If your property is mortgaged, written consent should be obtained from the mortgagee – they may require additional clauses in the tenancy agreement of which you must inform us of.
If you are a leaseholder, check the terms of your lease, and obtain the necessary written consent before letting.
If you are a tenant yourself, you will require your landlord’s consent.
You should ensure that you are suitably covered for letting under both your buildings and contents insurance. Failure to inform your insurers may invalidate your policies – please contact LetsXL directly for all of your requirements.
We recommend that you arrange for regular outgoings e.g. mortgage, service charges, maintenance contracts etc. to be paid by standing order or direct debit. However, if we are providing a full management service we may make payment of certain bills on your behalf, provided such bills are received in your name at our office, and that sufficient funds are held to your credit (subject to specific authorisation).
Council tax is the responsibility of the occupier. You should inform your local collection office that you are leaving the property. During vacant periods the charge reverts to the owner.
It is most important that a full inventory of the contents and condition is prepared. This will avoid misunderstanding or dispute at the end of a tenancy. Without such safeguards, it is impossible for the landlord to prove any loss, damage, or significant deterioration of the property or contents. Pure can provide this service at additional cost. (included with the fully managed service)
When the landlord is a UK resident, it is entirely their responsibility to inform the Inland Revenue of rental income received, and to pay any tax due. However, where the landlord is resident outside the UK during a tenancy, under rules effective from 6 April 1996, unless an exemption certificate is held, we as the landlord’s agents are obliged to retain and forward to the Inland Revenue on a quarterly basis, an amount equal to the basic rate of income tax from rental received, less certain expenses. An application form for exemption is available on request, and further information may be obtained from the Inland Revenue.
The following safety requirements are the responsibility of the owner (the landlord) and the agency – where we are providing our fully managed service. Therefore to protect all interests we ensure full compliance with the appropriate regulations, at the owner’s expense.
Under the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 all gas appliances and flues in rented accommodation must be checked for safety within 12 months of being installed, and thereafter at least every 12 months by a competent engineer (e.g. a Gas Safe registered gas installer).
There is a duty to ensure that all gas appliances, flues and associated pipework are maintained in a safe condition at all times. Full records must be kept for at least 2 years of the inspections of each appliance and flue, of any defects found and of any remedial action taken.
A copy of the safety certificate issued by the engineer must be given to each new tenant before their tenancy commences, or to each existing tenant within 28 days of the check being carried out.
In our experience the key to a smooth running tenancy is having a good relationship with the tenant. Tenants should feel comfortable in their home, and that they are receiving value for their money. Our policy of offering a service of quality and care extends to our tenant applicants too, and we recommend rental properties which conform to certain minimum standards; after all, quality properties attract quality tenants.
Electrical, gas, plumbing, waste, central heating and hot water systems must be safe and in good working order. Repairs and maintenance are at the landlord’s expense unless misuse can be established.
Appliances such as washing machines, fridge freezers, cookers, dishwashers etc. should be in usable condition. Repairs and maintenance are at the landlord’s expense unless misuse can be established.
There are a number of regulations when it comes to electrical installations, equipment and appliance safety. These affect landlords and their agents in that they are ‘supplied in the course of business’. The Electrical Equipment (Safety) Regulations 1994, the Plugs and Sockets Regulations 1994, the 2005 Building Regulation – ‘Part P, and British Standard BS1363 relating to plugs and sockets all apply. While there is no legal requirement for an Electrical Safety Certificate right now, new legislation coming into effect in Spring 2017 will require you to have your property inspected by a qualified professional in order to gain your certificate, in much the same vein as with your gas supply.
The Furniture and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations 1988 (amended 1989, 1993 & 1996) provide that specified items supplied in the course of letting property must meet minimum fire resistant standards. The regulations apply to all upholstered furniture, and beds, headboards and mattresses, sofa-beds, futons and other convertibles, nursery furniture, garden furniture suitable for use in a dwelling, scatter cushions, pillows, and non-original covers for furniture. They do not apply to antique furniture or furniture made before 1950, bed clothes including duvets, loose covers for mattresses, pillowcases, curtains, carpets or sleeping bags. Therefore all relevant items as above must be checked for compliance, and non-compliant items removed from the premises. In practice, most (but not all) items which comply must have a suitable permanent label attached. Items purchased since 1/3/1990 from a reputable supplier are also likely to comply.
The General Product Safety Regulations 1994 specify that any product supplied in the course of a commercial activity must be safe. In the case of letting, this would include both the structure of the building and its contents. Recommended action is to check for obvious danger signs – leaning walls, broken glass, sharp edges etc., and also to leave operating manuals or other written instructions about high risk items, such as hot surfaces, electric lawnmowers, etc. for the tenant.
At the commencement of a tenancy the property must be in a thoroughly clean condition. At the end of each tenancy the tenant is responsible for leaving the property in a similar condition. Where they fail to do so, cleaning should be arranged at their expense.
We recommend that you make use of the Post Office redirection service – forms are available at Post Office counters and the cost is minimal. It is not the tenant’s responsibility to forward mail.
It is helpful for you to leave information regarding operating the central heating and hot water system, washing machine, alarm system, and the day refuse is collected etc.
Interior decorations should be in good condition, and preferably plain, light and neutral. It is recommended that you leave only minimum furnishings, and these should be of reasonable quality. It is preferable that items to be left are in the property during viewings. If you are letting unfurnished, we recommend that the property contains carpets, curtains, and a cooker.
Personal possessions, ornaments, pictures, books etc. should be removed from the premises, especially those of real or sentimental value. Some items may be boxed, sealed and stored in the loft at the owner’s risk. All cupboards and shelf space should be left clear for the tenant’s own use.
Gardens should be left neat, tidy and rubbish-free, with any lawns cut. Tenants are required to maintain the gardens to a reasonable standard, provided they are left the necessary tools. If your garden is precious to you, or is particularly large, you may wish for us to arrange maintenance visits by one of our gardening team.
You should provide one set of keys for each tenant and a set for us to keep in the Pure office.