UK landlords look to increase portfolios

James Davis, CEO of online lettings agent, Upad said: "The latest report from Jones Lang LaSalle suggests that 1.7 million additional privately rented homes will be needed over the next four years to meet demand. And, as a result of growing tenant demand, there is strong motivation for landlords to increase their portfolios and take advantage of the market."

Meanwhile, according to a recent Private Rental Sector Trends survey from specialist buy-to-let lender Paragon Mortgages, 91% of landlords said they thought that demand was fixed or had increased between July and September this year while 68% of landlords said that their rental income had remained the same during Q3 2012 and 27% said that it had actually increased – another reason for landlords to feel positive about the performance of the PRS.

With this positive news in mind, it seems UK landlords plan to increase their portfolios with the survey research revealing that the average holding is set to increase from 12.5% to 12.9 properties within a year. Of those surveyed, 16% plan to buy more property to rent out over the next 12 months.

Davis said: "The UK’s private rented sector is not only stable, it is increasing. There is more incentive than ever for UK landlords to invest in rental properties with the likelihood that we will see a significant increase in the number of accidental landlord’s entering the market over the next year. As a result, it is important to highlight exactly what it takes to be successful in this game that’s why have provided our top five tips on how to be a better landlord."

For UK landlords looking to take advantage of the PRS, why not brush up on your landlord skills with Upad’s top tips.

1 Meet your tenants
It is essential that you get to know your tenants and form a professional relationship with them. If you make the effort to form a solid relationship this should make for a smoother tenancy with less hassle.

2 Reference your tenants
This might sound obvious but always make sure a tenant can afford the rent. It is also worth doing your research and checking that their rental history is free of any problems.

3 Professional photography
Getting professional photographs for your ads will get you up to eight times as many tenant enquiries per day. Upad recently had a property advertised with standard landlord photographs for 58 days which only received 10 tenant enquiries. When it advertised the same property with professional pictures for just 18 days tenant enquiries jumped to 27. The results speak for themselves.

4 Set up a standing order mandate
Why not set up a standing order mandate which will mean that your tenants will never forget to pay the rent.

5 Name drop
When advertising a property, mention you are a private landlord in your ads. Only 15% of tenants want to meet an agent for viewings, so this is a big selling point.

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