Discover the most common questions that landlords and councils ask us about letting property. Get essential letting information and guidance if you are a private landlord and want to maximise your rental income. Learn about: tenancy agreements, property maintenance, safety certificates and more.
A: Most of the property currently in the rental market is part furnished i.e. offered with carpets, curtains and white goods in the kitchen. The rents achieved for part furnished property are also equal to those for fully furnished rents. Most tenants are generally happier to use their own bed and sofa.
A: Generally yes. Under statute the structure, services and heating are the Landlord's responsibility. The remainder depends on the Tenancy Agreement but normally Landlords maintain the property and contents i.e. white goods, unless it can be shown that the tenant has caused damage. Tenants must be allowed "fair wear and tear", but they must also look after the property as they would their own home.
A: The landlord insures the building and their contents. It is always advisable to have the widest cover possible i.e. accidental damage cover and cover for theft by tenant which is available through specialist policies. It is the tenant’s responsibility to insure their own possessions.
A: One of our professional staff will check your property regularly. Any damage should be noted at these visits and the tenant instructed to put the property into good order. We would also hold a deposit against damage and this can be used at the end of the tenancy for genuine works which are the tenant's responsibility as shown in the Tenancy Agreement.
A: No. Tenants are generally responsible for electricity, gas, telephone, water and council tax.
A: If the property is subject to a mortgage, consent is normally required from the lender. Also if you are not the freehold owner of the property, permission is usually required from the freeholder. You should deal with this before instructing us to let your property.
A: All Assured Shorthold Tenancy agreements are for a minimum period of 6 months, but can be longer and up to 3 years subject to negotiation.
A: Yes – Since October 2008 Landlords have been required to provide a valid EPC to their agent prior to marketing the property and a copy to the tenant for the start of the tenancy. These are provided by a qualified surveyor and can be arranged by a member of DABORACONWAY on your behalf. Each EPC is valid for a 10 year period.
A: Yes – Landlords/agents are required to provide a valid Gas Safety Certificate to the tenant for the start of the tenancy. A registered Gas Safe engineer will provide these and can be arranged by a member of DABORACONWAY on your behalf. Each certificate is valid for one year.
A: Yes - The Fire and Safety Regulations (soft furnishings) states that all furnishings (beds, sofas, chairs and the like) comply with the latest fire regulations.
You must ensure that you do not have any non-compliant furnishings in a rental property as failure to comply with the Furniture and Furnishings Regulations may constitute a criminal offence under the Consumer Protection Act 1987, which carries a maximum penalty or summary conviction of a £5,000 fine and/or six months imprisonment.
From 1st January 1997 all upholstered furniture in rented accommodation must comply with the fire resistance requirements of the Furniture and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations 1988 (as amended).
All upholstered or part-upholstered furniture is covered by the regulations including mattresses, pillows and cushions. Each piece of furniture that complies with these regulations should have a rectangular label permanently attached to it with the heading “CARELESSNESS CAUSES FIRE”.
If the furniture was produced prior to 1988 or does not have the above label, it will probably not comply (apart from antiques made before 1950).
A: Landlords are strongly recommended to have a professional inventory of the property. This is a detailed list of the property's condition and all the items contained within. This will protect the interests of both parties if a claim is made against a tenant’s deposit.
A: There is a duty for Landlords to ensure that electrical equipment is safe. There are several pieces of legislation affecting the safety of electrical equipment, including the Low Voltage Electrical Equipment Regulations 1989, the Electrical Equipment (Safety) Regulations 1994, the General Product Safety Regulations 1994 and the Plugs and Sockets (Safety Regulations) 1994. We also recommend the installation of smoke detectors.
A: Yes. As a Landlord you are responsible for ensuring that all portable electrical appliances that remain at the property have been certified as safe. This is done by implementing a PAT (Portable appliance-testing) programme for the property.
You will be held personally responsible and legally liable for any personal injury / fire damage resulting from unsafe appliances.
These appliances can include: Freezers, Fridges, Televisions, and Vacuum Cleaners etc…
A: In 2007 new regulations were brought in to assist tenants in the return of their deposits. The law applies to Assured Shorthold Tenancies created on or after 6th April 2007 in England and Wales. If the tenancy started on or after 6 April 2007, the Tenant's deposit must be protected in one of the government-approved schemes. If a deposit is not protected, the Landlords will be breaking the law, under Section 21 of the Housing Act 1988.
Under Section 21 of the Housing Act 1988 they will be unable to regain possession of the property using notice-only grounds. The Tenant can apply for a court order requiring the deposit to be protected, or for the prescribed information to be given to them. If the court finds that the Landlord has failed to comply with these requirements, or that the deposit is not being held in accordance with an authorised scheme, the court must either: