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Landlords told to expect a bumper year

With 2011 less than a month old, industry insiders are giving prospective landlords two morsels of advice that they see as essential to getting the most out of the buy-to-let sector. Firstly, get strong, comprehensive landlord insurance and secondly, present your properties to the best standard you can achieve.

Already the financial markets are giving conflicting signals about what to expect in the coming year, but those in the property sector insist that 2011 will be a fantastic year for those landlords willing to put in the extra work that any thriving business needs to push it onwards to greater success. They qualify the remarks by saying that any good businessman should also have a safety net just in case things go wrong.

Which areas will benefit?

Letting agents across the country are already reporting high levels of interest in their properties with some saying the number of people registering for rental properties is 15% above the same time last year. Areas that have been in the doldrums regarding landlord profitability in the past such as South Yorkshire and Wales are reporting brisk business daily. One agent at Lancaster’s letting agency in Barnsley reported the letting scene as “manic” as up to half a dozen would-be tenants are looking at each and every property on their books.

Interested parties agree

Independent letting company, Leaders, say the prospects for landlords have rarely been better. Paul Weller, the Chief Executive, said recently that anyone looking to enter the sector or even extending their portfolios should look upon January 2011 as the perfect time. Other industry insiders say a similar thing; over the last fortnight two other companies; Landlord Zone and Landlord Assist have said signs look exceptionally good for the landlord with cash in his pocket and property insurance in his safe.

With several economists saying the UK is heading for a sea change in the way we view property and the ownership of it, landlords could be forgiven for rubbing their hands and waiting for the money to roll in. However, most of the experts who are forecasting a bumper year for the letting industry say it is the landlord who presents his properties in the best possible light that will succeed. According to Leaders this type of landlord will not only attract better rates of rent but he will secure tenants looking for a longer rental agreement, therefore giving him more security.

By Simon Dack