Legal Requirements For Landlords

Whilst this is not an exhaustive list of legal requirements it should give you an idea of the major legal requirement’s to consider.

It is important to note if you property is for 3 or more people there may be specialist Housing of Multiple Occupancy legislation that you have to comply with, which is not detailed here.

Let’s start from the beginning…

Consent to Let: Many mortgages allow you to rent out your property, but equally many don’t so it is important you seek approval from your lender as it may breach the terms of your agreement if you don’t.

Restrictions in your leasehold agreement: This is not that common in the North East but if your property is a leasehold property there maybe restrictions when it comes to renting your property. This is most common in blocks of flats and if you are worried have a read of your lease.

Informing your insurance provider: Again you may or may not have a policy that covers you for rental, better be safe than sorry – so check your policy!

Signing the Tenancy Agreement: By instructing your Estate Agent you will create a Principal-Agent relationship which allows the agent to sign the agreement on your behalf. However, make sure you have given the agent the full details of who owns the property. The most likely type of tenancy agreement you will encounter is an Assured Short Hold Tenancy agreement (AST), which is largely governed by the 1988 Housing Act. Your agent should be able to answer your questions about the terms and conditions incorporated in the agreement.

Energy Performance Certificate: This gives an energy rating to your property and is a must before the property can be rented. A copy of this certificate must be provided to tenants free of charge prior to them moving in to the property. The good news is our Property Management Department can arrange this at a competitive rate and they are usually valid for 10 years.

Safety Legislation: There is an increasing amount of safety legislation that needs to be adhered to prior to renting your property:

Gas Safety Certificate: Under the Gas Safety Regulations 1998 if you let a property connected to a mains gas supply, you must arrange an annual maintenance check of gas pipe work, appliances and flues. This should be performed annually by an engineer registered with Gas Safe – formerly Corgi. At Pat Robson we can organise a Gas Safe Engineer who can provide this certificate at a competitive rate.

Electrical Installation Safety: The Electrical Equipment Safety Regulations 1994 require any electrical appliances left in a property to be safe. Again our Property Management Department can arrange a competitively priced Portable Appliance Test (PAT) or 5yr Electrical Certificate in order to comply with these regulations.

Fire Safety: All furniture provided must comply with the Furniture and Furnishings Regulations 1988. The regulations apply to a range of items, so to find out more information visit the government website detailed below.

Smoke Alarms: Since legislation in 2015 smoke alarms are now compulsory in rental properties and carbon monoxide detectors are also required in most.

For more information on any of these legal requirements why not ask us or visit:

http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/HomeAndCommunity/Privaterenting/index.htm