Preparing your Holiday Home for Summer – Winter is officially well and truly behind us, which means that people across the UK are now starting to think about their next holidays. Landlords who own holiday homes should therefore start preparing their properties as soon as possible in order to ensure that they are filled before the holiday season begins; however this can often be a bigger job than first expected. Here, PropertyQuoteDirect looks at how you can prepare your holiday home as quickly as possible:
The Post-Winter Inspection
One of the most important things when it comes to preparing your holiday home is to make sure you give it a thorough inspection, as during the winter months it is highly likely damages could have occurred. During the past winter in particular we have seen some exceptionally bad weather, with houses across the country being affected by flooding and damages caused by high winds. If your holiday home was affected by the floods then you probably already know and are in the process of having it repaired via your landlord insurance, however smaller defects may be more difficult to spot.
Roof tiles and gutters should be the first thing you check when you inspect your holiday home as they can easily be damaged by high winds and heavy rainfall. If you do find issues with either it is important that you contact a tradesman to fix the damages as quickly as possible, that way you will prevent them from becoming worse and causing serious issues within your property.
If your holiday home has been left empty over the winter then it is likely dust will have built up throughout, meaning you will need to arrange for it to be thoroughly cleaned. As a landlord you may already use a cleaning company if you own multiple properties, however if you only let the one holiday home then you could save yourself some money by pulling up your sleeves and cleaning it yourself!
Unfortunately, when properties are left empty for a substantial period of time they are also prone to damp as well as unwelcomed visitors such as mice, and if this is the case with your property you will have little other option than to hire a professional. If the damp is only minor you may be able to clean it and find that once the property is aired out it doesn’t return, however if it does you will need to look into the root cause.
Marketing your Holiday Home
Once you know for certain that your property is in a fit state to be let out you will need to start planning how you will find tenancies for the spring and/or summer periods. When it comes to holiday homes most tenants only stay between two and four weeks, which means you will need to find multiple tenancies in order to make sure you gain the income you require. If you have tenants that have stayed in your holiday home before it may be wise to email or call them to see if they are considering staying in your property again, and if so what weeks they have in mind.
If you need new tenants to move in to your holiday home, or have certain weeks where your property is currently vacant and you are struggling to find tenants to fill it, it may be an idea to get in touch with a letting agent. Even though you will have to pay a fee to the letting agent for marketing your holiday home and finding tenants, it will more than likely make better economic sense than leaving your property void for a substantial period of time. Don’t forget to check the rent prices for similar properties in the area during peak periods, as you may struggle to find tenants if you are charging too much, yet you don’t want to find out too late you charged too little!
Even though letting a holiday home sounds less difficult than letting a property throughout the year, the truth is it actually takes a lot of hard work. If you are finding yourself struggling with the preparation and marketing processes each year then it may be time to consider selling your holiday home, especially if its value has increased recently.