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Thinking of buying a flat to rent out - any top tips?

(4 Posts)
TheWholeCaboodle Fri 26-Oct-12 11:07:12

I will clearly be wanting to research the area, market, processes etc before I take the leap, but was wondering if there were any top tips from those of you that are or have been landlords that you'd wished you'd known before you started?

Thanks smile

lalalonglegs Fri 26-Oct-12 19:22:59

We've never had any problem renting out our properties because we choose ones that we would be happy to live in ourselves (good locations, nice proportions, we decorate them well etc). Lots of people recommend buying the cheapest pit you can find and I think most properties will rent but if you want to get a regular supply of long-term tenants and not have voids, then I would buy a quality property.

Decide how long you want to keep the property as well. We have two that we are keeping for ever and the others, we intend to sell on at regular intervals (again, this is easier if you buy a "nice" property to start with). We have always bought dumps and done them up to build in equity.

Finally, check leases (assuming you are looking at flats) to see if they allow sub-letting.

I wish I had known how easy it was to rent out a flat privately and not spent several years paying agencies to do it for me grin.

maybenow Fri 26-Oct-12 19:31:19

yup, beware it is not hassle-free... it depends on your tenants, i rented my flat out when i met and moved in with dh and it was sometimes easy as pie, and other times i'd get tenants who wouldn't pay till they'd been hassled 3-4times per month but becasue they did eventually pay i couldn't get rid of them till the end of the six months (during which time i nearly lost the will to live).
In a flat, make sure the other owners are responsible, nothing worse than ending up with a huge repair bill on a comunal area or roof becasue the other owners are lax with maintenance.

TheWholeCaboodle Sat 27-Oct-12 10:56:05

thanks Maybenow and LaLaLonglegs - appreciate it smile

My DH did this a few years ago, and we lost a huge amount of money as a tenant wouldn't get out and wouldn't pay, so was wondering if you get get insurance against this?

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