Over the years, we’ve spoken with many landlords who seek out a property management company in Seaford due to the sheer amount of work involved managing a property. As a landlord, you will be responsible for meeting certain costs related to your property. These costs can make novice landlords come unstuck. It’s important to budget well, and put aside a reasonable proportion of the rental income to account for them. You should also remember that these costs are still your responsibility whether you have tenants in the property or not.
No one likes paying out for insurance, but unfortunately it has to be done. This is just as true when it comes to rental property as your own home or your car. The price of buildings and contents insurance varies depending on the location and size of your property, but you should generally budget between 2-3% of the total rental income. If you rent out a furnished property you will also need contents insurance, which will cost an additional 1-4% of the rent, depending on how expensive the furniture you have provided is. Remember that insurance costs for the same property can vary dramatically between different companies, so it is wise to use an insurance comparison website to get quotes from a number of different sources.
Replacing fixtures and fittings
No matter how careful your tenants are, fixtures and fittings will occasionally need to be repaired and replaced. You can’t deduct money from your tenant’s deposit for reasonable wear and tear, so you will need to cover these costs yourself. You should generally put 10% of the rent aside to account for this. You should also use this money to redecorate every few years. This might seem like a large amount, but you should remember that the key to maximising your rental income is to keep your property in good shape. Spending a reasonable amount on refreshing the property every now and then will pay off in the end.
Sometimes things break, and they have an annoying propensity to break when you least expect it. As landlord, you will be responsible for fixing things when they go wrong. As you might imagine, costs like this can mount up. However they can be largely avoided when you choose the right property to buy. This is especially true with major structural repairs, which most landlords should be able to bypass entirely with careful property selection and a bit of luck.
Ground rent and service charges
Most flats or apartments are sold on a leasehold basis. Under these circumstances you will have to pay a ground rent to the freeholder, and there may be some kind of service charge too.
Letting agency fee
Letting agencies believe in charging the landlords reasonable fees that won’t cut into their profit margin in a significant way. Not only that, but the service they provide generally ensures landlords can avoid costly problems and maximise their rental income.
It’s foolish to assume that your property will always be occupied. Most of the time it will be, but all landlords have to account for “void periods”, jargon for the empty spaces between tenancies. We will work to minimise these periods and make them as short as possible, but you should still budget for the property to be empty for one month each year.
The largest expense to account for is the mortgage. This is hardly an unexpected expense, and is likely to be the first figure that you take into account.
When you add up the cost of renting a property vs. the monthly rental income, you might get a nasty surprise. Often, when a landlord budgets correctly for all eventualities, the rental income isn’t yielding much of a profit at all. This is nothing to worry about, and is perfectly normal during the first few years of a tenancy. Once the rental price starts to creep up, the monthly profits will too. And of course the entire time the property should be increasing in value too.