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Landlords’ worries

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A recent survey by The Mortgage Lender has revealed the kind of worries likely to keep landlords awake at night.

The biggest of those worries – affecting as many as three in every ten landlords – is the need to maintain their properties. Tenants report problems with such things as water leaks, ovens and boilers.

November is the most common month for the reporting of such issues and the average landlord experiences four maintenance problems a year – with one in ten properties facing as many as seven such issues.

In addition to care and maintenance of their property, landlords also had serious worries about finding tenants, the anti-social behaviour of some tenants, and income tax liabilities.

Landlords seem relatively relaxed about other potentially important issues: only one in twenty, for example, expressed serious concerns about the impact of Brexit and only one in 50 were worried about the need for more enhanced underwriting when insuring a portfolio of let properties.

One in four landlords, on the other hand, rest easy at night with no issues at all to keep them awake.

It may come as no surprise that landlords worry most about the care and maintenance of their property. Maintenance costs need to be set against rental income as a measure of profitability – and many of those costs may be quite high. Replacing a middle of the range central heating boiler, for instance, might set back a landlord as much as £2,000, while even a quite basic cooker and oven is likely to cost around £350.