How do we run a successful HMO? It’s a good question and one that Concord Property is asked quite a bit by landlords looking for an agent to manage their House of Multiple Occupation (HMO).
Specialising in HMOs since 2007, we’ve accrued a lot of experience in setting up and managing HMOs of all sizes – from properties with three or four tenants, to much larger lets with 14+ tenants.
At any one time, we’re involved in around 20 HMOs and this number is growing all the time as landlords turn to the HMO model for a good investment.
The value of excellent relationships
One of the biggest challenges in managing an HMO is that a landlord is not just letting to one person or family, but multiple people. While this can mean that voids and arrears are minimised, the success of an HMO relies on the managing agent having strong attention to detail and excellent tenant relationships.
In our experience, there’s not a single action that makes for a successful HMO. It’s a collection of things, including:
- Placing the right tenants (people who we’ve taken the time to get to know and prepare for HMO living)
- Making sure the property is well-maintained
- Quickly resolving any problems
- Managing rental expectations
- Staying on top of rent collection
- Remaining in close contact with tenants and landlords
- Quickly finding a replacement for when a tenant chooses to move on
Maintaining a flexible service
By their very nature, HMOs tend to have more requirements than a standard let, which is why it’s important, as the managing agent, that we are contactable beyond the typical 9 am-5 pm. For example, if a tenant wants to view a property during the evening or at the weekend, which is quite often the case, we’ll arrange this. Tenants can also reach us at all hours to report an urgent fault or problem.
As more people use shared appliances such as washing machines, ovens, doors, you can expect slightly more maintenance calls with an HMO property, but none of this fazes us. We’ve established a loyal and comprehensive community of contractor specialists who we can call on, at any time, to lend a hand.
Many contractors have been by our side for 20+ years. In fact, we’re so close to them that we’d almost class them as family!
A team landlords can trust, without question
With Concord as your chosen agent, you’ll never have to worry about your HMO. Having successful HMOs darted throughout Essex and Suffolk, we are regularly in the area and with maintenance checks and viewings. So we’ll be in and out most weeks without disturbing tenants, although tenants know us by first name and love to say hello.
For complete peace of mind, we also make sure that legal compliance checks happen exactly when they should and that all activity is recorded.
Is an HMO a good investment?
If managed in the right way, HMOs can make a better financial investment than a standard let because:
- Rental yields can be up to three times higher
- Rental voids are minimised (if you have one tenant leave, you still collect rent from the remaining tenants)
- There’s less exposure to arrears (for the same reason as above)
Want to know more about running a successful HMO?
If you’re just thinking about setting up an HMO (licensed or unlicensed) we’re more than happy to chat through the best way to get the most from your investment. If you like, we can explore your options over a cuppa. We’ll walk you through registration, expected costs, health and safety requirements and finding the right tenants.
Once you’re ready to get started, we’ll:
- Promote your HMO and find tenants who we know will enjoy HMO living
- Manage the daily running of your HMO
- Maintain compliance with council, fire and health & safety requirements
- Make sure all utility bills are paid
- Ensure rents are collected on time and that deposits are protected
- Maintain the security of your HMO
- Build great relationships with tenants and resolve any issues before they become problems
- Establish house rules and delicately manage any problems
- Manage your investment and minimise rental voids
- And so much more!
We do not charge for advice, so please feel free to contact us on 01206 393213 for a chat about setting up a successful HMO or transferring your existing HMO to us. We’re always happy to help.