Should landlords furnish their rented property?

CPS Property on Crwys RoadIf you’re a buy-to-let landlord, one of the questions you probably considered before putting a property up for rent is whether it’s better to offer the property furnished or unfurnished. Both options have their pros and cons, and usually the decision is made by considering what type of tenant you want to attract. As one of Cardiff’s largest letting property agencies, we will be discussing the benefits and downsides of offering a furnished rental property.

The pros of furnishing a property

One of the benefits of furnishing a property is that it is likely to attract a specific clientele. Usually, furnished properties are most popular with students and young people, along with people who are travelling great distances to relocate. For these groups, furnishing a property themselves can either be a hassle if they have to bring furniture from far away, or just too expensive. This is especially good for the Welsh capital because of Cardiff’s large student population and thriving media industry. Each year sees more and more young-people moving to Cardiff, leading to increasing demand for rental properties.

Of course, by buying furniture for a property, you then have a legitimate reason to increase the monthly rent for the property, as people are likely to pay a higher fixed rent than pay a large sum in a short period of time to buy furniture themselves. This means you can quite quickly recoup the cost of furnishing a flat or house.

Despite potential changes to the standard wear and tear scheme, you can still get government-funded help towards replacing furniture that becomes damaged during tenancies, which means you aren’t constantly paying full price to replace any furnishings in the property.

Renting has become an extremely popular alternative to house ownership, as such, it’s important that your flat or house is marketed in the best possible way. One of the easiest ways to instantly grab the attention of someone browsing for somewhere to live is with eye-catching photographs. This is much easier with a furnished property; it is easier to stage attractive photos that convey a sense of home with a furnished property. This is doubly true if you have been very careful when buying furniture so that there is a coherent style (matching colours etc.), rather than a jumble of furniture.

Moving furniture in and out of a property can also damage the flooring and walls, meaning you could have to pay significantly more in maintenance costs for damages if you decide to let a property unfurnished, this can be especially problematic in areas where properties typically have a yearly rotation of tenants (such as areas with a high density of students, like Cardiff). On top of that, you will have to deal with removing furniture if a tenant decides to leave it in the property when they move out.

The cons of furnishing your rented property

Of course, offering a furnished property isn’t perfect, and in some situations it could benefit you more to offer the property as unfurnished.

More furniture means more items need to be checked at the end of a tenancy. So even though you could be avoiding large scale damage by furnishing your property, there will be more items for you to look after, and subsequently more paperwork to complete.

If you’re looking for more long-term or experienced renters, it may be better to offer an unfurnished property, as this is more likely to attract tenants who have the capital to buy their own furniture, suggesting older or more ‘mature’ clients. With their own furniture in the property, they may also be more inclined to stay longer and build better relationships with their landlord and/or agency.

If neither of these sound ideal, you can always offer the property part-furnished, offering only the essentials such as a bed and a wardrobe, and allowing the tenant to furnish the property with whatever else they want as they see fit.

Being a landlord can be stressful, and hard work, with lots of things to keep on top of. As one of Cardiff’s largest lettings and estate agents, we take pride in our experience at managing properties for landlords, and with almost a full year occupancy period for each property on average, our tenants love the properties we offer.

For more information about our Property Management Service, or if you have any questions about being a landlord or buying a property in Cardiff, please contact us, visit us at our Cardiff Bay branch, or email:

01 July 2016


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