How to be a landlord – a landlord’s checklist for letting a property.
Welcome, we hope you enjoy our ‘checklist for landlords’, where we will cover the majority of stages you’ll go through when letting a property for the first time.
Below is a brief summary of a landlords checklist that will help you understand how to be a landlord and successfully manage your property.
This checklist should answer many general questions about how to be a landlord. However, if you have any doubts regarding the legality of letting a property privately, you must seek legal advice from a suitably qualified professional, such as a solicitor.
The information contained within this document is not legal advice: it is a point of reference and general guide. Landlords should also know that resources like this guide are here to support you and prepare you for the first of many steps to becoming an experienced and profitable landlord.
Consent to let a property
Before letting a property, landlords may want to cross off a shortlist of contacts that may or may not influence your next steps to become a landlord. These could include any adult or organisation who may either have occupancy rights or some title to the property. Typically, if you have a mortgage on the property and it is not a Buy-to-let product, you may require a ‘Consent to Let’ from the lender.
Why do you need a property inventory?
Preparing a property to rent
First impressions count, if a tenant walks into the property and it is clean, smells fresh and its’ the size and location they are looking for they have already shortlisted your property as a potential…
Energy Performance Certificate
An Energy Performance Certificate or otherwise known as an EPC is essentially a certificate issued to the Landlord after a qualified energy assessment of the property has been completed…
Furnished or unfurnished?
It will all depend on the type of tenant/tenancy you are looking for or Tenant you want to engage with i.e. students, professionals, sharers, long-term tenants or short-term tenants and your access to storage…
Marketing your property to let
Present as much information as you can on the biggest UK property websites in a clear and concise manner. This will amplify your chances of finding your next tenant. Photos, description and price are key to any tenant…
Conducting rental viewings
Landlords should make sure the property is at its best shape before arranging a viewing. It is important to be at the property on time and ready to meet the tenants.
You prospective tenants will probably ask you certain questions i.e
- who are the neighbours are?
- what kind of a heating system does the property have?
- are pets allowed in the property?
These are just some of the questions a landlord would be facing.
When deciding whether or not to accept someone as a tenant, a Landlord should do as a minimum precaution these 3 references:
- an Employment reference,
- a Landlord Reference (where applicable)
- and a Credit Check reference
These will help you ensure that they owe no money, they have paid the rent to a previous landlord and they have a job to cover ongoing rental payments…
Most new tenancies created are as an Assured Shorthold but knowing which one and the implications of each is important. If you have never written one before and need to be sure it covers everything, get some help first time around…
One of the UK government approved schemes must protect tenants’ deposits from the beginning of a tenancy. Then, you’ll have to, where applicable, return them at the end…
Most landlords require their tenants to pay the first months’ rent upfront with the deposit. These funds must be cleared before the tenant takes possession of the property i.e. you hand over the keys…
Moving the tenant in
Having a fully completed, Property Inventory and Schedule of Condition is probably as equally important as the Tenancy itself. Without it, the Landlord will have very little to no chance of claiming from the deposit for any non-rent payment or property damage…
Gas safety regulations
Gas Safety Regulations place a statutory duty on all landlords of residential property to ensure that all gas appliances, pipework and flues are maintained in a safe condition…
Landlords need to ensure that every electrical appliance supplied must be safe to use and the electrical installation in the house is completely safe.
Landlord buildings and contents insurance
Landlords may not always have the right type of insurance for a tenanted property and in most cases, they would not be covered by the insurers…
Utilities – gas / electric / water / council tax
It is recommended to inform new tenants that it is their responsibility to register with the appropriate services. In fact, until they do it, you may be receiving a few extra bills at the end of the month.
Managing your rental property and tenant
Two useful tips when letting a property:
- in an area of high supply and low demand, consider letting the property slightly under market value.
- The second tip is to always respond to your tenants’ needs in a courteous and timely fashion…
Most landlords would make arrangements to visit the property during the tenancy. This will help you ensure that both tenants and landlords are happy because they are looking after your property.
Ending the tenancy agreement
Under the Housing Act 1988, a landlord who has granted an Assured Shorthold tenancy has a legal right to get his property back at the end of the tenancy. In order to invoke this right, they must follow the correct legal procedure which includes servicing a notice to his or her tenant.
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