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Everything posted by Grampa

  1. If the check-in/inventory and check-out clearly highlight differences and you have the inventory signed by the tenant there is no reason why you cant claim a deduction from the tenants deposit however they have the right to dispute it. We find the best way to deal with this is to first inform the tenant there are some issues to make good and explain you have instructed a cleaner to visit and a someone else to replace the bulb and battery and the cost will be deducted from there deposit. As long as you have your facts clear and some before and after photos you can send if requested by the tenant plus sensible costs for rectifying there is a good chance just they will just be ok about it. But any overinflated invoices with sneaked in extras which a lot of landlords (and some agents) try to add will just cause a headache in the long run. Deposit deductions if managed and communicated well can normally be a easy process but there can be exceptions to the rule.
  2. Grampa

    Ms Amanda

    Horses for courses. I dont think there is a right or wrong way with this issue its personal choice but as you become so cynical in this industry I just assume I would then get inundated with unnecessary requests thereafter if the landlord/agent deals with..
  3. Grampa

    Ms Amanda

    We as a agent would treat it differently. We class it the same as any pest or infestation. If it occurs during the tenancy and not caused by a breach of the landlords repairing obligation or structural defect and was not there at the start of the tenancy it is the tenants responsibility to resolve. Otherwise where do you draw the line? If you had a red ants infestation in the garden or field mice would you also swallow the cost of that also? Our tenancies do also allow for this which you would need. Though I do acknowledge sometimes for the sake of good tenant/landlord relations it may be prudent for the landlord to deal with.
  4. I agree with RL. Any tenant who asks for a 2 year tenancy at the start would ring alarm bells. There is a possibility it is a genuine request but it would be foolish to grant it to a new unknown tenant. Just say your policy is to only grant a 6 month tenancy first and you will consider granting a longer one after that. I find most tenants are happy to accept that.
  5. Will all installations have to comply with the 18th edition, even if they were installed before this edition was in force? The Regulations state that a landlord must ensure that electrical safety standards are met, and that investigative or remedial work is carried out if the report requires this. The electrical installation should be safe for continued use. In practice, if the report does not require investigative or remedial work, the landlord will not be required to carry out any further work. Reports can also recommend improvement, in addition to requiring remedial work. If a report only recommends improvement but does not require any further investigative or remedial work to be carried out – indicated with a ‘C3’ classification code – then while it would be good practice to carry out this work, it would not be required to comply with the Regulations.
  6. Well although at first the regulation appears to state consumer unit needs to be brought up to 18th Edition. The government brought out an amendment/further guidance stating words to the effect that if you had a 17th Edition consumer unit it was be acceptable. I cant find the link to it at the moment but as soon as I do I will post it here.
  7. https://www.lawcom.gov.uk/millions-of-leaseholders-to-benefit-from-law-commission-reforms/
  8. Get your own quote to rectify and make safe. Then put the council on notice if it is not rectified by them by xx days you will be instructing solicitors to recover all costs and lost rent. Requesting details of their complaints procedure also focuses the mind of companies/LA etc due to the amount of work it generates to reply/defend. Add that you are considering requesting for all data and copies of correspondence relating to you in paper form not electronic which is your right if this is not resolved can also put the pressure on due to the time it takes. I did this recently with a large firm of solicitors who where trying to charge an extortionate fee for a late payment of service charges. They couldn't drop me fast enough to come to a resolution.
  9. But if your tenants are NHS workers surely they have been working throughout the lock down and likely to also have pulled in a lot of overtime. Or am I missing something???
  10. Ah but will they later bring the same to England?
  11. The property sales market has gone mad. I haven’t seen anything like it for years. Numerous valuation requests, properties being sold within 24hrs or even before going live with one phone call. More offers than usual for the full asking price. We even sold a property for 25k over the asking price with a bun fight between buyers competing and upping their offers and this was after competing with 2 other local agents to get the instruction in the first place and our valuation was still 30k higher than the other two. The big question is --- How long will it last??????
  12. Opps, I predict a mass exodus of landlords in Wales. Today (23 July 2020), Julie James MS, Minister for Housing and Local Government of the Welsh Government has announced new rules which will require six months notice to be given to tenants in Wales from tomorrow (24 July 2020).
  13. With your leaseholders hat on you are legally entitled to see copies of receipts for works which may give you more information of the scope of works the contractors are contracted to do. You may even be able to call them direct for further information once you know who they are but there is no guarentee they will give any info to you. Any works that cost more than £250 per unit should only be done if the section 20 process is followed which has certain timescales and 3 (i think) quotes obtained but also giving the option of the leaseholder to suggest their own contractor to tender. Take a look at this website which is for leaseholders. https://www.lease-advice.org/
