Wednesday 18 January 2017

Should I furnish my rental property in Clapham and/or surrounds?

I was talking to an investor the other day and they were looking to budget for a new purchase. We had discussed finishing touches, how to decorate, the spend on the build and then she popped the question. Maybe I should have expected it? “Should I let my property furnished or unfurnished, Jeroen?”

It took me by surprise as she had brought me several properties to manage over the last year and I knew they were in good order. I had however inherited them from another agent she used to use and I must admit I didn’t check the details of every letting as yet. Turns out that they were unfurnished! She had let unfurnished all this time! I was bound to notice when the time came for renewal as I would have noticed the rents were a bit light though.

Here’s the thing…

If you are letting a property in Clapham and surrounds, I would say this easily applies to zones 2-4 in general, then furnish them. Furnish them well. If you are letting to DSS tenants then they will be used to supplying everything, even down to their own white goods. However professional, working tenants, they’re a different kettle of fish. Take a stunning new build for example. If you take out the furniture, really you’re left with a carbon copy flat. Furniture and d├ęcor is how you differentiate. Supply cast-offs from your grandma’s loft? Do so at your peril. They used to say location, location location – now it’s presentation, presentation presentation! As long as the flat is clean, tidy and well-presented you are already ahead of the competition! I’m not saying spend thousands upon thousands on furniture. Take this as an example, one from my most recent project: The bedroom furniture including beds and mattresses were sourced under £2000. FOR ALL THREE BEDROOMS! These are solid pine and an orthopaedic mattress no less. Add a few quid for matching curtains and lamp.

You want top dollar for your rental? Break some eggs to make that omelette and by that I don’t mean break the bank. Look at items that LOOK expensive but are not expensive. Well if you want tenants you will have to furnish it… simple!

Professional tenants are more discerning. If you are looking to furnish your new property with cast offs of yesteryear you can say goodbye to rental success.

I hope you find this useful. Remember my name is Jeroen Hoppe, author of the Clapham Property Blog. Helping landlords and investors making the most of their investments in South London. If you need help or advice on making your investments more profitable email me on or search and follow the Clapham Property Blog on google, Facebook or LinkedIn.

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