Many landlords consider family tenants the Holy Grail with recent research by the National Landlords Association (NLA) revealing that properties rented to families take up the least amount of property management time when compared to other types of tenants.
The findings came from more than 1,000 responses to the latest quarterly landlord research panel from the NLA, which asked them to estimate how much time they spent on property management, including dealing with tenant queries and property maintenance requests, and general business administration.
The study suggests that landlords who rent to families and young couples spend on average one full working day a week - eight hours - on property management.
In contrast, the NLA says landlords who let to migrant workers, benefit recipients, or who have executive lets, can expect to spend up to 12 hours per week.
Richard O'Neill, Romans’ lettings managing director, said: “Renting a home is a practical, flexible and beneficial option for thousands of families across the country. It offers a simple route for parents looking to live within a school’s catchment area or close to a support network of family and friends.
“Landlords should aim to appeal to this growing market by offering the type of homes families are demanding. Our evidence shows families are typically reliable, stable and long-term tenants - qualities that should make them highly desirable to landlords.”
O’Neil highlights the following factors every landlord should consider before investing in a property with the intention of letting it to a family.
+ Location, location, location
Location is key for families. Most will want to be within the catchment area of a great school and close to local amenities such as parks, playgrounds, leisure centres and shops. Choosing a family-friendly area is a must for ensuring a family home is continuously occupied and achieves a good rent.
+ A family home
Landlords should think about the type of home a family will be looking for. Two, three and four-bedroom houses with plenty of space, including a garden, are most popular. Families require a practical home so consider features such as parking and storage space.
Families want to feel at home - and when they do, they tend to stay longer and look after the property well. Landlords are advised to be as flexible as possible when it comes to issues such as decorating and keeping pets. Having an addendum drawn up alongside the tenancy agreement is the simplest way to state what they will allow and ensures the boundaries are clear.
O’Neil added: “The key to getting the most from this growing market is finding a property with excellent investment potential in the right area - such as one of our top five places to bring up a family - and marketing it correctly to attract the highest possible rent.”