Posts tagged canterbury

Reminder to Landlords: January Tax Return is now due – iConn Property Management, Canterbury


Rightmove have printed this relevant article taken from The Muney Advice Service, reminding Landlords to complete their tax return before the end of the month:

There’s more to being a landlord than collecting rental payments and deposits. Paying your tax is one job you really need to be on top of – and the clock is ticking.

You must complete the online tax return by 31 January (if you’ve not paid in another way by 31 October 2014) having registered for self-assessment by 5 October.

All landlords need to keep HMRC in the loop

You must inform HMRC as soon as you start renting out a property, even if you’ve not yet made any income from it. Once you have earned £2,500 in rental income, you may be liable to pay tax on it. Landlords whose properties generate more than this amount in rent each year must complete a Self-Assessment Tax Return.

How you can reduce or avoid a tax bill

The amount of tax you pay depends on the type of property you are renting out and your personal circumstances. The tax obligations are different for each of the three categories – residential properties, furnished holiday lets and commercial property.

As a buy-to-let landlord you – or your company – pay tax on any profit you make from renting your property to residential tenants. This means you don’t pay income tax on what are known as allowable expenses – and there are plenty of these to get your teeth into. For example, you can claim back letting agents and accountant’s fees. Maintenance and repairs are also covered, as are buildings and contents insurance premiums.

Keep a record of your property-related outgoings

There are plenty of elements to renting out property that you need to keep a record of, including Council Tax bills, any utility bills you pay on the rented property and other direct costs like advertising and phone calls to tenants. Even so, it’s probably best to seek professional advice when calculating tax obligations and allowance expenses. The HMRC Self-Assessment helpline can be reached on 0300 200 3310 if required.

What you can’t claim for

You can’t claim for capital expenses such as buying the place or renovating it, but can lodge a claim for wear and tear. Be aware through that excessive claims will be scrutinised, so don’t think the tax office will automatically claim for the cost of a new bathroom suite or a plush kitchen. HMRC allows you to claim up to 10 per cent of the net rent as a wear and tear allowance if you provide a furnished flat or house, but make sure you have the receipts to hand.

Cheap rentals and HMRC

Even if you don’t earn £2,500 a year from your tenants – after considering all the costs you can claim to reduce tax – you still need to keep HMRC in the picture. They will be able to help ensure you tick all the right boxes as a landlord. You can also visit the Money Advice Service’s guide on your responsibilities as a buy to let landlord for more information.



Source: Rightmove, on behalf of Money Advice Service


Numerous student properties still available for the next academic year – iConn Property Management, Canterbury



Calling all students still searching for their property for next year! We still have a few three, four, five and six beds available for the next academic year, some even offering FREE JULY and AUGUST RENT as well as NO DEPOSIT TO PAY!!


Furthermore, for all tenancies that are compelted within the specified time frames, you will be entered into a raffle with the chance to win £200 CASH!


Please check out our remaining properties on the link below, and should you wish to organise a viewing feel free to contact either Amy or Nadine in the Lettings Department, who will be happy to assist you :)

Staff Training Afternoon: Friday 19th December – iConn Property Management, Canterbury



Our offices will be closed from 1pm for a staff training afternoon tomorrow; if you have any emergencies please contact One Call Property Services on 07515369200.

For more information visit our website:

Landlord immigration checks – pilot scheme takes effect from 1st December 2014 – iConn Property Management, Canterbury


‘Nearly Legal’ has informed us all that pilot areas for the landlord immigration checks came into force from the 1st December, under the requirement of the Immigration Act 2014. These areas include Birmingham, Walsall, Sandwell, Dudley and Wolverhampton. Other areas are expected to be announced in 2015.


Giles Peaker writes:


The equipment will apply to all tenancies, leases below 7 years, sub-lets or lodging arrangements granted on or after 1 December 2014 in the affected areas. Existing or renewed agreements where the tenancy/lease/lodging etc. is continuous from before 1 December will not be affected.


