Furnishing a Buy-to-Let Property: Q&A with New Concept Furnishings
Choosing the right furniture for a buy-to-let property can be a tough task to take on. Fortunately, Galliard Homes properties come fully furnished free of charge with a furniture package supplied by New Concept Furnishings (NCF). We asked the team over at NCF to answer some common questions about furnishing a buy-to-let property.
Generally speaking, what pieces of furniture are essential/must-haves in a buy-to-let property?
There are some obvious pieces such as a sofa, bed(s) and dining table which are a necessity before a prospective tenant can move in. It is also easy to overlook the need for storage when furnishing a property yourself. Bedside tables and a chest of drawers will help to fill this requirement. Every New Concept Furnishings furniture package option includes the aforementioned items as a minimum. Window dressings such as blinds or curtains are also an absolute must.
What are the most important things to remember when furnishing a buy-to-let property?
There are two important things to take into consideration when including furniture in an apartment that is being used for buy to let purposes: the furniture must be stylish in order to attract a tenant but robust enough to stand up to heavy daily use. Combining these two requirements will help to maximise the property’s rental potential.
What is the difference between fully furnished and part-furnished?
Part furnished properties will carry an essential yet minimal furniture inventory consisting mainly of the must have ‘core’ pieces referred to previously.
A fully furnished property will include all of these items along with dressings and accessories such as cushions, artwork, lamps and window treatments which really make a property feel like home. Our fully furnished ‘Plus’ options also include kitchen, cleaning and bathroom packs as well as bedding which enable a new tenant to move straight into a new apartment from day one.
What are the important regulations when furnishing a buy-to-let property?
There are regulations in place which mean that the fabric and parts we provide must be made from flame retardant (FR) materials. Materials that are non-FR compliant are a cheaper alternative but all furniture and fabric supplied through New Concept Furnishings is FR compliant and adheres to the necessary manufacturing standards.
Are there any particular styles, fabrics or colours I should choose/avoid? Do’s and don’ts…
From our experience and the data we have collected, landlords would generally lean towards neutral colour options for the majority of furniture with perhaps a vibrant splash of colour from a feature chair and cushions to enhance the look. Neutral colour options will suit more potential occupants than a property which is furnished ‘a little out there’ as this may put people off taking on the property.
What are some good tips for making the space feel bigger and not cluttered?
One good tip would be to pick light coloured furniture (mainly whites and softer greys) which can pass off the illusion of creating a bigger space where darker furniture tones can create the opposite. The same advice can be said for window treatments; our sales team will regularly advise landlords against choosing darker fabric options in small living areas.
How much money should I spend on furnishing my buy-to-let property?
Everyone has different budgets. Our sales team would always offer the right advice to purchasers taking into account the location, the budget involved and other properties that have been furnished on the same site. Properties furnished in a development with one of our full ‘Plus’ options would increase the chance of quicker rental turnaround ahead of a more basic ‘Starter’ package.
What is a furniture package? What are the advantages?
A furniture package is a pre-designed and selected collection of furniture items that are supplied and installed in readiness for a prospective tenant or owner-occupier effectively to move into a readymade home.
The advantages of this quick turnaround have been proven time and time again, especially with new build rental properties.
With good planning, a professionally well thought out furniture package which is installed upon or prior to completion will always be more sought after than an unfurnished unit, thus reducing the dreaded void periods of lost rent to an absolute minimum.
Galliard Homes include furniture packages with the sale of many of their properties, and, when this is the case, they are installed before the property is handed over. This has led to countless instances where a tenancy has been agreed before or around the time of completion meaning rental returns can often be received before the first monthly mortgage payment is due, helping tremendously with cash flow.
Are there different furniture packages to choose from?
At present, we offer four furniture package designs that are suited for various budget points. Our Nordic and New Contemporary ranges are our entry-level furnishing options and offer a minimalistic modern feel. The mid-range Urban style offers a downtown feel with the use of reclaimed woods and metals along with distressed leathers. The Luxe package has been setup up for higher end properties, offering a more luxurious look than the other options but negating the need for unnecessary expense on interior designers.