01483 457489, St Edmunds House, 13 Quarry Street, Guildford, GU1 3UY

 

Landlord Information

Legal

As a landlord you are required to ensure your property complies with legal regulations. Landlords must check that the mortgage company is aware that the property is intended to be let & all clauses in the lease adhered to. For example you may need to inform the management company that the property is to be tenanted & inform us as your agent of specific applicable clauses. It is essential to have buildings insurance & we advise our landlords to purchase contents insurance for their fully furnished properties. You will need to inform your insurance company that you are letting the property to ensure the right cover. Failure to do so may invalidate your policy. We will be pleased to advise you on Landlords Legal Protection, Rent Guarantee Cover & Landlords Contents & Buildings Insurance if required.

Landlords have been required since 2008 to provide prospective tenants with an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) for their property. The EPC must be provided either when or before any written information is provided to prospective tenants or a viewing is conducted. EPC's are valid for 10 years & it is not necessary to provide a new certificate for each rental. For more information www.direct.gov.uk.

Your property will be subject to mandatory licensing by the local authority if it is on 3 or more levels and let to 5 or more tenants, comprising of 2 or more families. Special management rules are likely to apply to a property where it is tenanted by 3 or more unrelated people & classified as a House In Multiple Occupation (HMO). For more information www.communities.gov.uk/hhsrs.

Deposits will be taken at the commencement of the tenancy. It has been mandatory since April 2007 for all deposits taken by landlords and lettings agents under Assured Shorthold Tenancies (ASTs) to be legally protected through one of two government authorised schemes. Keep Properties strongly recommends the use of The Deposit Protection Service- the custodial scheme. There is no charge to the landlord or tenant and the full deposit is paid to the Deposit Protection Service www.depositprotection.com for safekeeping. Landlords do have the option to pay a membership fee & fee per deposit to an insurance based scheme www.mydeposits.co.uk , allowing them to hold on to the deposit. It is essential to remember that if the landlord does not adhere to either scheme, they are then unable to evict a tenant under the Section 21 rule, gaining repossession of their property. For more information www.direct.gov.uk/en/TenancyDeposit/index.htm.

Presentation & Maintenance

It is our experience that tenants are generally respectful and happier in their accommodation when they have a good relationship with their agent. We recognise that tenants appreciate clean, well presented & highly maintained properties and are likely to be more care taking in their homes whilst paying a representative rental price.

Your property will be let fully furnished, part furnished or unfurnished depending on the type of property, your preference & market conditions. It is important to remember that there will be wear & tear on all items provided. The furniture & Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations 1988 (amended 1989 & 1993) stipulate that specified items supplied during the property let must meet minimum fire resistant standards. The regulations apply to all upholstered furniture & there should be a visible label attached to confirm the filling complies with regulations.

Your tenants will find it helpful if you leave a list of essential information regarding operation & maintenance of household equipment such as alarm systems, refuse collection etc. Each tenant will require one set of keys each.

Gardens should be neat & tidy. Tenants will be required to maintain the gardens to a reasonable standard, however it may be necessary to arrange regular visits from a gardener if you have an especially large or high maintenance garden. We would be happy to recommend an experienced local company if you so wish.

Accommodation must be received by the tenant in a clean state & it is the responsibility of the tenant to return it in the same condition. If they fail to do so we will arrange cleaning professionals at the tenants expense. We are able to provide a full inventory and schedule of condition prior to the property being let of required. The inventory is essential to avoid any disputes at the end of the tenancy period & without such the landlord will be unable to prove any loss, damage, or significant deterioration of the property or contents. Arrangement of transfer of Council Tax & utility accounts to the tenant, initial & closing meter readings will be provided by us as your agent.

Safety

The property must be safe & secure for your tenants to live in. All properties built since June 1992 must have been fitted with mains powered smoke detector alarms from new. It is considered that within common law 'duty of care', landlords & their agents could be liable should a fire cause injury or damage in a tenanted property where smoke alarms are not fitted. We therefore strongly recommend that a hardwired or battery type alarm be fitted on each floor of the property in hall & landing areas. We would be happy to arrange for fire safety checks to be carried out by authorised fire service personnel.

All gas appliances and flues must be inspected by a GAS SAFE registered engineer every 12 months with a Gas Safety Certificate issued under the Gas Safety (Installation & Use) Regulations 1998 CHECK DATE. A copy of the certificate will be held with the tenant in the property & the landlord and kept for at least 2 years. We also strongly recommend that an annual service & inspection are carried out on the boiler & that a carbon monoxide alarm also be present.

Currently there is no legal requirement with a tenanted property for an electrical safety certificate (except in the case of all HMO's). There are several regulations relating to electrical installations, equipment & appliance safety which affect landlords & their agents. Therefore, it is strongly recommended by Keep Properties that an inspection & certificate is issued to prevent accusations of neglect of 'duty of care' and to ensure safety of your tenants.

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