Councils are exempted (including discharge of homeless duty via private sector), as are other social landlords (where they have already been required to consider prospective tenant’s immigration status before allocating them the property) and hostels and refuges ‘which are managed by social landlords, voluntary organisations or charities, or which are not operated on a commercial basis and whose operating costs are provided either wholly or in part by a government department or agency or a local authority’.


Here at iConn we’ll continue to monitor the situation and keep you all up informed as and when we know more, especially concerning Canterbury and the surrounding areas!



Student property list 2015-16 goes live – iConn Property Management, Canterbury



Calling all students looking for accommodation for the academic year 2015-16!!  Here at iConn we have just released out student property list detailing all available properties. Some are even offering FREE JULY AND AUGUST RENT and NO DEPOSIT TO PAY so check out our list now and contact either Amy or Nadine in the lettings department on 01227 765008 to arrange a viewing today! Visit the website below for more information:



General Gardening Services – iConn Property Management, Canterbury


CALLING ALL TENANTS!! For those of you who aren’t a fan of gardening, why not instruct our very reasonable gardener Pete from General Gardening Services to organise this for you? Or even obtain a quote!? Call 07814863228 for more information

UK rental prices rising at a slower rate – iConn Property Management, Canterbury


Another interesting article from Property Drum:

UK rental prices rose at a slower rate last month, with every region of the country witnessing smaller rises than in previous months, the latest index shows.

Fresh figures from the August HomeLet Rental Index reveal that the average rent in the UK now stands at £921 a month, compared to £851 a year ago.

The average monthly variation in rent across the UK was 2.3 per cent, led by the South East at 3 per cent and London at 2.4 per cent. The biggest drop in rental prices was recorded in the North West, down 3.5 per cent month-on-month.

Martin Totty (left), Chief Executive of the Barbon Insurance Group, which owns HomeLet, commented, “August can traditionally be a slower month for the rental market and similar dips have been seen in rental prices in previous years.”

“Nevertheless, the cooling in the rental sector may prove to represent the beginning of a trend towards a more settled market after several months of much more significant growth. A similar cooling has been seen in the wider housing market, with house price indices recording an easing of house price growth,” he added.

On an annualised basis rental growth remains firm, with only the North East and the East Midlands reporting lower rents for new tenancies in August than in the same month of last year.

Across the UK, the average private home rent increased by 8.2 per cent over the year to August 2014. In London, rents were up by 11.4 per cent on a year ago, while East Anglia saw annual growth of 8.4 pent cent and the South East 5.3 per cent.

Landlords in the UK are now estimated to be collectively earning more than £32 billion a year, or almost £2.7 billion per month, in rental income annually, according to new analysis by Direct Line for Business (DL4B).

Landlords in London collect the largest proportion of private rental income in England at £14 billion per year, more than the North East, East Midlands, West Midlands, Yorkshire and East Anglia combined.

In total, 44 per cent of the entire country’s rent is paid in London. Outside the capital, Leeds pays the greatest amount of any city, with annual private rent totalling £565 million, followed by Birmingham at £521 million and Manchester at £401 million.
“Buy to let is becoming an increasingly attractive option for people as property prices continue to soar,” said Jazz Gakhal head of DL4B.

With landlords now playing an increasingly important role in the private rented sector (PRS), the Government last week launched a new PRS code, designed to provide guidance for letting agents and landlords on how to achieve high standards.

Ian Fletcher, Director of Policy at the British Property Federation, one of 17 organisations that assisted with the code, said: “As the private rented sector grows, it is coming under more and more scrutiny, and it is important that good practice is constantly encouraged and promoted.”

Christopher Hamer (right), the Ombudsman, said, “The new Code is a milestone for the industry as it provides a set of principles for every landlord and letting agent in the private rented sector to follow, which TPO has championed the idea of for many years.

“The new Code will act as a complementary pathway to the more detailed standards in TPO’s Lettings Code of Practice that was established in 2006 and which forms the basis of the decisions I make when reviewing disputes between member letting agents and landlords or tenants.”

“The overarching principles outlined in the new Code will ensure agents, landlords and investors across the industry have a shared understanding of what levels of service to expect from agents letting and managing property in the private rented sector in England.”

