Property Hawk the landlord's homepage since 2006
Free Tenancy Agreement FREE tenancy agreement
Free Landlord Software FREE landlord software
Home | Property Manager | Free ASTs | Landlord Forms | Mortgages | Insurance | Inventory | Magazine | Landlords Bible | Directory | Forum | Training | News / Blog |

Thursday, August 07, 2014

6 months rent up front

I have just marketed a property to let and have just had a tenant looking to take the property on a 6 month tenancy.  The letting agent came to me all excited that they had found a tenant looking to pay for the rent 6 months up front. BRILLIANT!!!!

Up front rent - the perfect solution?
From a landlords point of view a 6 month up front rental payment seems to answer all a landlords prayers.  Guaranteed rent for the entire tenancy.  The letting agent was practicality leaping off the chair thinking that I had won the equivalent to the landlord lottery. All a landlord needs to do is to issue their section 21 notice a couple of months before the end of the tenancy and then they are guaranteed the rent for the entire duration of the fixed term tenancy.  WRONG!

'Rental red herring'
It turns out after further investigation that the tenant was unemployed and had come into a small inheritance.  They clearly could afford the rent for a short period but then what?  If their money has gone and without any other source of income than at the end of 6 months what's going to happen?  They stop paying rent.  Even having issued a section 21 notice I know from personal experience that it could be anything from 3-4 months to legally get possession of my property back.  So  I might have got 6 months rent but perhaps only got 7 months out of the 10 in rent.  On top of this there maybe all the hassle of trying to get possession of the property.  Suddenly, the whole situation seems less attractive. So my advice to landlords is don't get carried away by the prospect of all that rent in one go.  Dig deeper and think carefully about the reasons why.  It may be a great opportunity but it also could turn out to be a poisoned rental chalice!

Ignorance costs - "Letting Essentials"


richard said...

There's also the risk of the property being used for means outside of the law, e.g. it turning into a cannabis farm. The landlord thinks whoopee 6, 12 months etc rent and no worries..
Don't be blinded by the upfront payment, as it may not be so you could have found out.

Pat said...

I had a retired couple pay a whole year upfront once and then another six months when that expired, while they waited for their new retirement property to be built. They were the best tenants I ever had.

I thought I'd cleaned the place well before they moved in, but they REALLY cleaned it. And they even used to pick up rubbish that was blowing around the pavement outside.

I was so delighted with them that I insisted on giving them the last 6 months for the price of 5. Happy days...I still miss them!!