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Should I Furnish?

Landlords often ask us whether or not it is worth furnishing a property they intend to let. “Furnishing” usually means everything required to live reasonably comfortably in a property, including white goods, with the exception of bedding and personal possessions.

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question. Tenants come in all shapes and sizes, so it is worth considering the type of tenant you expect to attract, as this will usually determine where it will be worth furnishing, or offering an unfurnished blank canvas:

The Student: By definition, students are usually young and will likely have been living with parents until they start university. They come with books, bedding, smartphone and a few kitchen utensils. Students will almost certainly require furniture, although they may not expect the highest quality. They are likely to enjoy gaming, so large screen HD TV will pay dividends.

The Professional Couple: A young couple may be combining two single homes and are likely to have items such as kitchenware, TV and occasional items of furniture, but they may still appreciate the option of larger items such as sofas, bed and wardrobes. It can be worthwhile being flexible here and offering to add or remove furniture to suit.

The Executive: Houses, or more usually city apartments, that are likely to let to a corporate executive will almost certainly need to be furnished – and to a high standard. The tenant (or their employer) will usually pay a premium for turn-key medium-term well-furnished accommodation.

The Family: An established family is likely already to have everything they need and might appreciate the freedom and space to put their own furniture in place.

Generally speaking, and with the exception of the executive let, furnishing a property does not necessarily increase the rent chargeable, but can slightly widen its appeal. However, tenants who rent an unfurnished property tend to stay longer as they are likely to have an entire household of belongings, suggesting that they regard your property as their home and are not just “passing through”.

Most of our tenancies are longer term (24m+) in order to meet with our landlords’ preferences in reducing risk and maximising yield. Please do let us know if you’d like us to advise on the likely tenant, and consequent furnishing requirements, of your own investment property. No charge or obligation, and sincere, good advice offered with a smile!

© Copyright 2021 Richard Rawlings except as excluded under licence.

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