More than 11,500 letting agents are already following TPO’s Code of Practice, which enables their landlords and tenants to access TPO’s free, fair and independent dispute resolution service.

TPO member agents will not be required to take any action following last week’s launch of the PRS Code, as their membership and commitment to follow TPO’s detailed Code of Practice means that they already meet the principles outlined in the new PRS Code.


Source: Property Drum –—the-newsbeat-from-PROPERTYdrum124/Rent-increases-slow-down-as-new-PRS-Code-is-launched.aspx?utm_source=BriefYourMarket&utm_medium=Newsletter%2c+Email&utm_term=&utm_content=JUNGLEdrum+-+the+newsbeat+from+PROPERTYdrum&


Student Key Collection – iConn Property Management, Canterbury



For all of you students for 2014 – 2015 planning on collecting your keys on Monday 1st September, as long as all of your paperwork has been completed and monies received (check with the lettings team on 01227 765008 if you have any queries), then our office is open between 9am and 5:30pm. We are located on Castle Street in Canterbury, CT1 2PU.


**Please remember all paperwork and monies will have needed to have been received in order to release keys; you would have received an email and also a telephone call should there be anything outstanding on your file**

Rooms available for professionals – iConn Property Managament, Canterbury


Calling all professionals looking for a room available in a shared house! We have rooms located in Gordon Road, Tudor Road, Sturry Road, Old Park Avenue and Castle Street ranging from £310 PCM to £358 PCM! Call us today to organise a viewing!

Calling all Students – iConn Property Management


Not only are all of our properties including free summer rent, but now free admin fees too! Contact iConn on 01227 765008 to arrange a viewing today!

Tenants to undergo immigration checks from October – iConn Property Management, Canterbury


Another interesting read by Rosalind Renshaw on behalf of Property Industry Eye:

The checking of prospective tenants’ immigration status by landlords and agents is set to become mandatory in October.

It follows the Royal Assent of the Immigration Bill last week – just days before the Home Secretary ordered an urgent investigation into an immigration documentation scam at the weekend.

Although the checking requirement – which will almost certainly fall upon letting agents who act for landlords – was highly controversial, it forms part of what is now law.

Its aim is to prevent people with no right to be in the UK from accessing private rented housing. The requirement specifically applies to the private rented sector, not the social sector.

Landlords – or their agents – will have to request to see at least one document from a specified list, yet to be published, to confirm if prospective tenants have the right to live in the UK.

The requirement will mean having to check all applicants – for example, birth certificates of those born in the UK, and passports, but checks might have to extend to much more complicated paperwork or its lack.

If the prospective tenant does not have permission to live in the UK and the property is subsequently let, the landlord could be fined up to £3,000.

If a tenant’s right to be in the UK has a time limit, checks must also be made either annually or before the expiry date if that is after 12 months. Failure to carry out these subsequent checks will also attract fines of up to £3,000.

There is also an obligation on landlords – or agents – to report to the authorities any suspicions that tenants might be illegal immigrants.

The landlord’s responsibility to make the checks and face the fines can be transferred to a letting agent, but that must be done specifically in writing – suggesting that agents will have to revisit their standard contracts, terms and conditions.

They will also need to see if their current referencing checks cover immigration status.

Agents and landlords should also be aware of some of the issues surrounding their new responsibility, not least that they could become liable to accusations of discriminatory practice.

There is also concern as to how far the responsibility extends. Lawyer Simon Kenny, of Moore Blatch, says: “If, for example, a landlord notes from the tenant’s visa that he has the right to live in the UK but not to work, does he breach these rules if he is also aware through credit referencing that the tenant works full-time?

“It seems at least possible such a landlord could also be prosecuted in respect of ‘facilitating a breach of immigration law’ in this situation – an offence with a penalty of imprisonment.

“Guidelines are expected to say that a passport will be the main method of checking a prospective tenant’s immigration status.

“There is also likely to be an online checking facility, where the immigration status of a prospective tenant can be found, together with a free telephone checking service.

