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Top 10 tips to get on – and stay on – the holiday letting market

Tuesday 1st February, 2022 by hostandstay

If you’re thinking of buying a holiday let property, you may be wondering where to start. While the basics may seem obvious – buy property, rent it out – there are lots of things to consider along the way.

Here are our top 10 tips for anyone looking to get into the holiday home rental market.

1. Do your research

Unless you have an existing property you’re planning on letting out, the chances are you’ll be looking to buy – in which case, don’t rush in. Things to consider when buying your holiday let property are location, amenities and the house itself; think carefully about what prospective holidaymakers will want.

2. Think of the future

While a chocolate-box cottage looks appealing, these can be limiting in the type of clients you’ll attract, as well as being highly competitive. It’s better to go for something more neutral, with plenty of easy-to-use space, to attract a wider audience. Also make sure to check out the local area; are the bus services about to be reduced? Are new roads on the cards? You’re looking for an area with a future, not a village on its last legs.

3. How will you pay for it?

Unless you can afford to pay for it outright, you’ll need a way to fund your dreams, the most of common of which involve mortgages. Your first option is to take out a dedicated holiday-let mortgage, although these can be difficult to find.

Your second option, therefore, is to remortgage your existing home and use the funds to buy your holiday let, either outright or to pay a hefty deposit and take a loan for the rest.

4. Making money

How much to charge for your holiday home will vary wildly, depending on a number of variables. The best thing to do is look at the competition and compare your property. Sea views, parking or a hot tub can all make your home worth that little bit extra, although you have to calculate that against the cost of paying for them in the first place.

 

5. Tick all the boxes

Mortgage aside, there are many other financial and legal concerns to be considered when buying a holiday let. Make sure you factor in elements such as council tax, bills, insurance and legal implications right from the start; you don’t want to be facing unexpected bills or obligations once you’ve taken the plunge.

6. Know the rules

There are strict rules surrounding holiday home ownership, especially when it comes to tax. If your property is in England, and available to rent for 20 weeks (140 days) or more, you must be registered for business rates property tax. And in terms of your personal tax payments, you’ll need to complete a Self Assessment tax return, as you would if you were a residential landlord. More information on the legal and tax implications of owning a holiday home can be found here.

7. Make your property as appealing as possible

Once you’ve made your purchase and the home is yours, you need to make it as appealing to as wide an audience as possible. One simple way to do this is by making it pet-friendly; ringing their dog with them can be make or break for many visitors. Another is by welcoming the whole family; a cot, highchair and baby bath are simple additions that make all the difference for parents travelling with small children.

8. Holidays for all

Obviously, one of the big advantages of owning your own holiday home is having your own personal bolthole, for you and your loved ones. However, to maximise your returns, try to keep it free for paying guests in peak season, such as school holidays.

9. Provide a welcome pack

One thing that will often come up as part of a good review is a welcome pack. If your visitors have travelled a long way, a pack of tea, coffee, milk and other basic groceries means they don’t have to bother finding the nearest shop on their first day, Equally, a guide to the local area (including the nearest shop!), makes life much easier for those unfamiliar with the region.

10. Property management

With just the one property, it can be tempting to think you can do it all – advertising, cleaning, liaising – yourself. However, it’s a fairly time-consuming commitment, even if you live local – do you really want to spend your weekends cleaning a home you’re not going to stay in?


At Host & Stay, we take the trouble out of holiday home ownership. Our teams take care of everything, from taking photos and marketing to cleaning and dealing with payments. All you need to do is sit back and enjoy.

For more information, visit https://hostandstay.co.uk/host/

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