Published: 11/07/2022Letting a property can be a minefield for both landlord and tenant. The landlord has a raft of legislative responsibilities to fulfil and the tenant may be unsure about their rights and obligations. Both parties may have their own very different concerns so it’s important to build and maintain a good relationship from the start. Below are a few tips for doing just that.
Provide a comprehensive tenancy agreement. Make sure the language used in the agreement is clear and transparent, setting out legal requirements and any additional expectations or obligations. The document should tell the tenant what is expected of them, from the basics such as rent and tenancy term, right through to anything else such as parking arrangements or whether pets are permitted.
Don’t make false promises. As a landlord, make sure you fully disclose everything at the beginning, ideally during the very first viewing if not before, whether this be about the property or any lease conditions you may wish to impose.
Respect the privacy of your tenants. Be aware that, although you own the premises, it is your tenants’ home and they have a right to quiet enjoyment. When scheduling a visit to the property make sure you obtain consent from your tenants and be mindful of their position and try to plan accordingly – do they work from home, do they do shift work? Fitting a visit around their specific circumstances sets the tone for a mutually respectful relationship.
Maintain the property well. Your tenant expects all available facilities to be in working order. Make sure you set aside funds for maintenance and for any unexpected issues. Any reported repairs that are the responsibility of the landlord should be dealt with in a timely manner. Keep your tenant informed if there are any unforeseen delays with any planned works and be responsive when your tenant makes contact.
In addition to the points above, a landlord will also need to ensure compliance with statutory requirements such as the provision of an annual gas safety certificate, an EICR (electrical compliance) and much more. Be aware that failure to provide the required documents can lead to problems down the line, such as being unable to serve a valid Section 21 Notice, substantial fines and even prosecution. If you’d like any further advice or would like to discuss Gray & Toynbee taking on the management of your property please do not hesitate to call us on 01223 439888.