What makes the perfect HMO? The answer here is quite simple. It is all about the layout of the house and the sizes of the rooms. Of course, these are not simple things to change in a house so today we are going to be discussing exactly what you should be looking for when you are out viewing property with a mind to invest.
When you are looking at your potential HMO, the first thing you want to be thinking about is bedroom sizes.
How big the bedrooms are is going to be a very important factor when it comes to renting the property out to the right kind of tenant.
If The Bedrooms Are Too Small…
You want to be able to find tenants as fast as possible and you want them to stay in your property for a long time.
If the bedrooms are too small, then your tenants will not be comfortable and will not stay, Or, worse still, you will not be able to let the property at all.
If The Bedrooms Are Too Big…
You don’t want to be wasting space.
If one of the bedrooms is unnecessarily huge then you will probably want to consider making that room into two. While you want your tenants to be comfortable you also want your property to realise its full financial potential.
So there is a balance to strike. Not too large, not too small.
The Perfect Bedroom Size In An HMO
We have found that the perfect bedroom sizes for an HMO are around six and a half metres squared for a single and eight metres squared for a double.
If you have something in-between these sizes, say a seven square metre room, then you could make that room work by reducing the size of the bed from a double to a three-quarter. With a room of this size, you would probably want to price it higher than a single but not as high as a double.
For More Information See:
- What Is Best Practice For Room Sizes In An HMO Property?
- How Many Bedrooms Do I Want In My Next HMO Property?
- HMO Design: Larger Bedrooms Vs. En Suite Bathrooms
When you are trying to find that perfect HMO another thing you really want to think hard about is the kitchen.
Simply, you need to to make sure that the kitchen is big enough to provide for the needs of the tenants.
If you have a four bedroom HMO then most kitchen sizes (apart from the very small) will work. However, once you go up to five bedrooms, or six, or seven, then you will have to start thinking very carefully about what you need to provide in that space.
This is for two reasons.
Health and Safety
The first is health and safety. For houses that exceed a certain number of tenants, you will need to start providing two sinks, two cookers, two fridges.
A Comfortable Standard of Living
The second is about providing a comfortable standard of living for the tenants. Remember that happy tenants will stay in your property for longer and ultimately that will save you money.
If you have five tenants in your property, you don’t want to force them to share cupboards. This kind of thing can lead to arguments as to who has more space and what items belong to whom. You want each of your tenants to have their own cupboard space.
You want every one of your tenants to be able to live comfortably and having access to the facilities you provide is an essential element of that.
So when it comes to viewing your potential HMO don’t just make a quick assessment of the kitchen, you need to take measurements. You need to think about the number of people there are going to be living there and make sure that the facilities are sufficient.
The Communal Lounge
The third thing to consider is the lounge or communal area. Again, this is simply a case of making sure that it is big enough to suit the needs of the tenants.
Do I Need To Provide A Communal Lounge At All?
Now, there is some debate in HMO landlord circles as to whether or not an HMO investor needs to provide a communal lounge at all.
For the purposes of this piece, however, let’s assume that you are.
Measure The Space
For your tenants to be able to live comfortably they need to be able to sit comfortably in the communal lounge. If it is a five bedroom property with five tenants then you will need room in the lounge for at least five seats.
To make sure that there is going to room, you need to measure the room. You need to have a rough plan for the room before you agree to purchase the property.
The Ideal Size For A Communal Lounge
You will want the communal lounge to be at least ten plus metres squared.
If it is an HMO with five bedrooms this will give you enough room to provide sofa positions for all your tenants. It will give you surplus room so that you can fit in a coffee table and a television…
All those things that make life comfortable; that will help make your tenants happy to be living where they are.
Putting it all together; when you are out looking for your next HMO who want to be thinking of bedroom sizes first, kitchen size second, and the communal lounge first.
I strongly recommend that you take measurements of the rooms to make sure that they are fit for purpose. The bedrooms need to be big enough, the kitchen needs enough cupboard space and adequate facilities, the lounge needs to be big enough for all tenants in the house to be able to sit with each other comfortably.
If you make sure of these things then your tenants will be happier in their home environment and ultimately, happy tenants will help your bottom line.
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