The Home Office may also confirm that the new system will be piloted in one area before being rolled out across the UK.

A good blog which outlines the main issues is at the link below this story.

However, it was written before any mention could be made of the latest scam, by which immigrants who speak no English can buy, for £500, a certificate saying they have passed a language test.

The false documentation could open the door to British citizenship but as yet there is no advice as to how letting agents or landlords could detect false paperwork.

Home Secretary Teresa May has ordered an urgent investigation.



Agents to suffer if ban on tenant fees are implemented – iConn Property Managment, Canterbury


Another interesting read from Property Industry Eye:

Eric Walker, managing director of Northwood, was scathing about Labour’s proposals, including the pledge to make it illegal for agents to charge fees to tenants.

He said some agents would not be able to survive such a move. “Contrary to the universal misconception that agents are raking it in, many make small profits indeed and this policy may push some over the edge.”

He went on: “If agents are forced to scrap fees from tenants, then inevitably, landlords will end up paying more which in turn could increase the rent the tenant pays.

“Couple this with the proposed draconian rent-capping idea, then of course some landlords will reconsider their position.

“It is of sinister concern that rent caps would be introduced at a time interest rates are predicted to rise, which spells disaster for many landlords.

“The lettings market is fine. It’s regulation and consumer protection which should be Miliband’s priority, not State controlled pricing.”

Carole Charge, director at lettings chain Leaders, said: “Labour’s three-year tenancy proposals are unrealistic. Without the right to regain repossession of their property, most investment landlords would not take the risk and pull their property from the market.

“The picture painted by Labour of tenants being forced out of their homes is not accurate. Reliable statistics show that the majority of tenancies are ended by the tenant rather than the landlord.”

Dorian Gonsalves, director of franchising at Belvoir, said his firm would be “dead against” the changes proposed.

“The existing Assured Shorthold Tenancy agreement can already run for a longer period, and changes to this could have a devastating effect on the supply of available rental properties.

“Ultimately, tenants would bear the brunt of fewer rental properties, higher rents and no alternative housing solution being provided by the Government.

“Experts have warned of the dangers of making changes to the existing AST or forcing landlords out of the market, which clearly some of these proposed changes by a Labour Government are likely to do.

“Tenants already have the choice of not paying letting agent fees. They can rent privately and this may be attractive to those tenants who prefer a lower standard of service, with no consumer redress and a landlord who may or may not respond to maintenance issues.”

Carol Pawsey, lettings director at Kinleigh Folkard & Hayward, described Labour’s proposals as “disastrous”. She warned that rent caps could lead to “many” landlords quitting the market.

The National Landlords Association said the proposals were “completely unworkable”.

Richard Lambert, its chief executive, said: “Were they to become government policy it would strike a devastating blow to investment in housing of all tenures and further constrain supply at a time of real housing crisis.”

The Residential Landlords Association said Labour had quite simply got it wrong. Vice-chairman Chris Town said: “All the evidence clearly shows that rent controls of the kind proposed would critically undermine investment in new homes to rent and are not needed, given that official statistics show rents increasing by much less than inflation.”

The British Property Federation also savaged the rent controls proposal. Director of policy Ian Fletcher said: “It makes no sense.

“Good landlords will be getting a perverse message that if you are providing a premium product the most you can expect is the ‘average’, whilst bad landlords with sub-standard accommodation can find another justification for charging over the odds.”

Source: Written by Rosalind Renshaw on behalf of Property Industry Eye




























Breaking News from Property Industry Eye – iConn Property Management



Check out this article we’ve found where ARLA accuses the Labour shadow housing minister in a row over ‘reforms’:


The lettings industry has poured scorn and fury on Labour’s proposed reforms for the private rented sector, amid fears that landlords will desert the industry in droves.

Labour – keen to capture votes from Generation Rent – plans to introduce three-year tenancies as the norm, impose rent controls, and ban agents from charging fees to tenants.

It would also make evictions harder. Landlords would have to give two months’ notice and cite one of three grounds – sale of property, rent arrears, or anti-social behaviour.

