If you invest in property, you’ll know that there’s a lot to think about. From the location to the property type, different choices you make can change the direction your investment takes. One thing that’s crucial to consider before putting your buy to let property on the rental market is whether you’re going to offer it furnished or unfurnished. There are benefits to both, and different definitions of each term. To help you get better informed, take a look at this guide to help you decide whether you should furnish your buy to let property.
With furnished properties, the landlord supplies the rental property fully decorated with essential furniture pieces like a sofa, dining table, bed and other items. The furniture the landlord uses belongs to them, allowing them to either keep it in the property for each new tenant that moves in or take it for their own home if they need to.
There are several benefits to offering a furnished property. Many tenants prefer the ease and hassle-free aspect of moving into a property that’s already equipped with everything they need. Not only does this save the tenant from spending money to buy all the furniture themselves, but they also don’t need to arrange for all of their items to be moved when they move into a new property. Tenants like young professionals and students are likely to seek out furnished properties, especially if the furniture used fits their tastes, and the property itself is decorated well.
Many property companies offer furniture packs that can be purchased alongside the investment, or sometimes included with the full price. Some opportunities from RW Invest come with high-quality furniture included, helping you offer a stylish and modern fully furnished new-build property to your tenants.
While furnished properties can help you cater to a certain tenant, some tenants prefer their rental property to come unfurnished. This is the case for tenants who like to personalise their rental as much as they can but aren’t able to permanently change the property by painting and decorating.
By moving in furniture that they’ve chosen themselves, the tenant may feel like they’re more ‘at home’ and choose to stay longer since they’ve spent money and time perfecting the space. In some cases, a tenant might simply have lived in an unfurnished property before moving into yours. Therefore, rather than paying for storage, they’d rather move the furniture they last used into their new rental.
Even when an investor offers their property unfurnished, the tenant is still expected to provide essential items. White goods such as a fridge, freezer, cooker, and washing machine are usually provided by the landlord even when the rest of the property is unfurnished. Other things like extractor fans for the kitchen and bathroom should be considered, as these aren’t considered part of furnishings but will make the tenancy easier and more hassle-free for both you and the tenant.
Another option could be to offer the property part-furnished. This means that the property is somewhere between furnished and unfurnished, with the landlord supplying certain items but not enough to complete the furniture in each room. This is useful for tenants who are happy enough using some of the landlord’s pieces of furniture, like a dining table, but would prefer to buy their own sofa’s.
Which is right for me?
Whether or not you want to offer your rental property furnished is completely up to you. Think about the type of tenants your property is likely to attract, and whether they’d appreciate a furnished or unfurnished property. If you’re renting a city-centre based residential apartment, it’s likely that young professionals will be renting your property. Young professionals see living in a well-presented property with high-quality decor and features as important attributes, and would therefore, appreciate a flat that’s been fully furnished in modern, stylish pieces. The same goes for students, who don’t tend to have the funds to buy their own furniture.
If you secure a desirable tenant but they decide they’d like to buy a few of their own pieces, you could work out some flexible arrangements that both of you are happy with. These arrangements could be for you to keep certain pieces in your own home, or temporarily store them during the tenancy. If these don’t work for you, you could always offer the tenant the chance to buy the furniture from you. This way they can do what they like with the items such as selling them, and you’ll still have some money in your pocket to buy the furniture back for future tenants if need be.