Landlords - are you embarrassed about being one?

Landlords - are you embarrassed about being one?

Becoming a landlord is often touted as a way to secure valuable income and build a nest egg for the future, and as a result, many people harbour dreams of building a property empire. Yet in a bizarre twist of fate, it seems that once that dream has been realised, many property moguls are actually embarrassed to admit their vocation.

A recent poll of residential property investors by the National Landlord Association (NLA) shows that one in five landlords - 21% of those surveyed - are too embarrassed to admit what they do for a living, with many actively choosing to avoid telling people. Often this is due to fear of a bad reaction from the other person, particularly those who have had a bad experience when dealing with landlords in the past, but bad press is also to blame.

"The number of people looking to invest in property is rising all the time, yet the stigma attached to being a landlord never seems to diminish," said Richard Lambert of the NLA. "It's the minority of rogues and criminal landlords that make the headlines, and this has a negative impact on everyone else.

"The majority of landlords are hardworking individuals who put their own money into providing homes for others, and they should not be ashamed to say so".

Don't be ashamed!

As Richard said, there should be nothing to fear by admitting your vocation - the majority of landlords provide a much-needed home to tenants and provide exemplary service. As long as you go about things the right way (keep deposits in a separate account, for example, and make sure you've got suitable landlords insurance) and put your tenants' needs first, there's nothing to stop you from shouting it from the rooftops.

Realise the benefits

Indeed, there could be a lot to gain from landlordship. Recent figures from Your Move show that average rents hit an all-time high of £846 in July, up 5.2% year-on-year, "suggesting the recent slowdown in rent rises may have come to an end", said Adrian Gill of Your Move. Average gross yields currently stand at 4.5%, a slight drop from 5.1% a year ago, but still worth considering - and depending on where your property is based in the country, it could be even more than that. It all comes down to finding the ideal combination of low property prices and high rents, and if you can manage that, you could be onto a winner! Finding the right buy-to-let mortgage will also be vital - the lower your repayments are the more profit you'll make from rent, so make sure to compare buy-to-let mortgages and see if you can find one that meets your property portfolio aspirations.