How to Add Value to Your Rental Property

With tenancy reforms edging closer and ongoing instability around mortgage rates, the current climate is proving challenging for buy-to-let investors. That said, high demand for properties to let and a wide pool of tenants to choose from mean investing in the right rental property can still provide strong returns in the long-term.

Once you’ve got the keys, consider some of the simple things you can do to add value to your rental property.  

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Use a rental property value calculator

It’s important that you use a rental property value calculator regularly, to ensure that you’re charging the correct rent in order to make a profit from your investment. The calculator will factor in things like the value of your rental property, the rent you’re charging, your current mortgage rate and any ongoing maintenance costs.

Using a calculator to gain an insight into how things stand with your investment at any given time can help you to make decisions such as whether to increase the rent, or whether you can afford to make improvements throughout the property.

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Treat your tenants to some tech

If you want to encourage professional tenants, it’s worth investing in your property’s tech. With more people working remotely than pre-pandemic, a high speed, reliable internet connection sits firmly on many tenants’ property search checklists.

Investing in security features such as an alarm system can also help to protect your property and provide reassurance for your tenants. If you’re starting to think about sustainable living and boosting your property’s EPC rating, adding eco-conscious features such as a smart thermostat can provide a step in the right direction and help to keep the bills down.   

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Think sustainability

All rental properties are currently required to have an Energy Performance Certificate rating of E or above, but the government is expected to tighten these rules so by 2028 so that all existing rental properties will need to achieve a rating of C or higher. If and when the new rules come in, more than 50% of properties are expected to need investment and upgrades to meet an EPC rating of C, so investing in sustainability sooner rather than later could be a wise move for landlords looking to add value to their portfolio.

Keep an eye out for the government’s ECO Plus scheme, through which grants are offered to some homeowners and landlords to help fund insulation for their homes. The scheme is designed to support the owners of properties in lower council tax bands as they act to meet the EPC requirements, and it will run until 2026.

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Don’t forget the basics

Sometimes, there’s value in going back to the basics. Stand outside your rental property and look at it through the eyes of a prospective tenant. Does the paint need a refresh? Could the property benefit from a new front door if the current one is looking tired and weather-worn? Investing some time and money into the exterior of a property can help you to attract a wider, attractive pool of potential tenants – or even buyers when you come to sell.

Step inside and look around. If the flooring is starting to show signs of wear and tear, replacing it can always be an easy way to boost your property’s value. If the rest of the property is decorated to a high specification, worn, tired-looking carpets can let it down, creating a negative impression for would-be tenants and buyers.  

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Rent your property as a HMO

Renting your property as a House of Multiple Occupation (HMO) could enable you to generate higher rental yields than you can from letting to a single tenant. There are a number of conditions and regulations that apply to HMOs. An HMO licence will be required for larger HMOs that have 3 or more storeys and 5 or more persons from at least 2 separate households If you’re going to let your property as a HMO, take steps to keep it as universally appealing as you can. When it comes to décor, steer away from statement pieces and bold colours and patterns. Opting for more classic, neutral shades will avoid putting off potential tenants and should help you to create a clean, contemporary aesthetic.

Adding as much storage space as possible for your tenants is also worthwhile, as space is often a high priority for would-be renters. Think about ways to maximise storage space throughout the property, such as adding walk-in wardrobes, or offering access to a loft space.

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Landlord insurance from Towergate

We provide landlord insurance for a wide range of properties and tenants including multi occupancy, students, local authority placements, unoccupied and much more. See our landlord insurance page or call 0330 828 1020 for more.

Note: Every effort has been made to ensure the above information is correct at the time of this article going online, however, we recommend that you seek professional advice if required.

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About the author

Alison Wild Bcom Hons MAAT MATT Taxation Technician Commercial Tax Pensions Insurance And Marketing Specialist AuthorAlison Wild BCom (Hons), MAAT, ATT, Taxation Technician is a highly respected industry professional who has been working with and advising SMEs in areas including tax, pensions, insurance and marketing for over 25 years. She is a member of the Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT) and Association of Tax Technicians (AAT) and also has considerable experience as a residential landlord.