached to our house which is a holiday let. we bought it three years ago and love doing it. We use an agency and have had around 85% occupancy for the three years to date. The tax rules changed this year. To qualify for all the benefits you it must be available to let for 140 days a year and let for at least 70 days. As it is only one bedroom, couples only i do the changeovers myself.

frenchfancy Tue 27-Sep-11 07:25:24

why not take a look at www.laymyhat.com/forum/index.php an internet forum just for owners with holiday lettings. They are a nice bunce and they will be able to answer your questions.

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