Landlords - protect your home while tenants are away this summer
The children are off school, which means the summer break has officially begun and people are gearing up for the holidays. If you’re a landlord, this is a period where your rental property is more likely to be vacant.
Not only are empty properties prime targets for burglars, but they’re also more prone to damage. As Enfield’s top letting agents, here at Angels Sales & Lettings we provide some top tips for protecting your investment during the summer season.
Lock the doors
While this may sound obvious, many people tend to forget to lock their doors before leaving their house – let alone going on holiday.
Therefore, it’s a landlord’s responsibility to check all locks are safe before the start of each tenancy, provide tenants with working keys for the property and remind them to secure all lockable doors and windows before going away.
As the English weather is reaching its hottest point yet this year, your tenants may forget to lock their windows after they’ve closed them, so be sure to give them a gentle reminder.
You may also want to suggest to tenants that they close internal doors before going on holiday, as this will increase security and slow down the spread of fire if one was to occur while the property is unoccupied.
Motion-sensor lights and alarms are two effective methods of deterring thieves, but it doesn’t stop there; your tenants can also take some simple steps to ensure the property appears occupied.
For example, using light and radio timers is a cost-effective way to allude to the property being lived-in at all times.
And, depending on how long your tenants are away for and the amount of post they usually receive, it could be a good idea for their post to be redirected while they are gone. A pile of mail on the doormat is the biggest giveaway that a property is vacant.
As soon as your tenants inform you that they are going away, it’s a good idea to note down the dates and ask them whether you can make regular inspections during this period. This will give you the chance to ensure everything in the property is up to scratch and allow you to take care of any maintenance issues before they get worse.
If your tenants deny you access to the property, it’s worth asking them whether they can arrange for neighbours to check in from time to time instead.
However, remember to make sure that you or the neighbour knows the alarm code if the property has one – the last thing you want is to be caught setting off the alarm of your own property!
Check your policy
Depending on how long your tenants are away, you may need to inform your landlord insurance provider that your property is vacant. A good insurance provider will be able to easily swap your policy over from tenanted to unoccupied.
This is an important step for landlords, as your cover may become invalid if you do not inform your provider. Always check your insurance documents and protect your investment with a comprehensive policy.
As a local letting agent operating in Enfield and across London, we aim to make tenancies as smooth as possible for landlords. For more information about our services, please get in touch with us on: 0800 043 6678.
To find out how much you could be generating in rent each month, you can also request a free and instant online valuation.