Preparing your property for letting
Generally I find that the higher the standard of a property the more likely I have been to secure a good tenant, and they are more likely to look after it. My standards vary depending upon the price bracket I’m aiming for: the higher the rent the better the quality, seems sensible, but I’ve seen landlords go completely over the top, particularly in their early days, and have spent far more money than they have needed to.
I have a set of Formula I which you may find useful:
- If I need to redecorate I always choose magnolia for walls, and white for ceilings and woodwork At the top end of the properties i use Dulux Timeless( I am not brand promoting but just love the subtlety of this colour).
- I buy in bulk 25l sized containers several at a time because this is far cheaper, and I know I will always use it. I have an account with a paint trade wholesaler and get a great discount.
- The trend these days is to use a matt finish, looks looks great but is very unforgiving. I generally prefer a vinyl finish, which is more expensive, but really hard wearing. It can be cleaned rather than having to be redone.
- I used to use gloss on the woodwork but now use an eggshell paint. To do a good gloss finish takes time and effort and more money whereas eggshell is far quicker to use.It’s other advantage is it can be repainted with just one coat, which is not the case with gloss paint.
- I use a good quality vinyl for bathrooms and kitchens. I normally pay £10 to £12 per metre. Whenever I’ve used cheaper grade I have regretted it, It just hasn’t stood the test of time.
- I use carpet in bedrooms, hall, stairs and landing. I go for a middle range normally retailing and about £10 to £12 pounds per square metre I normally choose a neutral colour, but not too light, and buy by the roll, which often results in a 30% plus saving. What is left i store, or better still get my fitters to store it for me.
- In recent years I’ve chosen to use laminated wood for flooring in the lounge and dining areas. It costs about the same price per meter as carpet, but is more expensive to lay. The advantage is that it is far more durable and resistant to spills and damage.If you are considering using this product i suggest you check that the floor is at least reasonably level, and that you use a good quality underlay.
- If they need to be replaced I always buy online. There are several good companies who give a great professional service. I use neutral colours and styles and find I can save up to 50% compared to High Street Retailers, and often get a better quality product.
- Don’t be tempted to go for high gloss, as It gets damaged really easily. Natural wood can look great but takes a lot of preparation, and again can be easily damaged.
- Extractor fans
- I have given up buying cheap fans as I was forever replacing them. I now buy a good quality fan from an established company, I find it worth it.
Cleaning a property
I always make certain the property has been thoroughly cleaned, first impressions count, and hopefully the tenant is more likely to leave it as they found it.