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The property should be professionally cleaned throughout, including all carpets, upholstery, curtains and windows. It creates a benchmark which will be recorded in the Inventory and will allow us to maintain the same standard throughout subsequent tenancies.
The gardens should be left in good order as tenants will be responsible for their subsequent maintenance and upkeep. We suggest that tenants are provided with relevant tools to make it easier for them to maintain the garden. Some landlords provide a gardening service, particularly if the garden is complicated to maintain.
We will arrange the transfer of utilities into tenants’ names if the property is managed by us. We will take meter readings when tenants move out as well as when they move in. The landlords have to make sure they clear all bills with the suppliers and the local council. The landlords are responsible for utilities and council tax bills for any period the property is vacant. A working telephone line should be provided so the tenant can easily connect their own service as soon as they move in.
One set of keys per tenant should be provided as minimum and one extra set to be retained at our office in case of emergency.
Where the property is subject to a mortgage the landlord may need to seek permission from the lender. If the property is leasehold the freeholder may also have to be contacted to give their permission to sublet.
It is essential that the property and its contents are adequately insured while the property is both let or vacant. Your insurer must be aware of the fact that the property is let as failure to do so might invalidate your cover.
Under the Furniture and Furnishings Fire Safety Regulations 1988a landlord who is letting a property in the course of business is responsible for seeing that the furniture carries the appropriate fire resistance labels. Bedding, carpets and curtains and furniture manufactured before 1950 falls outside the regulations.
From 2015, landlords will be required by law to install working smoke and carbon monoxide alarms in their properties. Smoke alarms must be placed at least on each floor of your property and have to be tested at the beginning of each tenancy. Landlords must also install carbon monoxide alarms which comply with the British Standard BS7860 in high risk rooms such as those where a solid fuel system is installed.
The Gas Safety Regulations 1998 require that any gas appliances in the property are inspected before tenants move in and annually thereafter. The inspection must be carried out by a gas engineer who is certified by the Gas Safe Register. Failure to comply with the Safety Regulations may constitute a criminal offence under the Consumer protection Act 1987 and could lead to fine or imprisonment. Reside can organise a gas safety check by a Gas Safe registered engineer to obtain a certificate prior to tenants moving in and annually thereafter.
The Electrical Equipment Safety Regulations require landlords to have the electrical installations in their properties inspected and tested by a person who is qualified and competent, at least every 5 years. Starting from 1st June 2020 Landlords have to provide a copy of the electrical safety report to their tenants prior to their moving in, and to their local authority if requested. The electrical installation will have to meet the standards of the 18th edition of the Wiring Regulations.
All buildings in the private rental sector require an EPC. This certificate will remain valid for 10 years. Landlords are required by law to obtain and make available a copy of the EPC, free of charge, to all prospective tenants. An EPC has to be produced before a property is offered up for rental. Starting from 2018 any domestic private rented property has to comply with the Minimum Level of Energy Efficiency Standard (MEES) (EPC Band E). From 1st April 2020 landlords cannot let or continue to let properties covered by the MEES Regulations id they have an EPC rating below E unless they have a valid exemption in place, If your property does not currently meet the standards, you have to take action to improve the property’s rating. Rating can be improved by upgrading items such as windows, heating and water heating systems, light fittings and insulation
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