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Should I let out my buy-to-let property to a family?

2-minute read

Mollie Millman

20 June 2018

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As a landlord, the thought of renting out your property to a family may fill you with horror.

There’s the perceived risk of the damage that a family could do, and the amount of time and money that it could take to rectify the problems - something that could eat heavily into a landlord’s profits.

But new research suggests that it could take less time dealing with families compared to other types of tenant.

Time spent on property management lower when renting to families

The research found that landlords who rent to families and young couples spend eight hours on property management, the equivalent of one working day.

And this is a favourable comparison to migrant workers, benefit recipients and executives. Landlords who rent to those types of tenants spend 14 hours, 13 hours and 12 hours on property management respectively, according to the survey carried out by the National Landlords Association.

Families make "good, reliable, and long-term tenants"

Richard Lambert, chief executive of the National Landlords Association, said: “This data reinforces the fact that families make good, reliable, and long-term tenants, but some landlords can be put off by the perceived risk of more damage or wear and tear to the property or its contents.

“However, if you’re properly maintaining the property then tenants will be more likely to stay for longer anyway, particularly families who typically seek more stability. This is just one more argument for establishing a proper maintenance schedule in the first place.”

Greater tenant churn means more time spent on management

He added: “Landlords who rent to migrant workers or provide executive lets may find it takes up more management time because there’s a greater churn of tenants which means re-marketing the property, drawing up tenancy agreements, and conducting property viewings more regularly.”

The National Landlords Association suggests another big cause for concern is that those in receipt of benefits take up more management time for landlords.

Mr Lambert continued: “The combination of welfare cuts and the introduction of Universal Credit make it difficult for some benefit recipients to keep up with rental payments and that often means taking more time for the landlord to manage. It’s frustrating for everyone because the issues can be outside the control of both tenants and landlords.”

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