The lettings game is hardly rocket science, but landlords do need to pay attention to detail if they're going to ensure their investments return the desired profits.

That's according to Malcolm Harrison, a spokesman for the Tenancy Deposit Scheme, who explains that overlooking the smaller aspects of the process can be particularly costly for anyone thinking of becoming a landlord.

"You have got to make sure that you do things the right way around," he said. "Otherwise, you could make mistakes and have an unhappy tenant, which can lead to all kinds of problems."

And this is a view that's echoed by Sarah Rushbrook, founding director of Rushbrook & Rathbone, who says that people are trying to cash in on the buy-to-let boom without first doing adequate research.

"More people are considering investing in buy-to-let, but it's surprising how many people only take mortgage repayments versus rental income into account," she said.

"All too often, they fail to remember that where rented property is concerned … there is a need for continued, long-term investment in the form of maintenance."

So in order to ensure you don't fall into the category of unaware and underprepared investors, it's important to remember that it's not simply a case of buying and letting - there's a lot of smaller yet just as vital details to take care of.

From taking out landlord insurance policies to securing tenancy deposits in a holding scheme and carrying out the necessary maintenance work, investors in the private rental sector need to ensure that they aren't blinded by the lucrative profits.

As such, taking time out to do the appropriate research, read up on your legal obligations and even have a glance at market trends before setting your rent prices could be the difference between enjoying impressive returns and struggling with costly losses.