After finding gardens can add 25% more to average letting prices for UK homes, Paving Direct has provided tips to help landlords avoid garden maintenance disputes.
According to the data, the most expensive gardens in the UK are in Bath, where they add over 43% to the average rental price in this city.
Tenancy Deposit Scheme has said that gardening accounts for more than a quarter of all deposit disputes claimed by landlords using their TDS Custodial tenancy deposit scheme. With this in mind, Paving Direct has provided five tips for landlords looking to avoid such issues:
1. Put clear garden maintenance clauses in place
The tenant should know what they are responsible for in the garden and this should be written in the tenancy agreement which both parties have signed. This should take into account the greenery in the garden and what type of upkeep might be needed over the longer term.
2. Keep a record of the garden inventory
As well as a diligent record of the interior condition of the property, landlords should keep reports and good quality time-stamped photos of the garden so they have documentation in case of any problems which may arise with the tenant.
3. Conduct regular inspections
When conducting the property inspection for the tenancy, landlords should check over the garden too and document any changes. If there are any apparent issues, the tenant should be asked to rectify these at the time of inspection.
4. Maintain a good relationship with the tenants
Keeping a good relationship with tenants can help to avoid a garden dispute, where the tenants are able to add in plants and designs to the garden where they see fit. Tenants should also be encouraged to report issues when they occur, rather than at the end of the tenancy where it may become difficult to decide who owns responsibility over the issue.
5. Create a strong foundation
Ensure that the garden is in good condition before the tenants move in, clearing any excess weeds, mowing the lawn, and removing any uneven paving stones and old furniture. This will set the ground running for new tenants and ensure they have a baseline of what is expected from them.
Cass Heaphy, Digital Director at Paving Direct, comments: “Our research shows just how much value a garden can add to a house and why homeowners need to be making the most of their outside space. Likewise, property investors need to be aware of the opportunity cost of upgrading the garden in their properties, as it can add real value, and higher income.
“I think one of the key things to come out of the whole lockdown experience for many people is really valuing their garden. It has underscored our appreciation of all the benefits it provides to happiness, health, and well-being. That appreciation is only going to increase demand and therefore, more value, to homes with gardens or outdoor spaces.”
For the full research, visit: https://www.pavingdirect.com/gardens-and-uk-rental-prices-2021.