Yes, where the property is subject to a mortgage, it will normally be a condition of the mortgage that the property owner or mortgagor cannot let the property without prior permission of the Mortgage Company or lender. Permissions should be checked prior to letting.
Most lenders are prepared to allow the mortgagor to let the property but many will ask to see a copy of the tenancy agreement and associated documentation before agreeing to the tenancy (and may charge an administration fee for these checks) Some lenders will also insist that the mortgagor pays a higher interest rate whilst the property is let.
Most mortgage lenders will also require that the property is covered by an appropriate buildings insurance policy. It is good practice to check that all necessary insurance policies are in place before a tenancy is granted.
Yes, you do need an EPC. Legislation brought about in October 2008 stipulates that all properties for rental must have an EPC to allow for Agents to market the property details.
An Energy Performance Certificate shows the official energy rating of a property.
From October 2008 Landlords will have to provide their tenant with a certificate and this remains valid for a 10 year period.
The certificate provides a rating for the property, showing its energy efficiency and its environmental impact on a scale from A–G (where A is the most efficient and G the least efficient). It also contains recommended ways to improve the property’s energy performance.
iConn offers three levels of service: Management, Rent collection and Tenant Find. For full details please see our services guide. For a fee breakdown please email or contact us direct.
A representative of iConn will visit your property and assess the potential rental value you may achieve based on current market conditions.
It is entirely up to you whether you let the property; fully furnished, partly furnished or unfurnished. What you need to consider is what type of tenant you are looking for. It is best to be quite flexible and offer the property in a way to fit the needs of the tenant. If you do decide to furnish or part furnish the property, you must understand that you have to allow for fair wear and tear with regards to the use of the furniture. All items provided in the property must be accounted for on an Inventory and its condition recorded.
The Furniture and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations 1988 Amended 1993:
It is an offence to supply in a property any furniture that does not comply with the regulations. The regulations cover all upholstered furniture and furnishings with permanent or loose covers, including cushions, pillows and headboards which must be able to pass a smouldering cigarette and ‘match flame’ test and carry labels to prove it. Failure to comply with the regulations carries a fine and or imprisonment and in addition a Tenant could sue you for damages against any loss or injury caused as a result of a breach. Furniture manufactured prior to 1950 is exempt. There are also stringent controls on houses in multiple occupation (i.e. sharers) involving formal registration with your local council which we can undertake on your behalf.
An inventory is a binding legal document, providing an accurate record of the condition and contents of a property at the beginning of a tenancy. It forms part of the Tenancy agreement between a landlord and tenant. All defects and soiling must be noted in detail in the inventory in order to ensure that a landlord is able to prove whether a tenant caused damage or is liable for cleaning costs at the end of the tenancy.
Many landlords who let out their properties think that a list of items is adequate. However, if a dispute arises you may have to go to court and a simple list of items will not be of much use. For problems with tenancies created after April 2007 landlords will be bound by the UK government’s Tenancy Deposit Scheme arbitration system. If a deposit is taken from a tenant, a detailed Inventory and schedule of condition will need to be prepared. iConn offers an in house Inventory service by qualified APIP members. (Association of Professional Inventory Providers)
Yes, we carry out full credit checks and full comprehensive checks which are inclusive of employer’s reference and previous landlord reference. There are times when a potential tenant may have a suitable credit history but their salaries may not be sufficient enough to pass the reference procedure, in these circumstances, we ask for a Guarantor or full settlement of rent in advance of the full term of the tenancy. Student tenants have to provide details of a Guarantor as students cannot be referenced due to a lack of previous work history.
We collect a deposit from the tenant on behalf of the Landlord. We hold the deposit as stakeholder and it is protected within the (TDS) Tenancy Deposit Scheme.
Many landlords in the private sector receive a deposit against possible non–payment of rent or damage to property. When a tenancy comes to an end, there is usually no disagreement about the return of the deposit. But sometimes there is, and this can cause much hardship and inconvenience to both landlord and tenant.
The Housing Act 2004 (Chapter 4, sections 212–5; & Schedule 10) made provision for both the protection of tenancy deposits and the resolution of disputes over their return. The Dispute Service has been awarded a contract by the Government to run one such scheme: The Tenancy Deposit Scheme (TDS).
The legislation came into effect on 6 April 2007. All deposits taken for Assured Shorthold Tenancies after that date must be covered by a tenancy deposit protection scheme.
As a landlord, you are legally responsible for the safety of your tenants in relation to gas safety. By Law you must:
- Repair and maintain gas pipe work, flues and appliances (permanent or portable) in safe condition.
- Ensure an annual gas safety check on each appliance and flue.
- Keep a record of each safety check and provide this information to the tenant.
You should also keep your tenants informed about their responsibilities while they are staying in your property.
Whilst the tenant is residing at the property, the tenant is responsible for paying the council tax unless other wise stated in the tenancy agreement. When the tenancy ends and the property is empty, the Landlord or home owner is responsible for paying the council tax.
The tenant is responsible for paying the TV licence if he or she has a television in the property.
As a Landlord you will require adequate buildings Insurance, contents Insurance for all fixtures and fittings and any items that you leave in the property for the tenants use and Public Liability cover. Tenants are responsible for insuring their own contents they bring to the property.
Depending on the level of service we provide, the rent is collected as follows:
For clients receiving our full management services, we collect the rent via standing order and transfer the rental income direct to your designated account minus our management fee and any other expenditure for that month.
For clients receiving our Rent collection service, we collect the rent via standing order from the tenant and transfer the rental income to your designated account minus our Rent Collection fee.
For clients receiving our Tenant Find Service, we collect the first months rent direct from the tenant and transfer the balance of the rent minus our Tenant find fee direct to your designated account. All subsequent rental payments will be paid direct to your account via a standing order from the tenant.
Income tax is payable on any profit from rental income paid to you whether in the UK or abroad.
You must declare or submit your income Tax return to the Inland Revenue. The Inland Revenue will tell you how much tax if any is payable. This will be done when the Inland Revenue assesses your return.
Alternatively you can calculate what profit you made before hand so you can anticipate the liability or declare a loss to be carried forward by way of a self assessment Tax Return form. If the form is not issued automatically you have a legal duty to notify the Inland Revenue of any liability.
The Inland Revenue assesses income individually so properties that are jointly owned require returns to be completed by each legal owner. The Inland Revenue can assist you in completing your Tax return but you must sign the form and confirm that to the best of your knowledge it is correct and complete.
An accountant can provide the Service to you for an agreed fee.
When letting property and collecting rents for Non UK resident Landlords (NRL) i.e. landlords living overseas, the Agent is obliged by the Income and Corporation Taxes Act 1988 and the Taxation of Income from land (Non Residents) Regulations 1995 to deduct tax (at the basic rate) to cover any tax liability; unless the Landlord has been authorised in writing by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) to receive rent gross. In this situation the Agent also requests that the Landlord appoints an accountant or reserves to the Agent the right to employ a suitably qualified accountant in order to manage correspondence with the Inland Revenue. A standard annual charge will be made for this work and the Agent may charge reasonable administration expenses for further work requested by the landlord, the landlord’s accountant or the HMRC in connection with such tax liabilities. In many cases, a landlord’s tax liability is minimal when allowable costs are deducted.