However, tenants would be able to give one month’s notice whenever they wished.

Tenancies would run for a six-month probation period, and then automatically continue for another 29 months.

Ian Potter, managing director of ARLA, accused Labour of political posturing ahead of this month’s local and European elections.

He warned that the proposals would cause “lasting damage” to the supply and quality of private rental homes, and said that none of the reforms proposed were the ones actually needed to protect consumers.

In Labour’s pledges, there is no mention of protection of client money, or regulation of the industry to impose minimum standards and stop anyone setting up as a letting agent as well as drive out crooks.

Potter said that Labour’s stance appeared to be quite different from when Jack Dromey was shadow housing minister, and added: “Emma Reynolds, the current shadow housing minister, has ducked and dived, and consistently refused to engage with us.”

He said: “Political posturing, when it has such an impact on people’s lives, is unfair.”

He also pointed out that three-year tenancies will have to be enacted by deed and require a legal presence.

He said: “Tactics such as proposals for rent controls may gain traction, but a simple history lesson looking at similar policies from 1919, 1939 and the 1960s will show that they only lead to a significant lack of investment in existing properties and new rentals. Labour’s pledge is short-sighted.”

Meanwhile, Emma Reynolds herself took to Twitter to send out a series of messages about the reforms, including accusations that the Tories had abandoned Generation Rent. She also tweeted: “We are proposing predictable rents so that tenants and landlords can plan & have certainty. The market will set rent at start of tenancy.”

Trade union Unite said Labour’s proposals were “a progressive step forward”.


Source: Written by Rosalind Renshaw on behalf of Property Industry Eye



How to avoid Condensation & Damp, iConn Property Management Canterbury


Samantha Hooper, Lettings Negotiator at iConn Property Management writes;

Autumn season has arrived and we have been experiencing a lot of rain over the last few days!  At this time of year, our tenants start drying clothes inside their homes, which later down the line can result in damp / condensation build up in the property.  Here’s a few tips on how to avoid this common problem!


Open bedroom windows when you go to bed at night; a 10mm gap will do. If it really is too cold to do this, wipe the condensation off the windows first thing in the morning, but please do not put the cloth you used on the radiator to dry as this will create more condensation.


Ensure full use of extractor or ventilation fans. Where these are not provided, open a window after bathing or showering to give the steam and damp air a chance to escape. Wipe windows, walls and mirrors to remove condensation (a microfiber cloth is the most efficient means of doing this), and dry the shower tray or bath. Keep the door closed while the bathroom is in use to prevent the steam escaping to other parts of the house.


When cooking, cover pans. Use exactor or ventilation fans where provided. If you do not have an automatic kettle, take care to ensure it is not left boiling. These precautions will help to reduce steam and therefore moisture in the air. Keep the door closed while the kitchen is in use to prevent the steam escaping to other parts of the house.


Where there are chimneys, do not block them up. If a wall appears to be damp, do not put furniture right up against it; allow some circulation of air.


Make sure that any ventilation bricks or openings in the building are not obstructed.


Keep glass as clear of condensation as you can. Wipe away any moisture that has formed using a soft cloth. Leave open any ”trickle” vents in double glazed units. Get into the habit of opening windows to keep moisture content in the air down and to air the property when you can.


Avoid drying clothes on radiators. Tumble dryers should be vented to the outside, unless fitted with a condenser.


Provide a reasonable level of heating (no less than 10°C in an unused area, or 16C if in use); cold rooms are susceptible to condensation. Remember, the best way to heat a room and avoid condensation is to maintain a low level of warmth throughout the day rather than to turn the heating off while you are out and put it on at a high level when you return home.


Portable gas and paraffin heaters can create a significant amount of damp and condensation within properties. Please do not use these types of heaters unless you have permission from your landlord or property manager.


Mildew may be removed from clothes by using a dry cleaning process.


Remove and kill mould by wiping the affected area(s) with a fungicide which carries a Health and Safety Executive approval number, precisely following the manufactures instructions. Alternatively a mild bleach solution will have the desired effect, but do test on a small area first.

