Landlords Useful Information

Landlord Useful Information

Frequently Asked Questions
Why do I need a letting agent?

They can save you a great deal of time, money and stress.

Finding the right Tenant for your property could take a long time if you wait for responses from private adverts or rely on word of mouth locally and these methods tend to attract the worst sort of Tenants who are trying to bypass referencing checks.

We have access to an enormous pool of quality Tenants via huge internet exposure.

Because we vet Tenants so thoroughly, we have fewer problems with rent arrears and other such issues which makes our Letting Fee money well spent. We can also guide you through the maze of regulations which changes constantly to help keep you safe from prosecution.

What services do you offer?

We provide a “Letting Service” or a “Letting and Management Service” The Letting Service is geared towards experienced Landlords whose day-to-day business is the management of their portfolio.

The majority of our clients choose the Fully Managed option as this provides a complete service from start to finish, offering you peace of mind and the satisfaction that your property is in capable hands, as well as being completely Tax deductible.

Can I manage my property myself?

You certainly can, however many Landlords under-estimate the amount of time and skill that is required to manage a property and Tenant well.

From as little as 7% of your monthly rental*, we can handle virtually every aspect and provide a useful buffer between you and your Tenant. You still make all the decisions but we do all the work for you.

*minimum management fees apply – contact us for details.

How is the rent paid?

Typically a standing order is set up from the Tenant’s bank account and the rent will be paid in advance. Once the monies have come into our client account, the rent is paid by BACS directly into the account of your choice. A detailed monthly statement is part of our service.

What sort of agreement is used?

An Assured Shorthold Tenancy for a fixed period of at least 6 months, or 12 months for Students.

What happens if the tenant doesn't pay the rent?

As part of our service we endeavour to ensure that the rent is paid on time. Having carefully selected the tenant in the first place, there’s unlikely to be a problem.

However people’s circumstances do sometimes change during a tenancy and if the rent is not paid, we’ll advise you on the appropriate course of action. You can insure yourself against loss of rent and legal expenses.

What about a deposit?

We ask tenants for a cash deposit equal to 1 month’s rent.

A cash deposit is Secured in a Deposit Protection Scheme and returned when the tenant has given vacant possession of the property and left it in a satisfactory condition, allowing for wear and tear, and complied with his or her responsibilities under the Tenancy Agreement.

What are my outgoings?

These will usually include:

  • Mortgage
  • Insurance- Buildings & Contents (as a minimum)
  • Repairs to the property and contents – unless caused by the tenants
  • If leasehold – ground rent and service charges
  • Managing agents fees
  • When the property is empty, utilities and services
What about tax?

You will be liable to pay tax on any profit generated from letting your property- the amount of tax you pay will depend on your circumstances.

If you are overseas for more than six months in any tax year, you will be regarded as a non-resident Landlord. The current legislation requires us to deduct and pay over to the Revenue tax at the basic rate unless we are in receipt of an exemption letter from the Inland Revenue. Once we are notified by the Revenue that you are exempt, we will no longer need to deduct tax.

Do I need to tell my insurance company?

Yes, otherwise you may find your insurance is invalid. Your insurer may wish to increase the premiums or be unable to accommodate your wishes. Should you need it, we are able to offer alternative Buildings and Contents insurance cover.

What do I do if my property is leasehold?

The managing agents or freeholders must be advised as a change in the type of occupancy may affect the buildings insurance. You should obtain the freeholders or managing agents consent prior to letting and advise us of any restrictions within the head lease which your tenant should be aware of.

Who looks after the garden?

The maintenance and upkeep of the garden is usually the responsibility of the Tenant. However, should you have a particularly large garden or any precious plants then it may be advisable to arrange for a gardener- the cost of which should be incorporated in the rental value. It is advisable to provide the materials for maintaining your garden even if the property is unfurnished.

Do I have to provide furniture?

Not always, however it sometimes helps to give tenants the option. Interestingly enough, in most cases we have found that there is very little difference in rental values between furnished and unfurnished lettings. Aston Woolf will advise you on the most appropriate option for your property. An unfurnished property would require carpets, curtains and usually white goods. The requirements for a furnished property can vary depending upon the style and location of your property.

Are Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarms required?

