Landlords guide to property letting

The lettings process

Valuation appraisal

All properties are viewed and a rental valuation is determined by location, condition and market-comparable properties. We shall advise you on any possible issues and will discuss options to increase the ‘rentability’ and annual rental value of the property.

Types of tenants required

We shall discuss with you any tenant criteria that you may specifically require ie. pets allowed, no smoking and employment status.

Furnished or unfurnished lettings

We are happy to discuss the options available and the benefits for each. As a rule of thumb, unfurnished properties are, in the main, easier to rent.


Types of letting service

We offer you as a landlord a range of options:
  1. Tenant Find only

    Our service comprises:

    • Marketing your property
    • Finding a suitable tenant and taking up credit checks and references
    • Carrying out accompanied viewings
    • Preparing the Tenancy Agreement
    • Collecting the tenant deposit and first month’s rent

  2. Tenant Find and rental collection

    As per Tenant Find, plus the added benefit of:

    • Monthly rental collection from tenant

  3. Full management

    As at 1 & 2 above plus the added benefit of:

    • Supplying a Check-in/Check-out service
    • Undertaking property inspections (normally conducted every three months)
    • Arranging maintenance/repairs as required


How do we market your property?

We shall be proactive in marketing your property in order to achieve maximum exposure through:
  • Our own website
  • Local newspapers
  • National websites
  • SMS to customers on our database

Types of tenancy agreements

The most common type of tenancy agreement is an Assured Shorthold Tenancy (AST).
There may be occasion to have a Company Let Agreement. This is used when letting a residential property to a company; the company pays the rent on behalf of the employee(s) who live at the property.
With both Agreements, we ensure that the Agreements are clear and concise.
These Agreements will include details such as deposit amount, rental payments, payment dates etc.


Deposits

We require tenants to pay a dilapidations deposit, which would normally be 1.5 times the monthly rental. This will be used if the property needs remedial work at the end of the tenancy.


Monthly income

This will be paid into your bank account, less any charges (commissions etc). All transactions will be set out in the Monthly Management Statement – a copy of which will be sent to you each month.


Tax

UK residents
In the UK a landlord is expected to pay tax on the rental income. Obviously this obligation will vary depending on your financial situation. The tax will be calculated by adding all rental income, adding all allowable expenses and then deducting the total allowable expenses from the total rental income. This then becomes the amount liable for tax.

Non-UK residents
If you are a Landlord and non-resident in the UK you will need to complete a form (NR1) to apply for rental income to be paid without UK tax deductions.


Regulatory requirements for landlords

Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)
From 2008 landlords have been required to provide an Energy Performance Certificate for any property they wish to let. This gives a rating on the energy performance of the property and is valid for 10 years. An EPC must be produced by an accredited Energy Assessor. We should be happy to arrange this on your behalf.

Gas Safety Certificate (CP12)
As a landlord, you are responsible for the safety of your tenants. The Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 deal with landlords’ duties to make sure gas appliances, fittings and flues provided for tenants are safe. You are also responsible for ensuring an annual gas safety check is carried out within 12 months of the installation of a new appliance or flue which you provide, and annually thereafter by a Gas Safe registered engineer. You must keep a record of the safety check for two years and issue a copy to each existing tenant within 28 days of the check being completed. You must also issue a copy to any new tenants before they move in. Again we shall be happy to arrange this on your behalf.

The Furniture and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations 1988 (amended 1989 & 1993)
Any furnishings at the rental property need to meet the above regulations (these include beds, headboards, mattresses, sofa-beds, futons, nursery furniture, garden furniture suitable for use in the property, cushions and seat pads, pillows, loose and stretch covers for furniture, all items of furniture added or replaced at the property).

Portable Appliance Tests (PAT)
Although this is not a legal requirement, we would recommend that landlords have any portable appliances tested for safety. Again, we can arrange this to be carried out for you.


Landlord Insurance

Buildings insurance

As landlord, you will be required to have Landlord’s buildings and contents insurance for your rental property. It is usually a requirement of any mortgaged property.

Rent guarantee insurance

We shall be happy to arrange this on your behalf – please contact us for more details.


Inventories

An inventory is one of the most valuable documents when renting out your property. It is for the protection of the landlord and tenant alike. It is a comprehensive document detailing the condition of the property prior to the start of the tenancy. The inventory is signed by both the landlord and tenant to indicate both parties agree that it is an accurate description of the condition of the property.


Permission to let

You will need to get permission from your mortgage provider (if applicable) before you can start to rent out your property. There may be charges and conditions attached to your mortgage.


Utilities

The tenant is responsible for payment of utility bills during the tenancy. However, if your property is leasehold you may be responsible for any ground rent or maintenance charges.