Letting your empty home

Last Updated: 3 April 2024

If you are thinking about renting out an empty property you will need to consider the responsibilities of being a landlord and the costs involved.

Advice on being a Landlord

You’ll need to make sure that your empty home meets certain housing standards. Remember that as a landlord you are running a business. You’ll need money for maintenance and repair of the home. One benefit of being the landlord yourself is that you are in control and do not have to pay any fees to an agent. If you are not sure what rent to charge you can check the average rent for a similar type of property in a similar location. One way to do this is to ask local letting agents.

To find a tenant you could advertise in a local paper, in a shop or online. However you will need to carry out proper checks on potential tenants and get a tenancy agreement drawn up. If you do not choose your tenant carefully, it could end up costing you a lot of money. You are responsible if something goes wrong. 

There is a lot of helpful information for landlords on the internet, and the following may help start your research:

North West Landlords Association (NWLA)

National Residential Landlords Association (NRLA)

NICEIC Electrical contractors an independent body for electrical installation matters.

Gas safe register is the official list of gas engineers who are qualified to work safely and legally on gas appliances.

Federation of Master builders (FMB)

National Federation of Builders (NFB)

British Property Federation (BPF)

Tenancy deposit protection

If you rent your empty property on an assured shorthold tenancy you have to place your tenant’s deposit in a tenancy deposit protection (TDP) scheme. You need to put the deposit in the scheme within 30 days of getting it.

Using a letting agent  

You can use a letting agent to rent out your empty home for you. They will charge you a fee for doing this. Letting agents offer different services. Here are some things they can do for you:

  • find a tenant
  • check tenant references
  • right to rent
  • look after tenancy agreements 
  • collect rent for you
  • full management of the property

Bear in mind that if you choose full management it can cost you between 7 to 12% of the rent. It’s a good idea for you to do your research carefully to find a good letting agent.

Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA)