Mortgaged Property: You must discuss the letting of the property with your building society or bank before entering into a tenancy agreement. it is the best to advise them that you are dealing with a specialist in the field of rented accommodation. The leader will usually contact us setting out any requirement they need when the property is let. It also assures then that the letting is being handled professionally. If a lender has not been informed, they may class the tenancy as void.
Insurance: You will need to inform your insurance company of both the buildings and contents cover that the property is due to let, they may alter the policy to include public liability if this is not included initially. We can assist you in finding landlords insurance at a very competitive rate.
Personal Items: Strongly advise that personal items, especially if they are valuable or sentimental are removed from the property before it is let. Ant ‘luxury item’,such as a video or Hi-Fi equipment etc. should be removed. if the property is to be let unfurnished we do recommend that carpets and curtains are provided.
Furnishings: All sort furnishings to be left in the property should comply with the current fire and furnishings regulations, if they do not they cannot stay in the property one let. For further details on the regulations, please see safety regulation later on down the page.
Gas Appliances: All gas appliances within the property must have a current gas safety certificate by a gas safety registered engineer. A copy of this certificate must be given to the agency before a letting commences. The agency can arrange this safety check on your behalf if required.
Electrical Appliances: It is advisable to have all electrical appliances checked by a qualified electrician and a certificate issued, a copy of which should be given to the agents. We also strongly advise that the wiring is checked every four to five years. We can arrange for our electrician to check the appliances should you not have your own qualified electrician.
Maintenance: Repairs remain the responsibility if the landlord however repaired required following a tenant(s) misuse or a wilful damage are the tenant(s) responsibility.
Presentation: We can recommend that before a property is presented for a letting it is in good, clean, decorative order with garden cut and tidy, not only in order to attract a tenant(s) as quickly as possible but to try to ensure the property is returned to you in the same good condition when the tenant(s) vacate.
Tenancy Agreements: An assured shorthold tenancy is for fixed period, normally for six months. When you want the tenancy to be brought to an end at least two months’ notice mist be given on the prescribed forms, if you opt for management services this will be done for you at an additional cost. Our tenancy agreement comply with the current housing laws very comprehensive and are written in plain English and are therefore easy to understand by both the tenant and landlord.
Income Tax: Income tax is payable on any money earned from letting of the property, however any expenses, e.g. commission on rents, administration charges, property repair and certain insurances can be off-set against tax. if a landlord is living abroad, we are bound by law to deduct tax at the current rate, which we hold against any subsequent tax liabilities unless we are in receipt of an exemption certificate issued by the Inland Revenue, If you require further advice on the matter, please do not hesitate to contact us.
What To Do Now: If you decide to go ahead with the letting of the property, we ask you to sign our contract and return it to us. Please remember that if you want us to show prospective tenants around the property, we shall require a set of keys. If there are any queries you have regarding letting, please do not hesitate to contact us.
Safety Regulations -
The Furniture and Furnishing (fire) Safety Regulations 1998 (amended 1993 and 1996)
The regulations state that all soft furnishings provided within a let property must be fire resistant and have a permanently attached label stating that the item has pass the necessary match and cigarette tests. All furniture purchased after 1st March 1990 should automatically comply, anyone found breaching these regulations face heavy fines and/ or imprisonment.
Furnishing affected include any items with foam or soft filling interiors such as some bed bases, mattresses, sofas, chairs, cushions, headboards, futons, garden furniture etc.
The Electrical Equipment (safety) Regulations 1994 (amended) 1996
The electrical equipment supplied in a property must be safe, if in any doubt it should be checked by N.I.C.E.I.C registered electrical engineer. The fixed wiring in a property should be checked every 4-5 years.
The energy performance certificates
As from 1st October 2008 the Government requires each rented property to have an Energy Performance certificate (EPC). This is a certificate that shows tenants how energy efficient the property is. The EPC will grade each property from A to G (A being the most efficient and G being the least), current running costs of heating, lighting and hot water will also be shown on the certificate, and they will be also recommend some energy saving improvements. These will be carried out by an official Domes Energy Advisor, who willl visit you property to assess the age, construction and look of the property as well as its fixture and fittings, such as heating systems, insulation, double glazing etc. It is recommended that you look at obtaining this certificate as soon as possible, as you could incur a fine for non-compliance, should you let without a certificate, however each EPC will remain valid for ten years.
Measures you can look at improving now
Make sure your property is adequately insulated in the loft and if possible cavity wall insulation.
If you boiler is over 15 years old it may be time to replace it. It is recommended that you look at a Combi boiler which saves space, and you do not require a hot water tank. If you have a water tank ensure it is insulated.
Double glazing may also be a consideration, although, it is expensive but it improves the property and will reduce the heating costs and noise levels. The property will be easier to sell when the time comes.
When you buy a new cooker or fridge for the property make sure it has the energy efficiency notice on it.
We understand that there may be grants available under certain circumstances which you may wish to enquire about.
The Gas Safety (installation and use) Regulations 1994 (amended) 1996 and 1998
Since 1st November 1994 all let properties must have a current gas safety certificate. This must be issued by a Gas Safe Registered Plumber or Engineer. The regulations state that all installlations and maintentance of gas fittings, appliances, meters, pipe work, ventilation and flues are check for their safe use. The certificate mist be renewed annually and a copy supplied to both, letting agent and tenant(s). It is illegal for a plumer who is not gas safe regitered to install gas appliances or carry out a gas safety certificate.
Fire Safety Recommendations
We recommend all landlords to install smoke detectors, fire extinguishers and fire blankets into their properties for the safety of the tenant(s).
We strongly advise landlords to ensure their property is secure to a standard requested by most insurance companies, A night latch (Yale Lock) and mortise deadlock should be fitted to entrance doors and window locks should be fitted to all opening ground floor windows, this is the general standard required for a tenant to obtain contents insurance.
Tenancy Deposit Protection
A deposit is any sum of money paid by the tenant to the landlord as security in connection with a tenancy. By law a deposit taken in relation to an Assured Shorthold tenancy in England and Wales must be protected.
The deposit must be protected in government- approved scheme within 30 calender day.
Inventories and rent payment record can be crucial in the event of a dispute.
Any landlords who do not protect the tenant(s) deposit, risk severe penalties. The Accommodation Agency is a member if the Tenancy Deposit Scheme and our membership number is G08058.
Approved Membership Schemes
The Accommodation Agency prides itself in being members of The National Approved Letting Scheme and The Property Ombudsman Scheme for Resendial Lettings, The National Approved Letting Scheme Membership number is A3029 and The Property Ombudsman Scheme Membership number L00549.