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Letting my property out - Newbie

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I am looking to let out a property that I part own and was wondering whether anyone had any do's and dont's.


There seems to be a lot of demand (based on information from agents and enquiries), however, I am very wary of the type of tenant I put in to the house. With it being the first time I have ever done this sort of thing I want some advice.


How do I know if the tenant is scrupulous (are there any checks I can carry out)?


Not involving an agent also means I have to fulfill all paperwork requirements and responsibilities. I understand that I have to:


Provide EPC

Protect their deposit

Write up tenancy agreement etc.

Create inventory


Are there any other things I've missed or any general advice from experience.


Sorry,  I understand that this is a very broad topic, but any advice would be much appreciated. Like I said, I'm very new to all of this.


Thank you

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Welcome aboard - you are at the point that many of us have already been - it is however quite a tall order to go it alone right at the start of your first rental property as there are a bucket of pitfalls that you could fall into from being so new and I would not want to see you get your fingers burnt from the outset.  Letting law is increasingly stringent and councils are placing private landlords (and agents) under increasing scrutiny and many are facing legal action for not knowing - remember, ignorance is not a legal defence in law!


I have attached a document that I am working on for my day job which will be included in our new landlord pack and have redacted out my company's name.  It is a bit slanted and I will be amending it for my mentoring pack for landlords such as you but this will give you more of an insight of what is involved - i hope this helps.  Please bear in mind that this is work in progress and is not quite the finished article.


This is a great place to ask questions - if you are asking them be sure that you are probably not alone and others will benefit from other members observations.  Scroll through some of the back listed threads as there is a gold mine of information to find on this site.


Welcome aboard

Landlord Letting Guide -anon.docx

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I use a letting agent because i don't want to have to do this! Then all you need to do is your homework once on the agent, what their criteria are, who they use for referencing.


There are legal obligations you have, and a good agent will ensure you comply with them all.


They should also have better abilities in dealing with any issues, and you won't be getting phone calls from a tenant at 3 am to demand a new light bulb, or to retrieve a burger from down the back of a cooker.


Im sure if you ask, plenty of people on here will recommend good agents in your area. Also, some to avoid!



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Thank you for taking some time out to give such detailed responses. Your help is much appreciated. 


I have decided to cut out the middle man and do it myself. I have had an estate agent check through my tenancy agreement to ensure I've covered all bases. With the property being full refurbished as well there shouldn't be too many maintenance issues (hopefully). 


Thanks once again! It is very much appreciated!! 

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Any advice on which company to use for tenant screening or the best way to do checks?


I have listed a few websites that I have come across that provide a tenant screening process, please advise and recommend the best method/company to use:






Thank you.

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If you are going alone from a standing start make sure that you you have covered all your bases as the legal side is becoming increasingly important and many councils are becoming increasingly aware of their responsibilities and leaning hard on landlords not obeying the many laws.  Dependant on where you have bought your property there could also be a requirement for obtaining a letting license and a requirement to comply with additional requirements and all with the threat of some fairly stringent fines (up to £20,000 in some places).

I would seriously suggest you look at joining the National Landlords Association (NLA) or the Residential Landlords Association (RLA) as they offer many advantages including free contracts (well included in membership fee), access to reasonably priced referencing and legal advice etc.

Unless you have someone to mentor you who you can trust to give you accurate and reasonable advice I would still recommend using a good quality agent who has properly trained staff etc.  It is also worth noting that if the General Election next year swings back towards Labour then there is every chance that compliance regulation would get considerably more stringent and DIY landlords will have to keep on their toes.  Not impossible by any means, but new landlords could have an uphill task keeping abreast of legislation - its bad enough for letting agents who do it full time!

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Imran hi,


I have just re-read your opening post and notice that you "part own" the property and I did not spot this the first time round.

To legally let it you have to have the agreement of all owners.  If the property has a mortgage on it you will also need the permission of the mortgage company unless you have a proper buy to let product.  If the property is leasehold you will also need to seek permission to let from the head leaseholder too.


If you do not have any or all of these in place do not let the property until you do as there are all sorts of legal nightmares that are likely to trip you up and could be very costly.  Mortgage providers are increasingly hot on illegal lets and foreclose on landlords more often.

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