Knowing when to invest in the private rented sector is half the battle when it comes to finding success. Put your money in at the right time, and you will find you always have tenants and new applicants around, allowing you to handpick the right ones and make a strong return. Whereas putting your money in at the wrong time can leave you with long void periods between tenants that mean you are not making any profit at all.
So is now the right time to invest? If we consider that last factor as vitally important - and it is - then it certainly seems that this is the case. According to reports published this month by Paragon Mortgages, landlords in the UK are now enjoying some of the lowest rental voids ever seen.
It means that homes put up for rent are being snapped up almost as soon as they come to market, making sure that landlords are rarely without a tenant, giving them a steady income that makes for a very impressive return.
It said that at the start of 2015, landlords were seeing void periods as low as 2.6 weeks on average. This is down from the 2.8 weeks that was in evidence at the end of last year, and extends the period that landlords have gone without seeing void periods averaging longer than 3.5 weeks to 13 years.
The lowest void period ever recorded in the UK was 2.5 weeks back in the mid noughties, and it seems that if the rental market continues on the trajectory it is on at the moment, with voids dropping since the start of 2014, we could soon see this average beaten.
"Although void periods have fluctuated slightly over the past year they have continued to remain low, peaking at 2.8 weeks," said John Heron, managing director of Paragon Mortgages.
"It is encouraging to see that in the fourth quarter of 2014 void periods reduced to the lowest point recorded since 2012, only slightly above the lowest average void period reported by our research at 2.5 weeks," he added.
Paragon said it expects to see the continued fall of void periods for the majority of 2015 as well, so it certainly appears that now is the right time to invest. Rising demand means less time spent without a tenant, and that can only improve returns for those investing in the rental sector.
Do you own rental property in London? We believe that landlords should be able to see all the benefits of buy-to-let ownership without the hassle. For more information about how we can deal with your property rentals, visit our landlords page or call us on 0203 355 0819.
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