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How to get maximum value out of your investment property

Choosing to buy a rental property in an area where tenant demand is high and vacancies are low is one way for landlords to increase their investment property’s likely income, but once the purchase is made, there are other ways to maximise its value.

Carolyn Parrella, Executive Manager of Landlord Insurance Specialists, Terri Scheer, says property investment is a passionate interest of many people who work at the company, and that seeing claims made over the years can give an extra insight.

“What we’ve found is that the better maintained the property is, the less chance there will be of a tenant doing the wrong thing,” she says. “It means attending to repairs quickly and refreshing the property every couple of years between tenancies, so it stays in tip-top condition and your investment property can attract the best type of tenants.

“Also it’s worth keeping on top of how the rental prices are going in the area around your investment property, and you can do that through online sites like Domain. Just keeping your finger on what’s currently happening in the market may help.”

Parrella says having a good relationship with a property manager can be a key factor, because they may be able to investigate a tenant’s background using checking systems and databases they already have in place.

“If a landlord chooses to manage their property on their own, we strongly recommend they do as many background checks as they can, particularly by asking the tenant’s previous landlord or property manager if that information is available.

“It also makes sense to check with a prospective tenant’s employer to make sure they are actually making the amount of money they claim on their application form.”

Insurance is a way of guarding against loss on an investment property, and protection against the most common risks with Terri Scheer landlord insurance can cost as little as $1 a day*.

Parrella says “Apart from obvious risks like loss of rent and damage to your investment property, there are other risks landlords should consider which may not be covered under a standard building insurance policy.

“For example, a landlord might have previously lived in a home, moved out, and decided to put it up for rent. They probably have an owner-occupier policy, but may not realise their previous policy is unlikely to cover the building when it’s rented. We’ve had that happen a couple of times, and were able to give the right advice.

“Along with cover for damage and loss of rent, our “Landlord Preferred” policy will also cover some legal costs to landlords. Most times those will be incurred when landlords need to seek legal advice, and that’s usually part of our general landlord insurance policy.

“Even things like having to go to a tribunal hearing, or having to get a bailiff to come out to the property to serve notices are generally covered.”

The Terri Scheer’s standard “landlord preferred” policy includes legal liability cover of up to $20 million and up to $60,000 for damage by tenants to the building and contents. “There’s literally millions of dollars worth of protection,” Parrella says.

“There are also other types of covers in our general landlord insurance policy, like protection against a tax audit. If the Australian Tax Office decides to do an audit on your tax, this can help cover the cost of having your accountant review your tax files. Damage by pets may be covered too, and of course there’s cover for theft.

“More than 10,000 property managers and real estate agents across Australia can help arrange Terri Scheer Insurance cover, which makes us the most referred landlord insurer in the country.”

Visit www.terrischeer.com.au for more information.

Disclaimer
This article is presented by AAI Limited ABN 48 005 297 807 AFSL 230859 trading as Vero Insurance. In arranging Landlord insurance, Terri Scheer Insurance Pty Ltd ABN 76 070 874 798 AFSL 218585 acts under authority given to it by Vero Insurance. The information is intended to be of a general nature only. Any advice about the insurance products described in this website is general advice and has been prepared without taking into account anyone’s objectives, financial situation, or needs. Anyone intending to acquire a policy should consider the appropriateness of this advice together with the Product Disclosure Statement relating to the policy before making any decision about whether to purchase a policy. Contact us for a copy or go to terrischeer.com.au for a copy. We do not accept any legal responsibility for any loss incurred as a result of reliance upon it – please make your own enquiries.

* Across Australia, 82% of Terri Scheer customers paid $1 or less a day for their Landlord Insurance policy. Premium based on all Terri Scheer Landlord Insurance policies purchased or renewed in the 24 months to 01/01/15 – 31/01/17, inclusive of taxes.