There is a lot to do and plenty to think about before you rent out your property. First impressions count for everything when it comes to property, so it’s vital your home looks its best for potential tenants. Maintaining this condition for all your viewings will give you the best chance of letting your home and achieving the best possible price.

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The external view

This is the first view your potential tenants will have of your property, so you should focus on optimising its appearance. Remember to have this all done before the agent takes the marketing photographs.

  • Wash down the front door and make sure the house number is clearly visible
  • Tidy up the front and back garden (weed, trim hedges, add some new plants if necessary, clear any dead or unsightly plants, mow and fix any damaged lawn)
  • Repair cracks, holes or blemishes in the driveway or walls
  • Give the window frames and door a lick of paint if they need it
  • Keep rubbish and rubbish bins out of sight

The interior

  • Clean thoroughly from top to bottom - carpets, floors, windows, fixtures and fittings
  • De-clutter and create more space by moving some furniture into storage, tidy away or remove unnecessary objects such as books and ‘knick-knacks’. Clear out cupboards and wardrobes of non-essential items
  • Make minor repairs - fix leaky taps and cracks in the walls, replace broken or crooked tiles, replace burned-out light bulbs and make sure everything works!
  • Eradicate unpleasant odours like pet smells and cigarette smoke
  • Decorate rooms if required - a quick coat of paint can re-energise the appearance of a room.
  • Make sure all aspects of your property are up to scratch and meet all of the required standards to give you the best chance of finding the right tenants and achieving the best price.

The garden

The garden should be neat and well maintained and with any fences in good order. As a general rule, tenants can only be expected to carry out basic gardening duties; mowing the lawn and keeping beds weed-free. The state of the garden will be reflected in the inventory at the start of the tenancy. It may be prudent to budget for a spring and autumn clear-up if the garden is high maintenance.

It may seem like a lot of work, but with time, energy and even a bit of money spent now, it could really make the difference to how quickly you let your property and how much rent you can charge. The lettings market is highly competitive and tenants can afford to be choosy so set the right impression from the start.