Smoke alarms have to be installed in any new building, conversion and rental property. The legislation requires at least one smoke alarm per floor of your property. We strongly recommend fitting a Carbon Monoxide Alarm near every fuel burning appliance.

What am I responsible for repairing?

As a Landlord you have a legal obligation under the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985 to maintain the structure of the building, the sanitation and the supply of services. In addition, should an item in the property require replacing or repairing through fair wear and tear then you would be expected within the terms of the Tenancy Agreement to deal with this.

Do I need to tell my mortgage company that I'm letting my property?

Yes, you’ll normally find that there is a clause in your mortgage agreement which makes this a requirement but it is rare nowadays for your Lender to object to your request.

What about all the various safety regulations that I hear about?

We will keep you advised of any current or future legislation that affects your property and guide you through it.

What about Safety Regulations?

The Furniture and Furnishings Fire Safety Regulations 1988
All upholstered furniture made after 1950 is included within these Regulations. The furniture covered by the Regulations includes sofas, settees, seat pads, beds, head boards, pillows, arm chairs, scatter cushions, futons, mattresses and bean bags, but not curtains, carpets, bedclothes (including duvets) and mattress covers.

To comply with the Regulations these types of furniture must be fire resistant and in most cases carry a permanent label to this effect. To be ‘Fire Resistant’ most furniture and upholstery must have passed an ‘ignitability test’ specified in the Regulations.

You must remove any furniture which does not comply with these Regulations before the tenancy begins. Any replacement furniture you place in the property must comply with the Regulations.

There are heavy penalties imposed by these regulations on landlords who do not comply with them. The penalties for non-compliance include a maximum of six months imprisonment and/or up to a £5000 fine. You can obtain further guidance on these regulations from your local Trading Standards office.

The Gas Safety Regulations 1994
These regulations came into effect on the 31st October 1994 to ensure that gas appliances are properly installed and maintained in a safe condition so as to avoid the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.

It is the responsibility of the landlords of domestic properties that ALL ‘Gas Appliances’ and Gas Installation Pipe work owned by him are checked for safety at least once a year by a ‘Gas Safe’ registered plumber, and that accurate records are kept of those safety inspections and any work carried out. These records must be provided to the tenant on the day they move in. It is recommended to have a safety check carried out at the start of each new tenancy.

‘Gas Appliances’ – includes any fitted gas appliance, for example the Central heating system, Gas heaters, Gas fires and Gas cookers. ‘Gas Installation Pipe work’ – includes gas pipe work, valves, regulators and meters. Faulty equipment can lead to death and a conviction of unlawful killing on a landlord.

Under the Regulations any appliance that does not conform to the regulations can be disconnected. Failure to comply with these regulations may jeopardize the life of your tenant and lead to prosecution with penalties of imprisonment or fines up to £5000.

The Electrical Equipment Safety Regulations 1994
The above regulations impose an obligation on the Landlord to ensure that all electrical appliances and installations left as part of a let property are safe. There are particular requirements for houses in multiple occupancy (HMO’s).

We recommend that all electrical appliances in let properties are regularly checked and serviced. Failure to comply with these regulations may jeopardise the life of your tenant and lead to prosecution with penalties of imprisonment or fines up to £5000. As part of our service we can arrange gas and electrical safety inspections if requested.

Landlords Fees

Check Out Our Regular Landlord Offers

Our fee – Always, No Tenant, No Fee

    Set Up Fee £295.00 plus 7% of Monthly Rental Income*
    Contact us
  • Rent Collect Service
    5% of Monthly Rental Income
  • Tailor made Services
    (as much or as little as you wish) – contact us for details
Exchange of Contracts

*minimum management fees apply – contact us for details.

Other Services

  • We have a list of extra services we can carry out to make being a landlord as stress-free as possible.
  • Arrange and Manage your EPC Certificates (£79)
  • Arrange and Manage Gas Certificates (£79)
  • Managing and Depositing Tenant Deposits – £25 Let Only Service
  • Obtain quotes and estimates for small works – Fee On Application – case by case
  • Manage major Maintenance works, supervise and sign off – Fee On Application – case by case
  • Tax return administration- Fee On Application – case by case
  • Key Cutting – £15.00 per key
  • Issue Possession Notices – Fee On Application – case by case
  • Deposit Protection Scheme – Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)
Landlords FAQ
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