When renting out your property to tenants, there are certain landlord responsibilities you will have to meet during the tenancy. We explain what those are in more detail below.
Before anyone can move into the property you must verify the tenant’s UK residency status to ensure they have a legal right to live in the property. This is a ‘right to rent’ check and applies to agreements made on or after February 1, 2016. A passport or residence document is acceptable, while non-EU nationals must show a passport that confirms their right to be in the UK.
Once the tenancy is due to begin, landlords must provide:
- A gas safety certificate to demonstrate the safety of gas flues, pipework and appliances
- An energy performance certificate (EPC) which must have a minimum rating of ‘E’
A copy of the How to Rent Guide must also be given to tenants on an assured shorthold tenancy.
Landlords must place tenancy deposits into a government-accredited scheme (Deposit Protection Service, MyDeposits or Tenancy Deposit Scheme) within 30 days of receipt and provide the tenant with full details of the organisation. They also have to inform them of the process that can be followed if there is any dispute about the amount returned at the end of the tenancy.
Not using a deposit scheme could lead to the tenant claiming compensation and will make it more difficult for you to end the tenancy.
This only applies to assured shorthold tenancies as lodger’s deposits do not require protection.
Repair and maintenance
As stated in the tenancy agreement, the landlord will be responsible for any repairs and maintenance required in the property during the tenancy.
If you wish to inspect the property for its condition, carry out repairs, or allow a professional to do so, you must:
- Give 24 hours’ notice in writing
- Ensure the visit takes place at a reasonable time
The landlord is also responsible for ensuring the safety of tenants during their stay in the property. This includes:
- Organising a gas safety check from a Gas Safe registered engineer every 12 months.
- Ensuring the electrics in the property are safe (for HMO properties a check by a qualified electrician must be conducted every 5 years).
- Installing smoke alarms on every floor along with carbon monoxide detectors in rooms that have a wood burning stove or coal fire.
If rent is collected weekly landlords must have a rent book to help record payments. Rent increases must be made in writing. Rent can be increased if the tenant:
- Signs a new contract
- Agrees to higher rent charges
- Has a rent review clause in the tenancy agreement
- Is issued a section 13 rent increase notice
Leaving the property
Landlords must follow the notice periods laid out in the tenancy agreement. If this is not done it could be deemed as an illegal eviction and the tenant could seek compensation.
In cases of eviction, the landlord must seek a court order before any bailiffs can be used to force the tenant from the property.
On a periodic tenancy, if the tenant wishes to leave before the agreed notice period they must first seek the landlord’s approval.
Why use a Letting Agents?
As you can see from the points above, there are a wide range of responsibilities when letting out a property. Therefore, many landlords often use a letting agency to help them manage their property. This means that the letting agent will take care of some or all of the landlord responsibilities from simply letting the property and collecting the rent to taking care of the property and any tenant disputes.
Looking to let property in Willesden Green? At Regal, we offer a variety of letting services in Willesden Green and the surrounding North West London area. Our services include let only, rent collection, full property management and HMO management.
If you would like further information about our letting services in Willesden Green and the surrounding North London areas, please get in touch with our expert lettings team today who will be happy to help.