Do not disturb mould by vacuuming or brushing as this can give rise to respiratory complaints.



Wedding Announcement and Congrats!! iConn Property Management, Canterbury


Iris O’Connell, Managing Director at iConn Property Management writes;

A huge congratulations to our Accounts Coordinator, Samantha Douglas who tied the knot to Shaun Burgess this month! We hope you had a fantastic day, and we wish you lots of happy years together! :)







Staff success! iConn Property Management Canterbury


Iris O’Connell, Managing Director at iConn Property Management writes;

We are pleased to announce that our Property Manager Tanya MacLeod has recently passed all four units of the NFOPP Level 3 Qualification for the Technical Award in Residential Letting & Property Management, and our Lettings Negotiator, Sam Macdonald is also on her way and passed the first unit towards her qualification last week!  Well done to both of you!


Be safe this summer! iConn Property Management, Canterbury


Tanya MacLeod, Property Manager at iConn Property Management writes:

This article from the Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA) is a very interesting and informative read.

With millions of Britons planning to holiday in the UK this year the Gas Safety Register are again urging the public to stay safe from the dangers of carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning from charcoal and gas barbecues, as well as potential risks from camping equipment and gas appliances in holiday accommodation.
The Gas Safety Register have produced leaflets, posters, web banners and article copy to advise people how to stay safe while on holiday, attending a music festival, sporting event or any one of the hundreds of things the Great British public get up to in their leisure time.

BBQ’s have been linked to several campsite deaths caused by carbon monoxide poisoning. Carbon monoxide is a highly poisonous substance which is created when ­fossil fuels such as gas and solid fuels like charcoal and wood fail to combust fully due to a lack of oxygen. You can’t see it, taste it or smell it but it can kill quickly with no warning.

If you’re planning on using a BBQ, whether it’s a disposable one, gas or charcoal make sure you keep yourself safe and don’t put yourself at risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. Follow these top tips for BBQ safety:

  • Never take a smouldering or lit BBQ into a tent, caravan or cabin. Even if you have finished cooking your BBQ should remain outside as it will still give off fumes for some hours after use.
  • Never use a BBQ inside to keep you warm
  • Never leave a lit BBQ unattended or while sleeping
  • Place your cooking area well away from your tent. Always ensure there is an adequate supply of fresh air in the area where the BBQ is being used.
  • Only use appliances in accordance with the operating instructions
  • Remember the signs and symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning – headaches, dizziness, breathlessness, nausea, collapse and loss of consciousness. If concerned, seek medical advice.

If you’re using gas camping equipment follow these extra tips to help you stay safe:

  • Check that the appliance is in good order, undamaged and that hoses are properly attached and undamaged. If in doubt get the hoses replaced or don’t use it
  • Make sure the gas taps are turned off before changing the gas cylinder and do it in the open air
  • Don’t over-tighten joints
  • When you have finished cooking, turn off the gas cylinder before you turn off the BBQ controls – this means any gas in the hose and pipeline will be used up
  • Read the manufacturer’s instructions about how to check for gas escapes from hoses or pipework, e.g. brushing leak detection solution around all joints and looking for bubbles.
  • Never take a gas stove, light or heater into a tent, caravan or cabin unless it is a permanent fixture, installed and maintained correctly.

Take care this summer and don’t put yourself or your family at risk.

For more information or advice please visit or call 0800 408 5500.


A tip for tenants, iConn Property Management














Sam Macdonald, Lettings Negotiator at iConn Property Management writes;

After a long winter, tenants should definitely make the most of the sunshine while its here! There is nothing better than the fresh smell of your clothes that have come straight from your washing line!  ‘Sun drying’ can also help you save money and energy!

5 reasons why you should dry your washing outside:

  1. Your clothes and bedding will smell fresh a daisy.
  2. Sunlight is a natural sanitizing and bleaching agent, therefore will get rid of insects, bacteria, and other germs.
  3. You will save money on your electricity bill as you don’t need to use a dryer.
  4. Drying on the line is kinder to your clothes, they last longer and the elastic in your socks is less likely to disappear!
  5. Drying your clothes on a radiator in the house can cause damp and mould to your property.



