A guide to Letting your Property
We understand that letting your property can be stressful, so we make every effort to ensure the process goes as smoothly as possible, as quickly as possible and with the minimum of fuss. The following is a guide to what needs to be done.
Obtain your Mortgage Lenders’ & Landlord consent
If you have a mortgage on your property, it will be necessary for you to obtain the Bank or Building Society’s consent to let the property. If you are a leaseholder, it is essential that the intended letting is permitted under the lease of your property (“Head Lease”) and that the period of intended letting expires before the expiry of your Head Lease.
If the property is to be offered with furniture, all upholstery, furniture and soft furnishings must comply with the Furniture and Furnishings (fire)(safety) Regulations (as amended in 1989 and 1993). It is an offence to offer furniture that does not comply to these regulations and we strongly advise Landlords to ensure compliance by obtaining further information from the local Trading Standards office or by visiting the following website: https://www.gov.uk/find-local-trading-standards-office .
A gas safety certificate is required for all gas appliances at your rented property. All gas appliances must be inspected for safety and correct installation, by a GAS SAFETY registered engineer. The inspection must be carried out annually and a certificate must be given to the Tenant at the start of the tenancy.
Whilst there are no statutory requirements for providing an annual certificate for electrical safety, the Landlord has a legal obligation to ensure that all electrical equipment and installations are safe and in working order. We would therefore recommend that periodic inspections are carried out on all electrical appliances and installations by a qualified electrical engineer who is registered with a government-approved professional body such as NICEIC.
Arrange an EPC (Energy Performance Certificate)
From the 1st of October 2008 it is a legal requirement for all rental properties to have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC). The certificate will contain information about potential cost effective energy improvements and about further measures which may reduce energy use and carbon dioxide emissions including those which are not currently cost effective. The Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) should be carried out by a fully qualified, accredited Domestic Energy Assessor.
The building must be adequately insured and the Insurance Company must be made aware that the property is to be rented. The same will also apply to the contents of your property.
Properties built after June 1992 require a mains-operated inter-connected smoke alarm to be fitted on every level of the property. In Older properties it is recommended that at least battery operated smoke alarms are fitted on every level throughout the property. These should be tested at the start of each tenancy and periodically thereafter.
Inventories and Schedule of Condition
To avoid discrepancies at the end of a tenancy, an inventory and schedule of condition is essential for all properties and should be carried out by an independent inventory company. Without this, it may prove difficult to claim for damage or loss to the property from the tenant and an adjudicator may not consider a claim from the tenants’ deposit.
We strongly recommend that your property is professionally cleaned prior to the commencement of a new tenancy. This will be noted as such in the schedule of condition by the inventory clerk and will set the required standard of cleanliness for the tenant on termination of the tenancy, subject of course, to wear & tear.
Council Tax, Water Rates and Utilities
Payment for the supply of utilities is normally the responsibility of the tenant. Prior to letting your property, you should arrange for all utility accounts to be closed, ready for transfer into the new occupants’ name(s). It would be advisable for you to take final meter readings for your own records. M&M Property will notify the utility companies when a new tenancy commences where possible, however, this may not always be the case due to the data protection act. Please note the landlord is responsible for all utilities whilst the property is vacant.
It is recommended that you re-direct your mail from the property via the post office, to ensure safe delivery/keeping of your post.
As a UK Landlord, you are responsible for informing the Inland Revenue of any rent received for your property. Please be advised that we are obliged to deduct UK tax from rents collected on all properties where the Landlord is resident overseas. We strongly advise Landlords to seek specialist advice from an accountant or tax specialist.