Furnished or unfurnished? What does 'furnished' include?

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  • DrunkenJedi
    replied
    Originally posted by Drpepper
    Ah, sounds great! Is this a common problem? Thanks for the other advice.
    Its difficult to say how often tenancies don't end when the LL wants and how many LLs have to go through the courts to gain eviction of a tenant who won't leave.
    While it isn't the majority, its hugely beneficial that you avoid getting into such a situation.
    To that end, I would advise you to use a reputable local letting agent if this is your first time.
    The chances of you getting a bad tenant go up quite a bit when you are a novice and again, if you need to get someone in quick.

    If you do go it alone, use a tenant reference agency rather than looking at bits of paper yourself, which can be faked.
    Even if you do go it alone, I would speak with a few letting agents on how to best prepare the home for the market you are aiming at. They are often a wealth of information.
    Make sure all your paperwork is in order and even if you don't furnish the property, get a professional inventory done. It can save you lots of money and troubles and the cost is quite small relatively.

    Read, read and read all you can and make sure you understand everything about what you are embarking on before you commit to anything.
    If in doubt, its better to have an empty property than have a tenant who is causing you trouble/losses and doesn't want to leave.

    Regarding furnished/unfurnished - in my experience, there is little difference in rent between the two, if any at all.
    The market rent for your home and its location will largely determine what rent you can charge however it is furnished and however wonderful it is.

    Leave a comment:


  • theartfullodger
    replied
    In your shoes try the option of naming the price you want unfurnished, but offer "furnished also available". Then if someone's interested & you can face the trip to Ikea & a day putting it together you might get a good deal, and you can let them have a say in what furniture they get. Prices depend so much on what people are after.

    If possible show people the empty place - it always make it look bigger.

    PS Just because the tenancy says 6 months don't bank on getting it back then: An "interesting" tenant can delay things, say, 3-4 months...

    Leave a comment:


  • Drpepper
    replied
    Furnished or unfurnished

    First off, I'm new here so Hi.

    Have just purchased a property that I intend to let out on AST. Which would be better, letting it furnished or unfurnished. Reason I am thinking furnished is that we may at some point wish to live there ourselves for a while, or after six months stop letting it and use it as a holiday home. What % extra rent could I expect (if any), and what problems have you guys had with letting furnished?

    Any help and advice would be very welcome.

    Leave a comment:


  • Springfields
    replied
    The majority of tenants will expect the main appliances, washing machine, cooker, fridge freezer to be supplied to a property. However, if you are flexible in terms of what you are willing to supply and the tenant requires an additional item(s) you can always look to source them on request.

    If we have flexible Landlords they tend to charge between £25-£100 extra PCM for furnishing a property, this is dependant on what items they need to purchase new, how much they have to source etc. Figures need to be sensible and are negotiated with the tenant prior to agreeing to take the property.

    Leave a comment:


  • Guest's Avatar
    Guest replied
    Originally posted by theartfullodger View Post
    Don't think that's how HMRC see things... see


    http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/manuals/pimmanual/PIM3200.htm



    In my experience most people expect cooker, F/F, washing machine in unfurnished property but some tenants can come with some white goods, especially if having left their own (owned) home. Being flexible (both ways) or inventory & rent can help ensure you get the tenant you want (in all senses...)
    But the HMRC, which is only concerned with the tax aspect of this area, does not define what furnished or unfurnished actually means.

    Even your definition is dependent on other factors.

    Then you have the situation where you have provided all those items in the HRMC/your list and then you get a tenant who is going to bring their own of this, that and the other and so you have to take some items out - how are you then going to define your property in the tenancy agreement and with the tax man?
    It gets tricky.

    Until proper definitions are made, its going to be upto each landlord to decide.

    Best not to try an make a point where non

    Leave a comment:


  • theartfullodger
    replied
    Originally posted by HairyLandlord View Post
    there is no agreed definition of what unfurnished or furnished mean, so this matter is entirely upto you to decide on and tenants these days come with varying amounts of possessions.
    Don't think that's how HMRC see things... see


    http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/manuals/pimmanual/PIM3200.htm

    A furnished property is one that is capable of normal occupation without the tenant having to provide their own beds, chairs, tables, sofas and other furnishings, cooker etc. The provision of nominal furnishings will not meet this requirement. If the accommodation isn’t furnished, or only partly furnished, the 10% wear and tear allowance isn’t due.
    In my experience most people expect cooker, F/F, washing machine in unfurnished property but some tenants can come with some white goods, especially if having left their own (owned) home. Being flexible (both ways) or inventory & rent can help ensure you get the tenant you want (in all senses...)

