Stepping into the world of property renting for the first time can be an exciting yet slightly intimidating endeavour. As a new landlord in the bustling city of London, you aren’t just providing a space to tenants, you’re offering a home. This comes with a raft of responsibilities, from ensuring your property is safe and comfortable, to understanding your legal obligations. We’ve got a guide that aims to shed light on key considerations you need to bear in mind, helping you to navigate this journey confidently.
Understand Your Legal Obligations
Welcome to the complicated world of landlord legalities. While it may seem overwhelming to begin with, we promise some research and careful planning will make it easier to navigate these waters. Firstly, landlord licensing is a must in many London boroughs, and making sure you’re compliant should be your initial step. After this, you must be equipped to carry out ‘right to rent’ checks. This ensures your tenants have legal immigration status in the UK.
What’s more, there are important schemes like the TDP (tenancy deposit protection) that demand your attention. This mandates you to secure any deposits received within a government-approved scheme. Lastly, don’t forget to obtain an EPC (energy performance certificate) before you let your property. It’s not just good practice, it’s a legal necessity. Embracing these obligations will keep you on the right side of the law and build a strong foundation for your landlord journey.
Concentrate On Safety
When it comes to the safety of your tenants, there’s no room for compromise. The saying ‘safety first!’ couldn’t ring truer in the rental sector. Key to this is securing an EICR (electrical installation condition report). This is a thorough check of the electrical systems in your property. Hexo Electrical Testing can guide you on how to get an EICR in London. They offer their services across the capital, as well as emergency lighting testing.
Beyond electrical safety, you must ensure your property has an annual gas safety check carried out by a registered professional. Pair this with the installation of carbon monoxide detectors near any gas appliances. Doing this will show you’ve taken significant steps in ensuring your property’s safety. Finally, make sure there are smoke alarms fitted around your property, and make sure any furnishings you offer meet fire safety standards.
Build a Fair and Comprehensive Tenancy Agreement
Your tenancy agreement is the binding contract between you and your tenant. It’s where expectations are set, and rights and responsibilities are defined. But creating a fair tenancy agreement goes beyond just jotting down rules and regulations. It’s about striking a balance of interests and keeping the relationship between landlord and tenant harmonious.
Start by detailing fundamental elements like the agreed rent amount, deposit, rental period, and notice periods. Rules regarding smoking, pets, and property alterations must be clear to avoid any potential disputes. Make sure you’re transparent about repair and maintenance responsibilities too as no one wants a broken boiler in the midst of water with no idea who is to blame!
Embarking on your journey as a first-time landlord may initially seem overwhelming, especially when trying to make your way in the hustle and bustle of the capital. However, knowledge is power, so reading our advice above should help you feel more prepared and ready for what awaits.