Property is a secure investment that will offer capital growth, and high demand among tenants is pushing rental prices up. Major cities, satellite towns and rural locations all posted positive annual price growth of up to more than 10%, according to the latest Citylets report. But what can landlords do to ensure they can attract a good quality tenant and make their property work for them?

Landlords must recognise that entering into the lettings market is a business decision. It is imperative to be realistic about the level of ‘fair’ wear and tear your property will incur when let out to tenants. Once a landlord has decided to enter the lettings market they must take a step back and remember that the property is no longer their own home.

Troublesome tenants can be a real headache for a landlord, so choose carefully. Late payers and tenants who don’t look after the property during their tenancy should be avoided. A suitable tenant is someone who pays on time, preferably by standing order and is willing to look after the property to a good standard, including the garden.

Credit checking, contacting their employers plus seeking references from their previous landlords can help you determine if someone is right for your property. A lettings agent can undertake all the necessary reference and financial checks and many landlords are opting for a fully managed lettings service. If you are opting to manage your rental property yourself, the best advice is to meet the prospective tenant in person, instinct alone can often put your mind at ease. Routine property inspections are also important to ensure that the property is maintained throughout the tenancy by both the landlord and the tenant.

Bear in mind that the prospective tenant will also be judging you and your property and trying to decide whether it’s the right property for them and whether they can trust you to be a good landlord.

Making the right impression in those first few seconds is vital. The property should look at its best from the approach and any front lawns or driveways should be immaculate. Give the potential tenant confidence in you as a landlord too by developing a good relationship with the potential tenant as quickly as possible – gaining their confidence at this stage will help reinforce that you will be fair during their tenancy and will deal with problems swiftly and effectively if necessary.

The property must be of a high standard to attract a good quality tenant. Imagine it’s you renting the property and ask yourself what you would expect from a landlord and the property? As a landlord it doesn’t have to cost a fortune to upgrade your let property. Nice bathrooms and kitchens are priorities on tenants’ wish lists, whilst painting the walls and fitting new carpets needn’t be too expensive. Along with energy efficient measures including good insulation and a modern heating system, these measures are the best way to attract a tenant willing to pay a higher monthly rent.

Clients who have upgraded their property to include, for example, a more efficient heating system and a new kitchen have been able to secure a tenant who will remain for several years and charge a higher rental fee. This investment in the property will pay off in terms of higher rental revenue, fewer complaints from the tenant, and will also ensure your asset is kept in good condition for the future. 

Galbraith has a team of highly experienced lettings agents on hand to advise on what you need to do to make your property more attractive in a competitive market place. We can manage the whole process of advising on compliance regulations, marketing the property, finding tenants, carrying out credit checks, legal documents and the full tenancy cycle through to deposit return.

A property recently let by Galbraith is Rowan Tree Cottage4, 4 Middletoun Farm Cottages, Stow, Galashiels, Scottish Borders, PCM £700. Situated in a fantastic rural location with Edinburgh only 21 miles away, this fully furnished property offers spacious and modern accommodation with a delightful sitting room with wood burning stove, dinning kitchen, two double bedrooms and a further study/dressing room, family bathroom and a private garden.