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What is a ‘good’ letting arrangement?

Mark Blakeway, Head of Lettings at The Grantley Group, explains why personality is as important as proof of income.
We have a variety of properties on the books at Grantley – from contemporary town-centre apartments in Guildford to country cottages in the beautiful Surrey Hills – offering something for everyone. However, while most tenants are well aware of the paperwork they’ll need to rent a home, and homeowners are careful to ensure they are providing a safe, comfortable environment for their tenants, we often find that the relationship between landlord and resident is equally important.
Of course, income is the first factor that landlords will look at when considering prospective tenants. As a rule of thumb, referencing agencies will require the tenant’s yearly income to be 30 times the monthly rent. For example, if the rental cost of a property is £1,000 per month, the tenant will need to be bringing in £30,000 a year. For people who are self-employed, it’s important to also provide information about the type of work they do and the sustainability of their income. It’s even better if the occupiers have an income that doesn’t just cover their rent, but enables them to live comfortably even after this outgoing is accounted for.
It’s not all about the money, of course. Long-term tenants are always attractive, unless the property is specifically available for a shorter period. Having people (and furniture) moving in and out of a house or apartment every 12 months creates more wear and tear, and therefore more maintenance.
For both landlords and occupiers, despite management agencies and property companies handling all the paperwork, communication and trust is the fundamental basis for a successful tenancy. A good first impression is key, and honesty and decisive action throughout the process, from both parties, creates goodwill and confidence. It is this relationship which can make everything easier should an unexpected disruption crop up, such as a new baby in a home not quite big enough for one, or the break-up of a couple who haven’t lived together before and find the arrangement doesn’t suit them.
Good communication therefore, is vital; it will avoid property and relationship degradation.

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