Once you’ve analysed your product and your target audience, the next step in creating a business plan for your rental property is to check out the competition. How many properties similar to yours are up for rent nearby? Knowing how unique your property is for the area will help you establish how best to differentiate and market it.
For example, in large new build developments a lot of flats with similar finishes and floorplans can hit the rental market at the same time – driving down rents. If you’re buying, steer clear for this reason. But if you already own such a flat, ensure that you furnish and present it so it stands out from the crowd. Plus, in this scenario it’s particularly important to get your pricing levels just right.
» Flowers knock out new build competition
When Bruno bought his canal-side flat in Northolt, west London, it was one of the first to be completed in its new build development. Eight years on, he and Sally, his new wife, left the country to study in America and put the two-bedroom flat up for rent. By now, the development had become vast, with dozens of similar flats on the rental market.
However, because Bruno chose his flat right at the start of the development, it had one thing going for it: its garden right beside the canal. Bruno and Sally worked hard to make their garden look its best, planting bright flowers and waiting until they were in full bloom before having it professionally photographed. They also included their stylish leather sofa and decluttered the flat before viewings. It paid off: it let above market rate and never stood empty.