As thousands of people struggle to sell their properties in the current financial climate, many are turning to renting them out in order to move on with their lives. However this comes with its own problems and responsibilities that many people are not really prepared for.
Being a landlord means you have legal responsibilities towards the housing of others. In order to stay on the right side of the law, provide a place where people want to live and avoid tenants from hell, it is recommended that landlords should seek to use recognised and trusted professional services to help them operate their rental property business and educate themselves before it’s too late.
The most common concerns faced by new landlords regarding offering a new tenancy are:
- Background of tenants
- The rent / rent arrears
- Property maintenance
- Legal compliance
Every landlord wants to avoid the tenant from hell, someone who doesn’t respect where they live, the neighbours or the landlord and who doesn’t pay the rent. Tenant referencing can help landlords avoid bad tenants and professional referencing should include:
- Credit Check
- Employers / Accountants Reference
- Landlords / Managing Agent’s Reference
- Financial Review
- Bankruptcy Search
- Anti Fraud Check
With the current financial unrest still being felt by many people, employment uncertainties and austerity measures still emerging, it can be a worry for landlords and their tenants about being able to pay the rent on time.
The rent can be guaranteed providing that the conditions of the rent guarantee insurance are met, usually meaning that the applying tenant must be credit checked and properly referenced prior to the start of the tenancy.
Landlords may need to provide repairs or conduct regular maintenance on their rental property in order to maintain their income producing asset. They may know a bloke from the pub that can do the job but it is recommended to use recognised tradesmen to do any work on the property. Repairs will be done to the correct standard and tradesmen should be professionally registered with their respective federations to ensure quality. Any repairs involving gas can only be conducted by a GasSafe registered engineer.
Landlords need to ensure they have adequate insurance for the protection of their rental property, many mortgage providers demand proof of insurance. There are a multitude of different insurance products on the market but it is recommended that landlords protect the landlord’s contents within a property as well as the fabric of the building. This means fixtures and fittings such as the kitchen and bathroom suite are insured. Find out more here
Self managing landlords need to ensure they are compliant with over 70 separate pieces of government legislation and a raft of local authority regulations. It is recommended that landlords seek professional property management agents to ensure that all the correct legal requirements are met.