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Renting out your home as a holiday let

There may be times of the year where your home is left unoccupied, in such cases it could be possible to make money from your home by renting it out as a holiday let.

Letting your home out as a holiday let could be an easy way to make some cash to cover running your property or to fund your own holiday or travels.

Opening your home for short periods of time is, for many people, a great way to boost income, however, if you know you are going to be away for a longer period of time, for example due to a temporary work placement, it may be better to opt for a short-term rental agreement. This will minimise hassle of changing tenants and having to be on hand to clean and prepare your property for new guests.

What should you consider before renting out your home?

Whether for a weekend, a week or a month, there are important things to consider before you leap in and rent out your home…

  • Insurance

If you are going to let your home via an accommodation finder such as Airbnb, you may find insurance is offered as part of the fees you’ll pay. If you are finding the holidaymakers yourself, be sure to get in touch with your insurance provider as your current policy may not cover damage caused by short-let tenants.

  • Mortgage

When you took out your mortgage you may have already been planning to let your property on a short-term basis and in which case have chosen a mortgage lender that allows for this. If this is a new endeavour however, you may find that your mortgage does not allow for holiday lets. Call your mortgage provider to assess the situation and if you are in the process of looking for a mortgage, speak to an independent mortgage advisor for advice on lenders that could meet your needs.

  • Promoting your property

There is a growing number of websites and apps from which you can advertise, for a fee, your property. The benefit here is that they will find, and vet, guests for you. This does come at a cost however and you will pay a percentage fee for the service.

Whether you choose to promote your property via a holiday let finder or through your own personal channels, be sure to get your marketing right from the outset. Take plenty of photographs so people know exactly what they are getting, be clear also as to what is included in the let. If certain rooms are out-of-bounds let people know up front to prevent any disappointment which could lead to negative reviews.

  • Tax implications

There are a number of government schemes which could offer tax benefits when letting your home. Allowances vary depending on the scheme, so it is best to speak to a financial advisor or contact HMRC for specific advice relating to your circumstances.

  • Getting ready

Preparing your home for a holiday let can be time consuming. You will need to ensure rooms are clean and ready for guests and depending what you have agreed to, may need to provide made up beds, clean towels and a welcome pack containing essentials such as milk, tea and coffee. You may also need to be close by to give your house guests the key to your home.

Ahead of their arrival it is also wise to lock away, or even better, remove from the property anything that is valuable or that you do not want your house guests to see.