Kyla Campbell (pictured), head of residential developments at Acorn Property Group, explains how the buy-to-let market has changed… and how everyone can become a hands-free landlord
Taxation and regulation have made it harder for the average person to make money from buy-to-let property investments. But there is another way to earn money from rental properties, without all the hassle that comes with being a landlord. Kyla Campbell (pictured), head of residential developments at Acorn Property Group, calls it ‘hands-free property investment’.
For more than 25 years, Acorn Property Group has been funding property developments and regenerating existing sites, to create a range of residential-led refurbishment and new build schemes.
Acorn Property Invest offers high net worth individuals and sophisticated investors fixed returns without the financial (and emotional) costs of being a landlord.
“I think the greatest risk to landlords is bad tenants,” says Campbell.
“I don’t think I can emphasise enough the amount of research, checks, guarantees, deposits you need to make and take because a bad tenant can wipe out a year’s income in the blink of an eye and a terrible tenant could literally just destroy your investment.”
Bad tenants represent one of the biggest risks to landlords, and finding the right people can take years and years. But by investing with Acorn Property Invest, armchair landlords can leave the risk management to the experts and enjoy the benefits of buy-to-let returns without the stress of managing a property.
Campbell notes that rental property trends are changing, and in order to get the best tenants, property owners must go the extra mile. That means maintaining properties to a very high standard, which can create unnecessary headaches for landlords. As a result, it is becoming more and more difficult for the average person to make steady returns from buy-to-let property ownership.
“We have seen a more professional approach to the property investments than previously,” she explains.
Read more: Buy to let is dead; long live buy to let
“We’re finding that landlords are more prepared to speculate to accumulate – they’re maintaining their properties to a much higher standard to minimise voids and retain decent tenants.”
Many landlords have full-time jobs and other responsibilities, which can make it harder to find the time to maintain these higher standards. While some opt to hire management companies to take care of property maintenance on their behalf, these fees can erode away at their rental yields.
This means that in order to benefit from the regularity of rental returns without the hassle of property management, prospective landlords must look further afield. And there are plenty of opportunities for savvy investors to find.
As the pandemic draws to an end, rental demand is set to rise again. Acorn’s properties are largely focused around rural and coastal areas in the south west, where the market has been especially strong.
Campbell predicts that property prices will continue to rise because of population growth and occupational trends.
It may be getting harder to be a landlord, but it has never been easier to be a hands free landlord, and benefit from the growth of the UK rental market today.
Read more: ESG trend presents opportunities for P2P