Steps to analysing a buy-to-let property

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Be clear about your buy to let investment objectives, eg capital growth or income? 
Calculate how much you have to invest to cover a deposit and costs to let.
Research areas to find out which have the best capital growth/income potential.
  Compare areas via key trends such as employment, average wage, age trends as well as new investment in the area such as better transport links.
  Check the property is in an area where the tenant population is increasing, not declining.
  Use local agents who are members of the Property Ombudsman and ideally NALS and ARLA.
  Ask local agents to help you work out which roads and property type will give you the best return on capital growth or income.
Consider the pros and cons of buying a flat versus a house eg service charges.
Compare council tax from one area to another (reduces costs during voids).
If considering new build deals with rent guarantees, check what happens if the rent guarantee goes bust.
What costs will you incur to renovate the property so it is let legally?
Include likely maintenance costs over a 20 year period (eg will the property need a new roof? Boiler?)
See which properties you can secure the best deal on, for example is a seller desperate so you can offer 10% below the true value?
Check insurance costs.
Know and understand the tax implications of renting or selling the property in the future.


All our information is brought to you by Kate Faulkner OBE, author of Which? Property books and one of the UK's top property experts.
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