Managing a property can be hard work! And running your own HMO, is even more so.
If you are a landlord looking to use a letting agent to manage your property for you, here are a few tips that we have learnt for handing over the control – sometimes the hard way!
Firstly, it’s so important that you have all the correct documents to hand, to prove you own the property, to show it’s HMO licenced, if appropriate, and to demonstrate you have all the relevant certification, which is up to date.
Should your property already have tenants living there, it is vital that the letting agent is given full contact details and up to date information for each tenant, along with any notices given and deposits which have been taken. Handing over an empty property is a little easier in this respect.
For letting agents, spare keys are an essential item. So, spare sets of all keys should be made available, expecially in the event that a tenant loses theirs – it happens more often than you’d think!
You would think that this is obvious, but checking all the appliances are plugged in and work properly is so often overlooked and leaving the instruction manuals available is a useful addage! Together with this, meters need to be checked that they do not have debt and money owing on them. It is also necessary to ensure they are accessible.
Try to ensure that you are handing over the property with as little maintenance as possible. Having to make repairs, tame gardens, solve leaks and purchase necessary items all adds to the initial cost of taking over a property and takes away from your profit.
Finally, make sure that although you may be handing over control of the management, that you are on hand and available to communicate with the agency. There will be times when communication is needed and necessary.