Top Tips for a Cost-Effective Turnaround on an Investment Property.
Top Tips for a Cost-Effective Turnaround on an Investment Property
Meta description: Closing your first purchase on an investment property is a very exciting moment, filled with anticipation and optimism. However, ensuring a cost effective turnaround is essential.
Closing your first purchase on an investment property is an exciting moment, filled with anticipation and optimism. Moments later however, the reality of the situation will dawn on you; the hard work that needs to be done, money that needs to be spent and the time in which you need to turn the property around are all hanging in the balance – and there’s not a second to spare!
Ideally the property will be on the market the following month and rented thereafter, yet cutting corners at this stage will inevitably cause more headaches down the line. It’s important to remember that if your tenants are uncomfortable due to constant repairs having to be done they will leave, and the months spent back on the market will ultimately drain more of your financial resources than if the job had been completed thoroughly from the start.
There will unavoidably be many lessons to be learnt ahead; follow these tips to help you avoid some of the common pitfalls first time purchasers’ face in the early stages.
Be conservative when planning your budget. Allow some room for unexpected expenditure and to ensure that you’re able to fund the project properly. Be sure to do your research before you start penciling in costs, including getting estimates and quotes from as many plumbers, electricians and joiners as you can.
However, there will be certain jobs that you can complete yourself such as painting, fitting door handles and laying flooring, amongst other simpler tasks. It is important to bear in mind as you carry out these DIY activities that there is always a chance that you may end up out of your depth and will need to call on the expertise of a professional.
Repairs Come First
In the weeks leading up to your purchase there may have been a whole series of lavish and impressive improvements that you fantasized about making to your property, but be sure to rein in your enthusiasm just a little and crack on with your repairs first.
Painting and Floors
After repairs should come the painting and flooring. This is particularly important when looking to rent out your property, as a fresh and clean house instantly places your plot in a more desirable bracket and should put you in a stronger position for attracting a wider range of tenants. Stick to neutral shades, something tasteful and not offensive – magnolia and white are safe bets in this respect. When it comes to flooring avoid laying carpets wherever possible; use wood-laminate flooring as this is more durable and easier to clean. It’s not unusual for every new tenant to request new carpets, so save yourself the hassle from the start if you can.
Prepare to go to market
Securing a tenancy can be tricky business. You want to attract as many candidates as possible, allowing you to choose the tenants that you feel comfortable having in your property.
Ensure that everything that is visible is adequately arranged. Mow the lawns, trim the hedges and give your window frames a lick of paint. Put the bins in the back garden and get a big house number on the front door. Make sure your To-Let signs and contact number are clearly visible.
You should also take some nice photographs to go in the window of your estate agents. A letting agent will offer a hand with this if they feel it’s necessary, but it’s worth taking as many as possible during the renovation process, to give you more options to choose from.
Find the Right Agent
After all of your hard work and investment it’s important that you choose the right agent. This is someone who offers you a good deal, but who will also represent you well to your tenants. A tenant becoming upset with an agent is a very common reason for them leaving the property.
Find someone who shares your values and who you can communicate easily with. This is the best way to ensure you have a long, successful and hopefully, quiet life as a landlord.
Scott Beaman is a writer for Affirmative Finance, a Manchester based bridging finance lender. Affirmative Finance offer bridging loan options to property developers, financial intermediaries and individuals when they require short term funds to complete their projects.