FAQs for Landlords
Should I tell my mortgage lender if I intend to let my property?
- Absolutely. If you don’t already have a buy-to-let mortgage, your lender will need to know if you move out of your home and decide to let it out. They may alter your conditions slightly and will need to provide you with “consent to let”. Not informing your lender will be a breach of your contract and may have significant consequences.
How do I calculate what rent to ask?
- The easiest way to be confident in your marketing price is to ask one of our experienced agents to value your property and give you a recommendation based on the current market conditions and comparable properties. Our valuations are completely FREE so just make an appointment with one of our team today.
Is it best to manage the letting myself or use an agent?
- While some landlords choose to manage their rental properties themselves, this is not always convenient or practical, particularly if they live abroad or outside London and many choose to hand over the responsibility of management to their letting agent. We are able to keep all your compliance certification up to date, regularly inspect the property and most importantly deal with all necessary faults and repairs in a timely, cost-effective manner ensuring that your property is maintained and your tenants are kept happy.
What do I do with a tenant’s deposit?
- The Tenancy Deposit Scheme was introduced in April 2007 which requires landlords to register most tenants’ deposits with a government approved scheme. Mountgrange Heritage are members of the Dispute Service Limited and automatically register deposits held against all Assured Shorthold Tenancies.
What happens if the tenant damages the property?
- Landlords must have buildings insurance but it is entirely their decision whether or not they chose contents insurance which can be costly if they are renting their property to tenants. So, we advise all tenants to insure their own possessions on their own contents insurance policy for the life of the tenancy. Under the TDS guidelines all landlords must have a professionally prepared inventory and so if accidental damage occurs then we suggest the tenant either covers the cost of repairs themselves or the value is deducted from their deposit at the end of the tenancy. Allowances will still be made for fair wear and tear.
Do I need an inventory?
- Yes, as above, it is now essential that a professionally prepared Inventory is prepared for your property whether it is furnished or not. Without this you will be unable to claim anything from your tenants’ deposit should a claim be referred to the TDS for arbitration. The inventory is a very detailed document which records not only the freestanding items of furniture but more importantly the fixtures, fittings and floor coverings which in real terms are much more valuable.
What is an EPC for?
- An EPC, or Energy Performance Certificate, states the energy efficiency of a property, providing a standardised rating so tenants can compare running costs between prospective homes. It’s mandatory for homeowners to purchase an EPC before putting their property on the market to let or sell.
Can I enter the property during a tenancy?
- Yes; however, you will need to give your tenants suitable notice before doing so, usually 24 to 48 hours as the tenants’ ‘quiet enjoyment’ of the property must be respected. This access should not cause undue disruption to your tenants, but routine visits, usually on a 3 monthly basis, by either the landlord or their agent are not uncommon.
Who pays the council tax and TV licence?
- Tenants are usually responsible for council tax, unless a landlord decides to include this in the rent. To save any confusion over liability, we recommend clearly stating your chosen arrangement in the tenancy agreement. If there is no tenant in place, council tax reverts to being the landlord’s responsibility. TV licenses are the liability of tenants. The exception is when a property is rented on a short let where all bills and the cost of the TV license, satellite TV and Wi-Fi is almost always included in the rent. Find out more information for landlords here.