So, what are tenants looking for when renting a property from a landlord or agent – and what puts them off?
When looking at the top tenant requirements when renting a property, many are similar to property sales requirements. Location, transport links, access to outside spaces, good parking and good storage will always be big hitters for home-movers regardless of living status.
Where it differs to buying a home is in the features and responsibilities that lie with the landlord or agent; the ones the tenant can’t change or action themselves.
Safe and secure properties
Security and safety are good examples. Landlords can do a lot here to make a tenant feel safer in their new rented home, such as:
- Installing smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms and inspecting them regularly.
- Installing a house alarm for security.
- Installing good locks to the doors and windows, and a peep hole to the front door.
- Checking windows, fencing and gates to ensure they close securely.
- Carrying out electrical safety checks on appliances, boilers and heaters.
Energy efficient properties
With the cost of living rising, combined with high energy bills, landlords can also help to ease the burden by making their rental properties more energy efficient.
Improve loft insulation, fix windows, remedy draughts, bleed the radiators, upgrade appliances, switch to LED lighting, and install a smart thermostat or meter. Then get your property assessed for its energy performance. Your fixes could improve your EPC rating which is an attractive feature for prospective tenants.
Clean and well-maintained properties
A professional clean is always recommended before showing a property to a new, potential tenant. Without a thorough clean, most people would assume the property hasn’t been well-looked after and that the landlord or agent doesn’t care. These are all red flags to new tenants.
A professional clean also gives you and the tenant a benchmark to keep to when checking out.
But a clean property is just the start. The condition of your property can be an instant deal breaker. A tenant won’t want to rent a property that is already showing signs of disrepair or damage, as this isn’t something they can or will want to sort out themselves. It’s not their property, after all.
Ongoing maintenance will not only demonstrate a landlord’s commitment to its tenant, it will also help to keep the property in good condition. Interim inspections during each tenancy will highlight issues such as mould and damp, wear and tear, damage and areas in need of repair or renewal, which can all be remedied in good time before they become much larger, more costly problems in the future. This makes it much easier to manage the condition for new and existing tenants too.
Reputable, easy to deal with landlord and/or agent
It’s not just the properties the tenants are weighing up, it’s also the people they’ll be dealing with if things go wrong.
We are in the age of reviews and reputation management, and most people will carry out their own online research to establish if a landlord is trustworthy, approachable and fair.
Because so many responsibilities lie with the landlord/agent, tenants want to make sure they’ll be dealing with someone they can rely on when it comes to their home.
Encourage existing satisfied tenants to leave positive reviews on the popular platforms like Google and Trustpilot. If you need to strengthen relationships with tenants beforehand, it may be time to improve how you interact with them on a regular basis.
The Inventory Hive property reporting platform can help. As a platform used by landlords letting agents and inventory clerk companies, Inventory Hive enables tenants to provide feedback on inspection reports digitally in their own time without it becoming an admin drain for the landlord and letting agent. Often tenant/landlord relationships break down because of a lack of communication or misunderstandings. This way, everything is transparent and easy to deal with.
Giving tenants an opportunity to provide feedback on property inspection reports demonstrates how you’re willing to listen and support your tenants, which in turn helps to build a stronger relationship and reputation.
The best place to start is by putting yourself in the shoes of the tenant. What would you look for in a rented property or from a good landlord or agent?
Learn more at inventoryhive.co.uk and sign up for your free 30 day trial (no card details required) to create unlimited property inspection reports.
* Richard Abbots is the CEO and Founder at Inventory Hive