How long will it be before my property is rented?Compass main aim is to attract the right tenant and will ensure the property is marketed before itbecomes vacant therefore avoiding any long periods where the landlord is without rent.Income TaxWhen the landlord is resident in the UK, it is entirely his or hers responsibility to inform the InlandRevenue of rental income received, and to pay any tax due. However, where the landlord is residentoutside the UK during a tenancy, under new rules effective from 6th April 1996, unless an exemptioncertificate is held, we as landlord’s agents are obliged to retain and forward to the Inland Revenueon a quarterly basis, an amount equal to the basic rate of income tax from rental received, less certainexpenses. Further information can be obtained from the Inland Revenue website.Consent from Lender to FreeholderIf the property to be let is subject to a mortgage or other loan, it is usually necessary for the landlordto obtain permission from the lender. The landlord must continue to make arrangements for loanrepayments as we cannot accept responsibility. If the property is leasehold, you may need to obtainpermission from the Freeholder or managing agent before the property is let.Important Safety RegulationsThe following safety requirements are the responsibility of the owner (the Landlord), and where weare to manage the property, they are also ours as agents. Therefore to protect all interests we ensurefull compliance with the appropriate regulations, at the owner’s expense.Gas Appliances & EquipmentAnnual safety check:Under the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 and the Gas SafeRegister which came into force 1st April 2009 all gas appliances and flues in rented accommodationmust be checked for safety within 12 months of being installed, and thereafter at least every 12months by a competent engineer (e.g. Gas Safe Registered).Copies to tenants: A copy of the safety certificate issued by the engineer must be given to each newtenant before their tenancy commences, or to each existing tenant within 28 days of the check beingcarried out.Electrical Safety ChecksThe Government has now brought in detailed regulations for five-year electrical safety checks in theprivate rented sector from the 1st July 2020. These state that all new private tenancies will need toensure that electrical installations are inspected & tested by a qualified person before the tenancybegins. The landlord will then need to ensure that the installation is inspected and tested at leastevery five years (more often if the most recent safety report requires it). For existing tenancies, anelectrical safety test will need to be carried out by 1st April 2021, with regular tests following this asoutlined above. Once the electrical installation has been tested, the landlord must; (1) Ensure theyreceive a written report from the person conducting the inspection, which includes the results andthe required date for the next inspection. (2) Supply a copy of this report to each existing tenantliving in the property within 28 days of the inspection. (3) Supply a copy within seven days to thelocal authority, if requested. (4) Keep a copy of the report until the next inspection, and give a copyto the person undertaking the next inspection. For new tenancies, the landlord must (1) Give a copyof the most recent report to a new tenant before the tenant occupies the property. (2) Give a copyof the most recent report to any prospective new tenant who requests the report in writing, within28 days of receiving such a request.Furniture & FurnishingsThe Furniture and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations 1988 (amended 1989, 1993 & 1996) providethat specific items supplied in the course of letting property must meet minimum fire resistantstandards. The regulations apply to all upholstered furniture, beds, headboards and mattresses,sofa beds, futons and other convertibles, nursery furniture, garden furniture suitable for use in adwelling, scatter cushions, pillows, and non-original covers for furniture. They do not apply to antiquefurniture or furniture made before 1950, bed clothes including duvets, loose covers for mattresses,pillow cases, curtains, carpets or sleeping bags. Therefore all relevant items as above must be checkedfor compliance, and non-compliant items removed from the premises.EPC CertificatesLandlord must provide an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) for new tenants. If you are renting outyour property (buy to let), you will need to provide a certificate to any perspective tenant. The EPConce obtained, is valid for 10 years, thus if a Valid Energy Performance Certificate still exists whenchanging tenants a new certificate is not required. All rented properties must be a minimum rating ofEPC band E or above. Compass can arrange for an EPC to be carried out on your behalf, please ask forfurther details.Legionnaires DiseaseLandlords have responsibilities for combating Legionnaires’ disease. Health and safety legislationrequire that landlords carry out risk assessments for the Legionella bacteria which cause Legionnairesdisease and thereafter maintain control measures to minimise the risk. Most rental premises will below risk but it is important that risk assessments are carried out and control measures introduced.Compass will arrange for a risk assessment to be carried out when needed on managed properties.Tenancy Deposit SchemeThe government implemented the Tenancy Deposit Scheme, part of the new legislation governingresidential lettings from the Housing Act 2004. It is mandatory for the deposit or bond for a propertyto be paid to a third party who will resolve any disputes if there are any regarding the return of thismoney at the end of the tenancy.This is seen as a fair way of ensuring that a tenant or whoever pays a deposit is entitled to get all orpart of it back and the end of the tenancy. Where tenancies are created on or after the 6th April 2007there will be a legal obligation on the landlord to pay the deposit or ‘bond’ obtained for the propertyto a Government accredited Scheme Administrator who will hold it securely throughout the durationof the tenancy.The Landlord must advise the tenant in advance which accredited scheme the deposit is to be lodgedwith.InsuranceYou should ensure that you are suitable covered for letting under both your buildings and contentsinsurance. Failure to inform your insurers may invalidate your policies.Money LaunderingUnder the Money Laundering Regulations 2003, both landlords and tenants are required to provideidentity and proof of residency.Preparing The Property For LettingWe have found from experience that a good relationship with tenants is the key to a smooth runningagency. As Property Managers the relationship part is our job, but it is important that the tenantsshould feel comfortable in their temporary home, and that they are receiving value for their money.Our policy of offering a service of quality and care therefore extends to our tenant applicants too.At Compass we firmly believe quality properties attract quality tenants.General ConditionElectrical, gas, plumbing, waste, central heating and hot water systems must be safe, sound and ingood working order. Repairs and maintenance are at the landlord’s expense unless misuse can beestablished.AppliancesSimilarly, appliances such as washing machines, fridge/freezers, cookers, dishwashers etc., should bein usable condition. Repairs and maintenance are at the landlord’s expense unless misuse can beestablished.DecorationsInterior decorations should be in good condition, and preferable, plain, light and neutral.FurnishingThere is no monetary difference between letting a furnished or unfurnished property. However werecommend that you leave only a minimum furnishings and these should be of reasonable quality. Ifyou are leaving your property unfurnished then we recommend that the property contains carpets,curtains and a cooker.Personal Item, Ornament etc.Personal possessions, ornaments, pictures, books etc. Should be removed from the premises especiallythose of real sentimental value. All cupboard and shelf space should be left empty for the tenant’sown use.GardensGardens should be left neat, tidy and rubbish free, with any lawns cut. Tenants are required tomaintain the gardens to a reasonable standard.CleaningAt the commencement of the tenancy the property must be in a thoroughly clean condition and at theend of each tenancy it is the tenant’s responsibility to leave the property in similar condition. Wherethey fail to do so, cleaning should be arranged at their expense.Mail ForwardingWe recommend that you make use of the Post Office redirection service. Applications forms areavailable at their counters or visit www.postoffice.co.uk/redirection, and the cost is minimal.It is not the tenant’s responsibility to forward mail.Information For The TenantIf is helpful if you leave information for the tenant on operating the central heating and hot watersystem, washing machine and alarm system, and the day refuse is collected etc.KeysYou should provide one set of keys for each tenant. Where we are managing we will arrange to haveduplicates cut as required.
“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” - Winston Churchill