What do tenants want in 2019?
The rental market is changing and not just the legislation. In 1995-96, 65% of middle-income 25 to 34-year-olds owned a home. Twenty years on only 27% do, with the most significant drop in London and south-east England. In addition, 50% of children in the UK are born into rented accommodation. Indicating that renting is becoming a long-term housing solution for many, which may be good news if you have a property to let. However, what do tenants want in 2019 and is your offering desirable to a prospective renter?
Data collated by Zoopla indicates that most renters are looking for parking or a garage. Probably not surprising considering parking in cities and some towns are scarce. If your buy to let property comes with parking, then make sure it is featured highly in your listing so this desirable commodity can be easily seen by potential tenants.
With renting becoming a long-term choice for many people, finding somewhere that can accommodate a companion of the animal variety is high on the list.
Families especially may be looking for accommodation suitable for their pets, with 49% of UK adults owning one.
Renters are becoming savvier about how efficient the properties they rent are. Does your rental property have a smart thermostat to help save tenants money and maintain an even temperature?
Are the appliances provided energy efficient?
Or perhaps you have installed a smart door lock so losing keys is a thing of the past.
Is the documentation your tenants need readily available online, perhaps via a secure cloud-based service? Things such as the inventory that your renters can access, complete and upload back to the cloud for you to retrieve. Copies of the rental agreement that your tenant can easily refer to at any time should they have queries.
Being able to get online is a must in today’s world. What is the wifi connection like in the area of your rental property? Do you get an excellent mobile phone signal?
The demands placed on a wifi connection are significant. Not only do tenants want to browse the internet and use the services on their mobile phone they are also streaming music, films and computer games. They might also work from home and need a sufficient connection to dial into meetings and upload documents to the cloud.
Providing robust wifi could make all the difference in securing a tenant.
Access to help
When things go wrong tenants want an easy way to access help and the issue to be resolved quickly. Look at how things such as property maintenance are handled.
Is there the ability to contact someone to assist via text or an online messaging service alongside telephoning? In a busy world, people don’t always have the time to ring a switchboard and wait in line just to log a problem.
Are you using technology to keep them up to date with the resolution to their issue, giving them a specific time frame, so they don’t have to take a whole day off work waiting for a handyman?
As you might have imagined outside space is desired by a large proportion of renters, whether that be a garden, balcony or communal area.
Keep these areas well maintained and low maintenance to provide the most value to renters.
Treated like a person
Tenants don’t want to be treated as a commodity. Make them feel valued and be approachable if managing the property, yourself. Garnering a good relationship with your tenants will provide benefits for everyone and will increase your chances of keeping them for the long term.
Using a letting agent
If you choose to use a letting agent to help manage your rental property, ensure that you research and find the agent with the best offering for you. It’s not just about what fees you may have to pay that you will not be able to recoup back from your tenants. It’s about the service they provide both you and potential renters. Do they make the process easy? Are they up to date with all the upcoming legislation changes? How well do they know the area? What is their reputation like locally?
Letting property in 2019
Considering what families, young professionals, retired couples and every demographic in between need from a rental property can help you to look at your property with fresh eyes. However, do so with your specific area in mind.
If you live in a city, then you might be looking to market a multi-roomed house to students. But if you live in a rural area, then students may not be a community that even exists, and a more substantial property might need to be marketed towards families.
Highlight your property’s most desirable features and consider using technology to provide a slicker service for both you and your tenants to make the process of letting easier. The one thing that people value today that never changes is excellent customer service. While the mechanics of delivering this may be different in 2019, the concept remains the same.
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