    Leave a comment:


  • Guest's Avatar
    Guest replied
    Originally posted by Chipie View Post
    I'm new to the letting market and am in the process of purchasing two properties, one with tenants already aboard and one with tenants to find.

    Both will be let on the basis of unfurnished but my query is what essential items are still required to be supplied by me even as an unfurnished let? I am assuming that a cooker and fridge freezer are essentials, but have also read that it is good practice to supply things such as a vacuum cleaner, lawn mower etc to encourage the tenant to adequately maintain the property.

    Are we withon our rights to negotiate an extra over on the monhly rent for a washer and dryer for example?

    Thanks in advance.
    While there is a legal minimum that a LL must provide in a rental home (property is secure from elements, sanitation/bathing and water/space heating), there is no agreed definition of what unfurnished or furnished mean, so this matter is entirely upto you to decide on and tenants these days come with varying amounts of possessions.
    I would however speak to several letting agents to see what your competitor landlords are doing and use that as a basis to form your own decision, since that is what your potential tenants are doing when comparing available homes.

    In addition, I would also be prepared to negotiate on additional items, especially if its to get a tenant who particular appeals to you or who is looking to stay long term or who appeals in other ways.
    While the rental market remains iffy/tricky/vulnerable, it pays to be flexible.

    Finally, remember that the more you supply, the more you have to maintain.

    Leave a comment:


  • Brb
    replied
    Depends on the property really. If I was renting a flat I would probably want fridge/freezer, washer/dryer and oven but if I was renting a house all I want is an oven.

    Leave a comment:


  • Chipie
    replied
    Essentials for un-furnished let?

    I'm new to the letting market and am in the process of purchasing two properties, one with tenants already aboard and one with tenants to find.

    Both will be let on the basis of unfurnished but my query is what essential items are still required to be supplied by me even as an unfurnished let? I am assuming that a cooker and fridge freezer are essentials, but have also read that it is good practice to supply things such as a vacuum cleaner, lawn mower etc to encourage the tenant to adequately maintain the property.

    Are we withon our rights to negotiate an extra over on the monhly rent for a washer and dryer for example?

    Thanks in advance.

    Leave a comment:


  • jeffrey
    replied
    Originally posted by Ericthelobster View Post
    One other reason to go 'unfurnished' is that if the property is ever empty, you typically get 100% council tax** for 6 months, whereas with furnished you don't (I think with most councils you just get the same 25% discount as a second-home owner).
    **- i.e. 100% Council Tax discount.

    Leave a comment:


  • Ericthelobster
    replied
    One other reason to go 'unfurnished' is that if the property is ever empty, you typically get 100% council tax for 6 months, whereas with furnished you don't (I think with most councils you just get the same 25% discount as a second-home owner).

    Leave a comment:


  • rachel230
    replied
    E-bay is amazing!! I furnished my flat (which is in a good area and commands a good rent) through buying on ebay. I got fantastic top quality stuff from one ebayer in South Kensington who was moving abroad and wanted rid of everything pronto!

    Rachel

    Leave a comment:


  • stoker48
    replied
    Settee - buying from L A "contacts"

    Thanks for this.

    I will need to provide a settee and table and chairs. The two Lettings agents I have approached (who are coming on Weds to view / sign me up) say they have "contacts" and can probably get one for a few hundred pounds.

    Has anyone experience of buying from a letting agents "contacts". They said dont buy expensive as furniture will need to be replaced every 3 years or so.

    Thats fine, but would it be better for me to try and source myself or can the LA really get me a good deal? And if I buy myself from a cheaper store (ie leather settee for say £350) am I really wasting my money on something that wont last?

    Many thanks

    Leave a comment:


  • Poppy35
    replied
    Originally posted by Ericthelobster View Post
    Nothing at all - the terms 'part-furnished', 'furnished' etc have no legal standing as such; it's up to you to see for yourself what's included when you view the property.
    100% agree.

    Unfurnished in my "world" means a cooker and nothing else, in other towns/cities it means nothing at all.

    Leave a comment:


  • theartfullodger
    replied
    However HMRC will have a view...

    I think providing one small bathroom mat would not satisfy the Revenue...

    http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/manuals/pimmanual/pim3200.htm
    .
    A furnished property is one that is capable of normal occupation without the tenant having to provide their own beds, chairs, tables, sofas and other furnishings, cooker etc. The provision of nominal furnishings will not meet this requirement. If the accommodation isn’t furnished, or only partly furnished, the 10% wear and tear allowance isn’t due.
    .
    Cheers!

    Artful

    Leave a comment:

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