For a long time the choice of whether to furnish or not furnish rental accommodation has left landlords divided. There are practical pros and cons to both sides of the argument. Landlords don’t want to lose out on tenants who don’t want to have to buy furniture; neither do they want to alienate tenants who already have their own things.
However, when it comes down to the wire, it has recently been revealed that tenants are willing to pay significantly more for a home with furnishings included. A Countrywide report highlighted the importance of furnishing to potential tenants- on average, a furnished apartment can charge 8.1% more and a furnished house can expect 2.8% more than the same place but empty.
Money aside, furnished apartments also offer a host of additional benefits to landlords. For example on the whole, void periods tend to be reduced because tenants don’t need to organise removal companies, either taking their furniture in or out of the flat, which facilitates a quick change over and minimal losses of rent for the landlord.
Another advantage of furnished properties is how they appear when taking potential tenants on viewings. When considering a property, already having furniture, as well as more homely touches- a laid dining room table and a nicely made bed, allows tenants to imagine actually living there. On the other hand, an empty room may seem cold and less welcoming. Even if they have their own furniture, it is not always easy to picture it in an unfamiliar home, and this can leave potential tenants not choosing that property.
However, despite all the advantages of furnishing your property, it does not suit every type of tenant. It is crucial that a landlord thinks about what kind of tenant they expect to attract to their flat or house when making the decision of whether to invest in furniture for it.
Furnished properties favour students, who are unlikely to own any furniture or be able to pay for it, but will pay extra every month for rent. Young professionals are also attracted to already furnished properties so they can take advantage of the efficient move in procedure and go from property to property easier.
Nevertheless, if the property attracts a different clientele, perhaps a more settled couple or family, they are more likely to already have their own furniture and therefore will not have to make the most of the flexibility and not want to pay extra for a furnished property.
As for the professional opinion- Nick Gill, Lettings Manager of Intus Lettings, an innovative national lettings and management company noted, “The buoyant rental market really favours furnished properties at the moment as tenants are looking for the perfect houses and apartments to move into quickly.”
“We are certainly seeing more interest in our furnished properties at the moment, particularly when it comes to students and first-time renters who are newly moving out of the family household and who don’t have the money to completely furnish their new home.”
Regardless of whether you have furnished or unfurnished properties in your portfolio, the ease with which they are rented out can certainly be helped by using an experienced lettings agent.
Contact Intus Lettings today for advice on managing your portfolio and to take advantage of a fantastic introductory rate.