CEO OF ONLINE LETTINGS AGENT UPAD.co.uk
Q. Is it better to let a flat furnished or unfurnished? If I let unfurnished, does the tenant have extra rights?
A. Since 1988 there has been no legal difference between the two but there are financial implications: you aren’t liable for council tax on an unfurnished property for the first six months of a void period and landlords of furnished rentals can claim 10 per cent depreciation allowance per year. But you can’t claim both on the same property.
What you should offer will depend on the type of property. Small flats aimed at one person just leaving home, for example, should come fully furnished. Larger family homes are probably best left largely unfurnished. If you own several properties, it is useful to be able to move furniture around as needed so offering your tenants a choice in how much furniture they get can be useful. This saves you supplying furniture that’s not needed.
Finally, adverts saying part-furnished aren’t very helpful – it is better to itemise what you supply, especially for white goods. There’s nothing quite as awkward to move as a washing machine.
James Davis is CEO of online lettings agent www.upad.co.uk. You can also follow Upad on Twitter: @avoidthevoids.