New Member of the iConn Team


Iris O’Connell, Managing Director of iConn Property Management writes:

I am pleased to announce that we have a new Property Manager.

Tanya Macleod has worked for over six years in the Lettings and Property Management industry and specialises in Property Management.

She has previously worked for a well known large Agent in Canterbury and brings with her a wealth of knowledge.

Going forward, if you have any maintenance queries, please contact Tanya in the first instance




STUDENT REMINDER!! iConn Property Management, Canterbury


Sam Macdonald, Lettings Negotiator for iConn Property Management writes;






REMINDER!! Student Tenancies for 2013-2014 – Your administration fees are due to be paid by the 1st May 2013… remember to budget for this in the next month :)




D.Kellond – Landlord with iConn Property Management, Canterbury


This was our first experience of using iConn Ltd to rent out our home and it was a seemless and problem-free experience.  The personnel were knowledgeable, professional and responsive to our numerous questions!  Most importantly, they were proactive and arranged good quality viewings which resulted in several offers within a week of taking on the property.  I would not hesitate to recommend that other prospective landlords use iConn and am delighted that we chose them to work with.



The North wind doth blow and we shall have snow….


Vicky Owen, Office Manager for iConn Property Management writes:

As most of Canterbury was covered with snow this week, which caused some disruption in Canterbury but also some great snowmen! its a good time to think on the winter repairs that may need attending to. Our referencing company LetRisks send us a monthly newsletter in line with trends they recieve on claims, they have really interesting article on inspecting flat roofs which is worth a read: Click on the link below for the full article:









Census Information and Findings – For Landlords


Vicky Owen, Office Manager for iConn Property Management writes:

I recently came across an article online regarding the recent census and the meaning behind the findings, I think it is a really useful tool for Landlords to understand for their current or furture investments:

The 2011 census highlighted that the cost for private tenants  in renting unfurnished properties (including the cost of rent together with fuel and power) has increased by 60% in the last 10 years, whereas their gross incomes have only increased by 31% in the same period.

The pressure to pay rent and meet all other outgoings has intensified and Shelter reported earlier in January that  1.4 million people in Britain are falling behind with their rent or mortgage payments.

According to a recent YouGov survey the number of people struggling to pay their rent or mortgage each month has increased by 44% over the past year, to 7.8 million people.

Their research also revealed that over the past year:

  • Almost a million people used a payday loan to help pay their rent or mortgage.
  • 2.8 million people used an unauthorised overdraft to help pay their rent or mortgage and of those 10% did so every month.

These uncomfortable statistics highlight the need for letting agents and landlords to carry out thorough checks on applicants when letting a property, including:

  • Obtain a credit check – Individuals with good credit histories are generally good tenants.
  • Obtain landlords and employment references.
  • If you have any doubts on the applicants ability to afford the rent, ask them to provide further proof, for example copies of payslips or a minimum of 6 months bank statements.
  • Arrange insurance cover for legal expenses and rent protection should the tenant default on the rent. LetRisks offers a wide choice of innovative solutions for protecting landlords against unpaid Rent to suit a variety of landlord pockets. Legal Expenses of up to £50,000 to obtain possession comes as standard with all policies and we can help recover unpaid rents.


Christmas Fault Reporting for iConns Managed Properties



iConn’s Day Out Spreading Some Christmas Cheer :) – (Canterbury Letting Agent)

Iris O’Connell, Managing Director for iConn Property Management writes:
Christmas is a time for giving and every year the staff at iConn donate their time to spread some Christmas cheer in the local community.
The staff at iConn teamed up with the Body Shop and had a fantastic time visiting three homes for the elderly in the Canterbury area delivering to them gifts of chocolates and Body Shop goodies along with providing hand massages for the elderly residents. iConn would like to thank the Managers, staff and residents of Saxon Lodge in Bridge, Highfield Care Home in Bekesbourne and The Red House Nursing Home in Canterbury for allowing us to come and visit your homes and for allowing us to spend time with all your wonderful residents.
We would like to wish you all a very Happy Christmas and a wonderful New Year.

