Landlords Guide

HOW WE MARKET YOUR PROPERTY

Whether buying, selling or letting your property, our experience and in depth knowledge of the current market work hand in hand with our first class customer service to provide each and every client with a high quality comprehensive property service.

Features include:-

  • Internet advertising using ESPC, Right Move, Zoopla, S1 Homes;
  • Prominent branch display;
  • Database of prospective Tenants;
  • High quality internal and external photographs;
  • Highly recognised “To Let” board.

HOW WE FIND YOU THE RIGHT TENANT

At Morgans, our prominent advertising is designed to achieve as much interest in your property as possible. Once we have prospective tenants lined up, we carry out a full advanced reference check to ensure that the interested tenant is the right one for our Landlord.

LANDLORD ACCREDITATION (SCOTLAND)

Please note that Morgans are accredited through Landlord Accreditation (Scotland). This demonstrates that our management processes treat tenants fairly and that we ensure that repairs are carried out promptly. We have been awarded accredited status through confirmation that we meet the requirements of the Scottish core standards for Accredited Landlords. These standards can be downloaded from www.landlordaccreditationscotland.com.

OUR SERVICES

We have two levels of service available as detailed below.
We would be happy to discuss with you which would best suit your requirements.

FIND A TENANT ONLY SERVICE

  • Rent appraisal
  • Instructing Energy Performance Certificate
  • Marketing the property to the widest possible audience
  • Accompanied viewings if necessary
  • Reference check (additional cost to the Landlord for external check)
  • Preparation of Short Assured Tenancy and associated documents

FULLY MANAGED SERVICE

In addition, to all of the above we will:-

  • Prepare the Inventory and Schedule of Condition
  • Collect and lodge deposits with SafeDeposits Scotland
  • Collect the monthly rent and chase late payment of rent
  • Arrange all safety checks as detailed in our safety checks section
  • Carry out periodic inspections (every 3 months)
  • Deal with the transfer of utilities and council tax
  • Carry out the final inspection at end of tenancy and deal with issues arising prior to return of deposit

GUIDELINES FOR LANDLORDS

Here’s some useful information to give you a clearer understanding of the procedures and legislation that should be taken into consideration when letting residential property.

LANDLORD REGISTRATION

All Landlords in Scotland are required by law to be registered with the Local authority where they let property. The Local authority must be satisfied that they are fit and proper persons to let residential property. This requirement is designed to help Local authorities remove disreputable Landlords from the market, protect tenants, and protect communities from the impact of anti-social behaviour and mis-managed property.

Further information on Landlord registration is available from www.landlordregistrationscotland.gov.uk. Please note we will require your Landlord registration number prior to listing your property for let.

PREPARING THE PROPERTY

To achieve a higher rental figure and promote a better relationship between Landlord and tenant, we would strongly recommend that each property is well presented, maintained and in good decorative order. Properties that are well presented with neutral decoration prove more attractive to prospective tenants. The property should be thoroughly cleaned and this presents a good example of the standard that tenants will be expected to maintain.

ENERGY PERFORMANCE CERTIFICATE

An Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) has to be produced for all dwellings which are sold or rented to a new tenant from 4th January, 2009. An EPC is a document which states the energy efficiency of a building based on the standardised way the building is used. Carbon Dioxide (CO2) ratings are shown in bandings from a to g with a being the least polluting. The Certificate allows prospective owners and tenants to compare the performance with other dwellings. The Certificate must be fixed to the dwelling and will be valid for a period of ten years. The Energy Performance Certificate requires to be obtained prior to advertising your property for let.

THE TYPE OF TENANCY

The tenancy agreement prepared by us is known as a short assured tenancy. We ensure that the relevant documentation is served on the tenant to create the short assured tenancy. Short assured tenancies are for a minimum period of six months. The term of the tenancy is fixed for both the tenant and the Landlord and a Landlord cannot give notice to quit earlier than the end date stated on the Lease.

DEPOSIT

A deposit, which is usually the equivalent to one month’s rent is paid by the tenant at entry, together with the first month’s rent. The deposit must be lodged with one of the operators of the Tenancy Deposit Scheme (Scotland).

The tenancy agreement sets out the basis for deductions from the deposit e.g. damage to the property or unpaid rent. Receipts require to be provided to the tenants for any deductions and their deposit should be repaid within twenty eight days following the termination of the Lease.

