Whether you're planning to put your rental property on the market in spring 2018 or you've had the same tenants for a while and feel like their home needs a refresh, the coming weeks offer the perfect chance to get ready for the warmer months.
Let's start with the basics:
De-clutter and cleanWe all know that spring brings with it a fresh opportunity to give your property a deep clean and update the interior. Although you're not expected to keep your rental property clean while your tenants are living in it, you may decide that it's time to give the place a lick of paint or update the furnishings.
If your property is about to go onto the lettings market, make sure it's cleaned thoroughly before spring (the busy season) arrives and get rid of anything that's making it look cluttered - tenants want to see a blank canvas that they can make their own.
Don't ignore the exteriorDuring the winter months, it can be difficult to see or complete any repairs on the exterior of your property, as the days are shorter and the weather doesn't permit certain works. Now that the nights are getting lighter, it's time to pick up where you left off.
Before spring arrives, schedule in a periodic inspection of your property, so that you can make a plan of any work that needs completing when the weather improves. This way, the exterior of your property will be in a good condition for the brighter months and you can fix anything that went wrong over the winter.
Get the garden readyIf your rental property has a garden, there's a high chance that your tenants will want to take advantage of it. If you're planning to market the property soon, the garden will also be a massive selling point, so make sure to get out there and tidy it up.
On your pre-spring periodic inspection, it's a good idea to highlight any problems with the garden, so that your tenants know what you're expecting them to complete before your next visit. This helps everyone understand their responsibilities, and keeps your garden looking neat and tidy.
Remember the new MEES!The final top tip from Landlord News is perhaps the most important - from April 2018, the Government's new Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) will make it illegal for landlords to grant new leases (even to existing tenants) on properties with an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating below E.
If your property has an F or G rating, you will need to make energy efficiency improvements to it before April. Please note that the MEES will apply to all tenancies from April 2020, so don't delay.
Although there are some standard tasks that should be completed at this time every year, spring 2018 will bring with it an important legal change for landlords - don't forget to prepare your property!
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