Friday, 19 February 2010

A successful spring for landlords is predicted

With spring just around the corner, landlords should do everything they can to ensure their properties are in the best possible order and reap the benefits of a predicted rise in rental income.

The rental market has seen greater demand but there are fewer quality properties available. This of course means that tenants no longer have as powerful bargaining power as they once did. However despite this, landlords should do everything they can to ensure their properties are presented in the best possible order to maximise their worth and achieve a quick let.

There are a number of steps landlords can take to make their properties not only more attractive to potential tenants but also to ensure they achieve the highest rental income. The property needs to be spotlessly clean, in good order with all the appliances tested and working and of course the legally required safety checks carried out.

Interiors should be painted in neutral colours to give a light and airy feel to the property, worn carpets and flooring should be professionally cleaned or replaced, windows kept spotless and gardens and external spaces immaculately presented. Adding up-to-date lighting and fixtures can also make a huge difference to the appearance of a property.

Spring is a particularly busy time in the lettings sector and the outlook for 2010 is very promising. However it is always important to remember that whereas a buyer might be happy to purchase a tired property which they can then add value to, a tenant wants a home which is fresh and ready to move into immediately. Our advice to landlords is not to expect anyone to live in a property that they themselves would not live in. Keeping a rental property in good order is good news for everyone as it means that it attracts better tenants, yields a higher rental income, and also maintains its value.

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Add value to your property this year

This year should see the gradual strengthening of the UK property market. Prime homes in prime locations always sell well, but there is a real shortage of better quality homes on the market so any work done has got to enhance the property. There are a number of things sellers can do to ensure their properties attract buyers and yield the best price.

Extensions and loft conversions, extra bedrooms and bathrooms, new kitchens, conservatories and creating off-road parking are all proven ways of increasing the value of a property, but there are also less expensive and invasive ways of ensuring a property is attractive to potential buyers.

Simple renovations can add value to a property. Re-decorating the outside and improving the garden will add instant curb-appeal. Light and airy properties are very attractive to buyers so decorate with light neutral colours. Dispose of clutter and if you are presenting your home to potential buyers remember to ‘stage’ it which will mean getting rid of too many personal items such as photographs and ornaments, ensuring that it is spotlessly clean, replacing old furniture with selected new items and carrying out basic repairs.

However, the cost of any home improvement must be in proportion to the value of the house. A lot of home improvements can be done without planning permission these days, but it is worth checking before the work starts. If you do have to apply for planning permission, allow for the costs involved and the extra time you'll need for permission to be granted.

There are a fewer number of properties coming on to the market at present and while this continues sellers have a great opportunity to obtain a higher price for their property and achieve a faster sale. However potential sellers should always consider the best ways they can add value to their property.

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