INVENTORY

We will provide the tenant with a detailed inventory detailing the condition of the property on a room by room basis, details of any faults, flaws, damage etc. will be noted on this inventory. It will include reference to the cleanliness of the property and the meter readings for utilities and will be used to assess the condition of the property when the tenant moves out. We take photographs wherever possible.

UTILITIES AND COUNCIL TAX

Prior to commencement of the tenancy, the utility meters are read and the readings confirmed to the relevant utility providers, together with details of the new tenant and commencement date. The Local authority is also informed in writing. The telephone connection is the responsibility of the tenant. We recommend that the Landlord ensures they have advised their telephone supplier of a new tenancy. The tenants are responsible for payment of the utility bills.

INSURANCE

As a Landlord, you require to make provision for buildings and contents insurance, together with third party liability insurance. You should advise your insurance company in order that they can ensure that the correct insurance package is in place. We would recommend that you check thoroughly any exclusions to your policy.

TAXATION AND MORTGAGES

Rental income requires to be declared as unearned income as part of your tax return and you should speak to your accountant if you have any queries in this respect. If you are resident abroad, you should apply to your local tax office to join the non resident landlord scheme. You must obtain an exemption Certificate from the Inland Revenue by completing and returning the form nrL1. In the event that this is not provided to us, as your managing agents, we require to deduct the tax from the rental income received prior to forwarding this to you. If you have a mortgage over your property which is not specifically a buy to let mortgage then you require to obtain your lender’s permission first.

SAFETY GUIDELINES FOR LANDLORDS

1. Gas Safety: Landlords are required by law to ensure that where there is a gas supply to the property an annual gas safety check is carried out on each gas appliance/flue by a gas safe registered installer. Checks need to have taken place within one year of the start of the tenancy, unless the appliances have been installed for less than twelve months in which case they should be checked within twelve months of their installation date. A copy of the gas safety Certificate requires to be provided to the tenant.

2. Electrical Safety: Landlords require to arrange for a qualified electrician to complete an annual portable electrical appliance test (pat testing) for electrical appliances provided by them.  A five year check of electrical wiring circuits and mains board, known as a periodic inspection report (pir) is also recommended.

3. Furniture and Fittings: Landlords supplying furniture and furnishings within a property, have a duty to ensure that they comply with Fire safety regulations. Furniture must meet fire resistance requirements and have the required labels attached or the relevant documentation to prove that they meet these regulations. Since 1993 it has been illegal to put any furniture into a property which does not meet these regulations.

4. Smoke Alarms: the Housing (Scotland) act 2006 provides that a Landlord must ensure that there is satisfactory provision for detecting and giving warning of fires. There must be at least one working smoke alarm on each floor of the property and these smoke alarms must be mains wired.

5. Carbon Monoxide Alarms: Landlords must also ensure that these are fitted in the property.

THE REPAIRING STANDARD

Landlords in the private sector have a duty to ensure that rented accommodation meets a basic standard of repair called the “Repairing Standard”. Landlords must make Tenants aware of the repairing standard at the start of the Lease.

Rented property meets the repairing standard if:-

  • It is wind and water tight and in all other respects reasonably fit for human habitation;
  • The structure and exterior of the property, including drains, gutters and external pipes are in a reasonable state of repair and in proper working order;
  • The installations in the property have a supply of water, gas and electricity and for sanitation, heating and heating water are in a reasonable state of repair and in proper working order;
  • Any fixtures, fittings and appliances provided by the Landlord under the tenancy are in a reasonable state of repair and in proper working order;
  • Any furnishings provided by the Landlord under the tenancy are capable of being used safely for the purpose for which they are designed;
  • The property has satisfactory provision for detecting fires and for giving warning in the event of fire or suspected fire.

In the event that a rented property does not meet that standard, and the Landlord refuses to carry out the necessary repairs, a tenant can apply to the private rented Housing panel (prHp) for a decision to be made as to whether or not the Landlord has failed to comply with the duty. prHp can then order the Landlord to carry out the necessary repairs. There are various penalties that apply, including the withholding of rent if the Landlord does not do so.

FURTHER INFORMATION

For further information about our letting services for landlords please either call us on 01383 620222, or alternatively please complete the short form below and a member of our Lettings Department team will get back to you shortly…

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