Letting Your Property
What makes a good letting agent?
Jonathan Waters Estate Agents offer a specialist property letting and management service for owners wanting an income from their property without the need for any day-to-day involvement.
With over 320 years combined estate agency experience and we have built our reputation over twenty years and have individually selected our dedicated lettings team specifically for their knowledge and experience in this specialist field. We can offer free, expert
advice on the advantages and disadvantages of all aspects of property letting and as members of the Ombudsman for Estate Agents our values ensure that we are professional, honest and accountable so the individually tailored service we give you is presented with the utmost integrity.
For whatever reason you have decided to rent your property, we will take the hassle away - giving you absolute peace of mind from day one.
At Jonathan Waters Estate Agents we know how important it is for you to get the most from your property and that you need to know that we are looking after your interests throughout your tenancy period and beyond.
Of course we know the importance for landlords to keep their costs to a minimum, however, we all know in this market, you get what you pay for. Reputation, professionalism and overall quality of service are also important to invest in - after all your property may be let for years to come so by choosing Jonathan Waters Estate Agents you can be sure of our commitment for years to come.
Preparing your property to be let
Prior to Marketing
• Terms of Business
• One set of keys
• Property presented to a good standard and clean order
Prior to Tenancy Commencing
• Completed Landlord and Property Details, with your bank details and forwarding address (rent cannot be paid until this is received)
• Signed Tenancy Agreement
• Signed Inventory
• Gas Certificate
• Two additional sets of keys
• Property clean
• Energy Performance Certificate
• Confirmation of utility companies
Consent to Let
It is essential that you notify your insurance company so they may advise you of any additional cover that is required. Failure to do so may result in your policy being void.
If your property is leasehold you may well require permission from the Freeholder. In order to establish this information check the title deeds and original head lease. If in doubt contact the managing agent.
If the property is subject to a mortgage you must obtain consent from your mortgagee in order to have their consent to the letting.
We appreciate that letting your property is a responsibiity not to be taken lightly. Our aim is to offer guidance throughout the process and to maximise the prospect of letting your property in a competitive market to a trouble free tenant, therefore minimising the risk. Let Jonathan Waters Estate Agents give you a hassle free rental.
Prior to letting your property you must ensure that the premises are fit to be let and appliances should comply with the safety regulations. We can help you with all this.
In addition, all gas appliances and electrical goods should be in full working order, should have been recently serviced, checked for safety and have clear instructions for use.
It is recommended that sensible precautions are taken during any vacant periods, .e.g. leave heating on low or drain the water system, especially during winter months.
Presentation and Decorative Order
It is best that your property is viewed by potential tenants in good, clean decorative order, both inside and outside. Not only will this speed up the process of findinga good tenant but will help to achieve the top market rental. Most importantly, it will encourage the tenant to maintain the standards you yourself have set.
Furnished properties do not necessarily achieve a higher rent and may even limit interest in some cases. We are happy to market your property on an unfurnished, part furnished or fully furnished basis. We do, however, recommend you remain flexible to accommodate individual tenants needs.
Again there is legislation in place to protect you as a landlord and your tenants safety with regards to all furnishings which must comply with The Furniture and Furnishings (Fire Safety) Regulations 1988 and The Furniture and Furnishings (Fire Safety) (amendment) Regulations 1993.
We have outlined the regulations in more detail below, however, Jonathan Waters Estate Agents will be there to guide you every step of the way.
Assured Shorthold Tenancies
Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreements are available for a minimum of six months to a maximum of three years and are renewable. The normal initial term is between six and twelve months. Subject the to the terms of the agreement, the property remains the responsibility of the landlord throughout the tenancy period, including the structure and exterior of the property, the proper maintenance of water supplies and drains.
Suitable insurance must also be in place by you as the landlord regarding your own contents, as detailed in the inventory and Schedule of Condition, and buildings insurance along with other insurances as deemed necessary by the mortgage provider.
Properties suitable for rental will be self-contained, offer kitchen and bathroom facilities with mains connection and meet with required safety standards.
We offer a free inspection and rental assessment. The rental charge on a property is usually exclusive of utilities such as gas, electricity, telephone, water and council tax. Under the fixed term Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement, the rent remains static. At the expiry of the agreement the rent may be reviewed to reflect inflation and current values and should be considered at least two months prior to the expiry date of the contract for the correct negotiations to be entered into, again as your property partner we would be happy to negotiate a fair increase on your behalf.
If you have a mortgage on the property
You will need to obtain your mortgagees written consent to let the property out.
Where the premises are subject to a mortgage you will need to satisfy yourself that you have your mortgagees consent to the proposed letting as soon as possible.
The mortgagee may request to see a copy of the draft Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement which can be supplied on request.
Your mortgagee may charge you a fee for giving you their permission.
If the property you are renting out is leasehold, you will require the consent from your superior landlord, freeholder or their managing agent before you can sub-let the premises to a tenant. A superior landlord is the person for the time being who owns the interest in the Premises which gives him the right to possession of the Premises at the end of the Landlord's lease of the Premises. Your freeholder is the person who owns the rights of the property upon expiry of the lease of the landlord, and can be subject to a Superior Landlord. The managing agent is the appointed person to manage the freehold on behalf of the landlord.
In giving consent, your superior landlord or their managing agent may require you to provide copies of references for your tenant and, in some cases, yourself. Your tenant will need to enter into an agreement to observe the covenants contained in your head lease as you would if you were living in the property yourself.
Some superior landlords, freeholders or managing agents may charge you a fee for this.
It remains your responsibility to maintain your insurances on the rental property.
It is essential that the premises retain a buildings insurance and that your insurers are aware that the property is being let out - with all insurances failure to do so may result in your insurance being invalid.
It is also important to ensure that all contents as detailed in your Schedule of Condition (Inventory) are insured adequately and again your insurers are aware that the property is being rented.
Best practice also requires that there is a third party element to your insurances to cover your public liability protection if a visitor to the property or your tenant raises a personal injury claim at any time. At Jonathan Waters Estate Agents we are able to help you with all insurances you may need.
Tax and Overseas Landords
You will be liable for tax on rental income and you must inform the Inland Revenue you are letting your property. There are a number of allowances you can claim against this rental income, including our fees.
The Inland Revenue has specific rules on collection of such tax if you are resident overseas. You must obtain a tax approval number from the Inland Revenue and until that number is supplied to us by the Inland Revenue we are obliged to retain the tax element from your income at the prevailing rate. This money is then forwarded directly to the Inland Revenue by us. Please visit www.hmrc.gov.uk for full details of letting your property and the tax regulations.
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