ARLA guide for reluctant landlordsMake Text Bigger
Letting agents reporting a rising number of homeowners renting out their properties because they cannot sell has more than doubled in a year, says the Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA).
The latest figures show almost half of letting agents (47%) were letting properties that the owners were unable to sell – up from 18% a year earlier.
ARLA blames difficulties in arranging mortgages for buyers as the main reason for the increasing number of reluctant landlords.
Operations manager Ian Potter said: “The rise suggests homeowners are struggling to sell their homes due to the sluggish market are increasingly looking to the private rented sector to utilise their property in the short term.
“Renting a home short-term is a good option for anyone who has found a buyer for their home, but not found the right property to buy themselves. Equally, for anyone ‘testing’ a new area before committing to move there, or working away from home for short periods, renting can offer more stability and home comforts than a hotel.”
Short-term lets can range from a week to several months, and are common in cities holding major sports and cultural events, like the London Olympics and the Edinburgh Festival.
ARLA has also issued advice for landlords contemplating short term lets:
- Price for bills – Price the letting cost to cover utility bills for a short term let
- Ready to rent – Clean the home throughout and make sure small details are covered, like replacing light bulbs and clearing away rubbish.
- Notify lenders – Tell mortgage lenders and insurers about the let as you may need permission from your bank or building society and must upgrade home insurance policies.
- Meet tenant expectations – With short-term lets, tenants expect extra services, like linen and cleaning. Don’t forget to price these in to the rent as well.
- Clear payments – Take cash or make sure electronic payments clear in your bank before letting the tenant move in. Set up a separate rent account away from any other cash to prevent ID theft or hacking.
- Meet and greet – Meet the tenants or arrange for a letting agent to deal with the handover so you can see who you are dealing with. Make sure you have verified a home address – most short term tenants will have their driving licence or passport with them.
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