With the rising costs that are associated with being a homeowner in the UK, many people these days consider renting to be their best option.
Because of this, business is booming for anyone with a property or two on the rental market. But being a landlord isn’t all about collecting rent at the start of each month, you also have a few costs to contend with, too.
The good news is that many landlords aren’t running at their most cost-effective. That means it’s likely that there are one or two ways that you can reduce your costs. Hooray!
We’re going to share penny-saving strategies you can implement now and in the future, so you can reduce the costs of being a landlord in the UK.
1. Keep on Top of Maintenance
As solid as your property is, little maintenance issues are sure to spring up from time to time.
All of these cost money to fix, but this is a case of spending money to save money. While they may not seem like a big deal to start with, even the smallest maintenance concerns have a way of getting out of hand if ignored.
This can result in small costs turning into very big costs.
Even if you could guarantee a maintenance issue wouldn’t get out of hand, it still makes financial sense to sort them quickly. While they may not seem like a big deal to you, you don’t have to live with them, your tenant does.
So, if maintenance issues aren’t solved effectively, tenants can quickly become disillusioned with where they’re living and move on. That means you end up losing money while you find a new tenant.
2. Build a Team of Tradespeople
If you have a problem,if no one else can help, and if you can find them, maybe you can hire the A-Team… of trade professionals to help fix that leaky pipe.
All joking aside, we’ve just looked at the importance of keeping on top of maintenance and that’s pretty difficult to do without a crack team in your corner.
Knowing who can perform a great job at a good rate is paramount to reducing the costs of being a landlord in the UK.
Forming a decent working relationship can lead to two things:
1. The Best Rates
Professional help isn’t always cheap, but a tradesman might be inclined to give you a great deal if you can send him regular work.
Although we’re hoping this never happens to you, a sudden power outage or a burst pipe can cause huge problems for your tenants and your property.
Having a reliable connection who can jump on the problem as soon as possible is the best way to keep your tenants happy and your property standing.
3. Shop Around for the Best Insurance Deals
There’s nothing fun about looking for insurance, but it’s a necessary evil for landlords.
If you’re keen to keep costs low, you may be tempted by the cheapest option, but this isn’t always going to give you the cover you require.
If you’re letting the property furnished you should consider contents cover, it may be worth looking for extras like provision for alternative accommodation should the worst happen and your tenant needs a place to stay.
Comparison sites will show you a lot of cheap buildings and contents insurance options, but a quick internet search will reveal many brokers who don’t appear on aggregator websites.
Before making any commitment, double-check the plan you go for has everything you want to be included as part of the price, such as accidental damage. You may also wish to take out rental guarantee insurance to cover for loss of rental income.
And remember, you’re responsible for sorting out contents insurance for the items in your property that are owned by you, but your tenants have to find insurance for their own belongings. You should remind them of this before they sign a contract with you.
4. Keep on Top of your Accounts
If you’re managing a property, then you need to keep on top of your accounts like any business. This is for the simple reason that many of the costs you incur may be tax-deductible.
Always keep your receipts for any work done for your rental property. A check with HMRC could end up reducing the costs of being a landlord in the UK by a significant amount.
So, if you’re not already keeping careful track of your accounts, start doing so and speak to a professional tax advisor to learn more.
5. Gain a Good Reputation
One of the easiest ways for you to reduce the cost of being a landlord in the UK is by gaining a good reputation.
It can take a long time to fill a rental property as new houses and flats go on the market every day, so by being cheerful and attentive, you increase the chances of your tenant resigning at the end of your agreement.
Not only will this stop the dreaded void period costing you a month or two in rent, but you also reduce all the hassle and costs that come with going through the advertising and screening process again.
Even if your current tenant is set on leaving because they have found a new job, they need more room or simply because they’ve found a home of their own, they can still be invaluable in helping you find a new tenant, whether that be a friend or family.
6. Use an Expert Property Manager
One of the mistakes landlords make that lead to extra costs is simply biting off more than they can chew. While being a landlord may seem simple on the surface, it’s actually a pretty skillful job.
Not only do you have to keep on top of multiple properties and their finances, but you need to be keeping an eye on market trends and the ever-changing laws.
This leads to a major cost that we haven’t spoken about: time.
Being a landlord is a time-consuming career, but it doesn’t have to be.
Everything listed in this article can be done by a property management agency, who can take all the hard work off your shoulders – leaving you plenty of time to relax.
As well as arranging maintenance work, tracking your accounts and caring for your tenants, estate agents can send you regular reports to keep you up to speed and provide any recommendations on how to improve your property further.
By handing the day to day management of your properties to an expert, you can improve efficiencies (which in turn reduces costs) and enjoy more time stress-free. Win-win!
7. Consolidate Costs
There’s no magic formula for reducing the cost of being a landlord in the UK, but hopefully, this article has given you some ideas.
When it comes to cost, reduction should not be your only priority. No one wants to feel weighed down by endless bills. It’s in these situations that costs become difficult to manage and slowly begin to rise.
One of the best ways to combat this is by consolidating as many costs into one as possible.
Using a property manager cannot only help you reduce your costs, but they can also help you take a big step to consolidating them into something more manageable.
If this article has made you wonder whether there are costs you could reduce, it’s time to speak to an expert who can help you further.
Philip Ellis’s team of property management are well-versed in keeping costs as low as possible for landlords in Greater Manchester. So, if you’re looking for ways to make more from being a landlord, get in touch with the best estate agents Manchester has to offer to learn more. We’ll even provide a free lettings valuation to make sure you’re maximising the rental value of your property!