Some landlords wait longer than four months for a tenant

Wednesday 30th November 2016

New research carried out by the Nottingham Building Society (The Nottingham) has revealed that over one in five landlords have to wait more than four months before signing up their first tenants.
Its UK-wide study of landlords found that some 21% have had to wait four months or longer after completing their buy-to-let mortgage before they have got paying tenants in place. 
While 53% of landlords have paying tenants within the first few months of buying their first buy-to-let property, a significant minority are facing major delays – which, in turn, is placing severe pressure on their finances. 
Setting up as a landlord – on top of arranging mortgage finance – is not cheap, with the average landlord having to shell out £2,000 before finding tenants. 
However, The Nottingham's study did find that one in three landlords (35%) are able to spend less than £1,000. 
The costs don't stop after purchasing a property, either, with 62% of those surveyed having to redecorate or renovate properties before renting them out. For 28%, this redecoration works took two weeks or more. 
What's more, the research showed that the average landlord spends approximately £700 a year per property on maintenance. Some 37%, however, say they spend less than £500.
Nonetheless, once the property is occupied with tenants the pressure subsides considerably. In the last 12 months landlords only had one month where they had no tenants – commonly known as void periods – while a reassuring 45% said they had encountered no void periods whatsoever. 
“Becoming a landlord remains attractive for thousands of people, but it is clear landlords need to think carefully before making the decision and also to plan ahead,” Stephen Reade, Lettings Operations Manager at The Nottingham, said. 
“Having to wait four months or more before getting tenants in can put a strain on finances and landlords need to ensure they have spare money to invest in their property over and above basic mortgage costs.”

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