What are my legal responsibilities as a Landlord?

Tue 31 Jan 2017

If you are considering becoming a Landlord we’ve put together an ‘Introduction to your Legal Obligations’. It may seem complicated but here at John German we will guide and advise you throughout the whole process.

Energy Performance Certificate – Landlords

From 1st October 2008 all rental properties require an EPC which is valid for 10 years. The EPC must be in place before marketing; if you already have one we can easily download it from the EPC Register and if you don’t we can also make arrangements to have one carried out for you.

Please note: As of April 2018 rental properties will need a minimum energy rating of E.

Landlord Safety Obligations

Gas Safety Certificate – All gas appliances must have a yearly safety test and the certificate issued to the tenant at the point of occupation. Only a Gas Safe registered engineer can do these inspections and repairs.

Electrical Certificate & Portable Appliance Testing (PAT) – We recommend supplying your tenant with an Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR) prior to check-in, these last for 5 years. A PAT test is also recommended and these last for 2 years.

Furniture and Fire Safety

•There must be access to an escape route at all times

•Any furniture being left in a property must comply with regulations and require a fire label

•Smoke detectors must be fitted to every habitable floor (excluding attics)

•Carbon monoxide detectors must be fitted where there is an open fire or multi-fuel stove

Child Safety Law – Any blinds or curtain cords must now have ‘breakaway’ connectors or safety chains which are tied out of the way at a minimum height of 90cms.

Legionella Risk Assessment – We can provide you with full details on how to minimise the risks of Legionella. This is required by law, but doesn’t have to be produced by a qualified assessor if you feel competent enough to complete this yourself.

Tenancy Deposit Schemes

By law every deposit must be registered with a tenancy deposit scheme. Here at John German we use The Dispute Service (for a small fee) providing our Landlords with extra peace of mind. You can contact Tracey Glenn (Lettings Director) or Rachel Johnson (Lettings Manager) who can provide you with more in-depth detail about this service.

Mortgage Company / Leasehold Properties 

It may be a requirement of your Mortgage or your Lease that you request permission to let your property. We would require a copy of the lease for any leasehold properties.

Do I need Landlords Insurance?

As a landlord you must take out specialist Landlords Buildings & Contents Insurance, usual Domestic Insurance will not be sufficient. At John German we also insist on our tenants taking out Tenant Liability Cover for your peace of mind.

Tax and Overseas Landlords

All Landlords need to declare their rental income, expenditure and profit via HMRC whether they are resident in the UK or not. We can provide you with more information and a link to the HMRC website to help you get tax approval.

Deregulation Act 2015

It is a requirement by law that all repairs are reported to the landlord in writing. Tenants and Landlords on our fully managed service will have access to our ‘My Property File’ portal where tenants can report and track repairs and landlords can view all their documents and keep up to date.

We pride ourselves in providing the best possible service to our clients; if you’re thinking of letting a property why not take a look at our ‘Choosing a letting agent – Landlords Guide’ or contact one of our lettings team in a branch closest to you to see how we can help.

"Many thanks to all the staff at Lichfield for their help in my purchase of 25 Falkland Road, I found you all extremely professional, friendly and helpful. I would not hesitate to recommend your services to my friends."
Mr Lewis - Happy Client

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