Setting Goals to Grow Your Rental Business

How many of your New Year’s resolutions have you broken already? On average, people keep their goals in mind for a little over a month, but revert back to old habits sometime in early February. 

But that doesn’t have to be the case for landlords! Whether you want to improve the impression you make on new tenants or grow your portfolio, our top tips will help you figure out the best goals for you and how you can keep on top of them.

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What is your ultimate landlord goal?

In order to make your plans for the year ahead, it’s important to understand why you became a landlord. What is your long term goal for your investment?

  • Retirement fund. You may be planning to sell off your properties when you’re ready to retire and live off the profit, or you may be working towards building a rental income you can live off in the future
  • Becoming a full-time landlord. You may be working towards building an income that allows you to quit your day job and become a landlord full time
  • Not sure yet. Maybe you became a landlord by accident, or decided to invest in property, without a clear future goal in mind. But now you have the investment, it’s time to figure out what you want from it, so you can work towards it

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What goals should landlords set?

Once you know what your ultimate goal is, it’s time to set some more specific goals to help get you there. So here are some things you can do this year to work towards a larger goal :

  • Invest in new properties. If you’re looking to grow your rental income or future sales profit, this will mean growing your portfolio to increase that income. This could mean speaking to a mortgage advisor about remortgaging an existing property, to free up cash for another one 
  • Improve your existing portfolio. When was the last time you updated your properties? Renters are pretty discerning these days, so have high expectations. Updating and renovations can be expensive, but we’ve got some tips to help you plan and save for it!
  • Get on top of paperwork. Take a couple of hours out of your week to sit down and make sure your legal certification is all up-to-date. Gas Safety checks are only valid for a year, so check when yours expires and put a reminder in your calendar. EPCs last 10 years, but if you’ve made any improvements to your property that might affect your rating – remember, you should be aiming for an EPC rating A – you should get a new one as tenants’ are looking for eco-friendly properties that will have a positive impact on their bills. Finally, EICRs need to be updated every 5 years, but with such a long shelf life, it’s easy to forget about them, so check in and make a note of when you’ll need to update it!
  • Get covered. Have you protected yourself in the event of missed rent or emergency? It can seem like an unnecessary expense – until you find yourself in need of it! Make sure you have Home Emergency Insurance on all of your rental properties, so you can respond to emergencies as quickly as possible. Rent Guarantee Insurance will remove the worry about rent arrears. This is a powerful combination that will protect your income and investment
  • Put systems in place. Take the time to set up reminders for renewals, checks on your property and when tenancies expire. Put these in your calendar, so you get an automatic reminder and make sure you have all the documentation you need saved in a central location like our document storage tool
  • Go self-managed. You might work with a lettings agent and are thinking about going self-managed instead, this saves you money (which you could re-invest in useful insurances!) and gives you a lot more control over your rentals. Do some research to find out how easy it can be to list your property yourself and what legislation and regulation you need to be on top of (our webinars are a great resource for this!)

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How to ensure you stick to your goals?

It’s easy to set goals, but it’s harder to stick to them over the course of several months or a year. How can you keep your eyes on the prize and keep moving forward?

  • Create accountability. Consider sharing your goals in a online landlord community group, where you can get support and encouragement from fellow landlords. Once you’ve said it out loud to friends or in a public forum, you are more likely to stick to it
  • Be flexible. Life happens! The best laid plans don’t always work out the way we want them too, so it’s important to be flexible with your plans should you need to be. Checking in regularly makes this a lot easier, as you can course correct as you go
  • Keep your goal in mind. It can feel overwhelming to be viewing properties every weekend or tackling a mountain of paperwork, but remember why you are doing this. Keep that easy retirement or becoming your own boss dream in mind and you can’t go wrong!

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