Student Lettings List for 2013-2014 for Canterbury is released


Sam Macdonald, Lettings Negotiator at iConn Property Management writes:

Our new lettings list for July 2013 – June 2014 is now available, click on the image below to view in full :)

Early signs show a busy student market for this year so are not expecting these properties to be on the market for long.

























Wedding Announcement – iConn Property Management’s Vicky Cranthorne ties the knot :)


Iris O’Connell, Managing Director of iConn Property Management writes:

























iConn Property Management are pleased to announce the marriage of our colleague Vicky Cranthorne to Colin Alun Owen.

Some of our clients and tenants may have noticed the name change already! 😉

Thank you to the new Mr & Mrs Owen for sharing their magical day with us and we wish you much love and happiness for the future.



Social Media for Property Advertising – iConn Lettings, Canterbury


Vicky Owen, Office Manager at iConn Property Management writes:

Over the past few years the way we advertise and market properties to rent has evolved dramatically! Prospective tenants have replaced peering in the window fronts of local agents with anytime internet search sites giants like Rightmove, Primelocation and Findaproperty.

In a age where Internet is King – with nearly 98% of our sucessfully let properties coming from an internet enquiry, it is important for us to keep up with our prospective tenant habits.

We now take “Featured Property” slots on the three largest property portals –;; meaning that our clients properties are advertised at the top of the page, seperating them from the competition, highlighting them first and giving their properties a head start.










Now we see another change to the media market with the use of social media sites becoming more popular and opening companies out to interactive, on the spot feedback; the biggest being Facebook and Twitter… even the mighty property portals now provide links for people to “Like” or “Share” their properties on their page!

We have now signed up to PropertyPlace which is an app on these sites created to advertise properties which has over 10,000 monthly users showing the evolution of these social sites to a place of advertising potential.

Our social media sites are growing by the day, with our company Facebook page having nearly 350 likes, our Twitter account has over 600 followers coupled with our blog following and our LinkedIn sites and the new Google+ page – we are bringing our properties to a new market.

Although this highlights the benefits to our Clients as this new advertising potential unfolds, there is a huge benefit to the prospective tenants – social media is instant, with property portals taking up to 24 hours to update their new listings – social sites provide an exclusivity in a fast moving rental market. It provides interaction for the customer not only with the company that is advertising but also with their friends: liking a property or commenting on a post spreads their activity to all their friends who then comment with advice or provide feedback for that person.

The secret to this social media growth is connectivity, interesting and relevant posts and recommendations. Please take a moment to explore our sites and by providing recommendations or getting involved and interactive with us helps us to broaden our auidence which in turn benefits our clients and tenants.

Click on the links to join in:





You can link with our personal Linkedin Profiles here to:








Common Questions from Tenants (Canterbury Lettings)


Sam Macdonald, Lettings Negotiator for iConn Property Management writes:

ARLA (Association of Residential Letting Agents) supplies lots of answers to common questions which tenants might need to know.

This link takes tenants direct to their website:

Here is one of the questions I spotted earlier which I thought would be useful to know:

What About Rights Of Access To The Property, What Are The Rules?

A landlord, or his agent, or someone authorised to act on his behalf has a right to view the property to assess its condition and to carry out necessary repairs or maintenance at reasonable times of the day. The law says that a landlord or agent must give a tenant at least 24 hours prior notice in writing (except in an emergency) of such a visit. Naturally, if the tenant agrees, on specific or odd occasions to allow access without the 24 hours prior written notice, that is acceptable. [A clause in the tenancy agreement which tries to diminish or over-ride a tenant’s rights in this respect would be void and unenforceable.]

iConn Property Management Sponsers Kent Student Law Society – Univeristy of Kent, Canterbury


We are pleased to announce that iConn are sponsors of the ‘Kent Student Law Society’

They are one of the largest societies on the University of Kent’s Canterbury Campus and represent students who study Law.














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