  14. Well my understanding of the law is unless there is a ruling in the high court which this doesn’t appear to be or an act of parliament so it’s written into statute this is just a decision at local level for this case only.
  15. The tenant still has to pass any affordability check. So if the rent is higher than the HB rates that would be a reason to refuse in the same way if a working tenant income was too low. Also I guess if you can prove the lender doesn’t allow that not you refusing but your lender/insurance company etc. I’m personally not too bothered with the ruling even with my no HB properties, there is always a work around.
  16. Also housing benefit rates have shot up in my area. A 2 bed property limit was £728pcm and has just increased to £822pcm. Not good for the poor taxpayer but the landlord with HB tenants has just had a result. Mmmmmmmm do I kick out my retired couple tenants paying 740pcm from their pension and put in a single mum on full benefit of 822pcm. That was tongue in cheek and i wouldnt do that but there will be a lot of landlords that would seriously consider that and would.
  17. From a agent perspective the tenant could argue having a water softener was part of their decision making in choosing that property in the first place. (unlikely but possible) so therefore they are entitled to it being replaced. You could just tell the tenant it will not be replaced or ask them their thoughts on it not being replaced. I would think making the big jump from soft water to hard water would be quite noticeable (extra limescale on showers, taps etc) and would be surprised if they dont make a little issue of it. Would you question it if all of a sudden you had all this extra limescale cleaning to do. This has got me thinking now, should I have a extra clause in the tenancy to cover this? It could be a slight amendment to a current clause in the agreement I am using at present.
  18. I did look into that but I'm not prepared to pay the extra cost and apparently you cant remortgage for 6 months after purchase anyway so those extra fees/interest will be quite substantial. There certainly appears on the face of it a agenda to make it harder to be a Landlord. But we have all known this for a few years and the writing has been on the wall.
  19. Just encountered a EPC problem with a BTL property I am purchasing. Now we are all aware you cant rent out a property with a EPC rating below a E. But having just had a offer accepted on a BTL property and a BTL mortgage agreed in principle I was surprised to just be told the lender TMW will now not lend on it because the EPC rating is a F/G. The rating is this because it hasn't got any heating, but I plan to renovate with new combi boiler and rads etc, which I know will bring it up to a E/D. The lender will release funds if the works (to bring up EPC rating) are under 5k and put a retention of 5k for 3 months on the mortgage. If over 5k NO MORTGAGE GRANTED But the lenders valuer who didn't even visit the property says it needs 21k of works to bring it up to a E rating and he comes by that figure by totaling the all the suggested works on the original EPC such as under floor heating, internal & external wall insulation and solar panels. There wasn't even a option for boiler even though the property doesn't have one. So it looks like I have to get another report from a EPC assessor to state if I instal a combi boiler, loft insulation and LED lighting and provide quotes totaling under 5k I can request the decision is overturned. So anyone trying to sell a property with a low EPC rating they will struggle to sell to the rental market unless the purchaser is a cash buyer.
  20. I like your thinking RL regarding your marketing tool suggestion . Unfortunately most the properties we sell dont generate great rental returns thats why my own personal rental purchases are a little out of my business area.
  21. Well, we have re-opened our offices with social distancing precautions and the market is very very active both for lettings and sales so cant complain. However, the common view in the industry is the knock on effect of the lock-down, impact on businesses failing and anticipated redundancies is chasing our tails and will hit the property world in Sept/Oct which is about a month before the industry traditionally starts slowing down for Xmas. Being an optimistic person I disagree and dont think there will be a huge impact then, maybe just a little drop. Thoughts
  22. You are not the first person to find renting to family or friends often doesnt work out. Mainly because the tenants think they can get away with paying late etc and for some reason they think the landlord hasnt the same bills and obligations as other landlords. I aways say if you want to rent to friends or family THAT is the time to use a agent so you can distance yourself.
  23. Just make sure your solicitor is on the ball and prompt. I find they dont have the sense of urgency as they should. He will probably be using grounds 8,10,11 but only ground 8 (2 month in arrears) is a mandatory possession if proven during the court hearing. Grounds 10 & 11 (late payment of rent) is discretionary so ideally you dont want the tenant to pay enough rent to get the arrears below 2 month. The below is based on pre COVID-19 days After service of the s8 on the tenant the solicitor can apply for a court hearing 14 days later and you should get a hearing date within 6 weeks & if the tenant is still at least 2 months in arrears you should get a possession order 14 days later. If the tenant hasn't vacated after those 14 days you need to apply for a court bailiff and depending how slow they are in your area that could be another 2-6 weeks approx. Ask your solicitor how fast the bailiffs are in your area and if there is a long wait your solicitor can ask at the court hearing you have the possession transferred to the high court so a high court sheriff (bailiff) can kick the tenant out which is a lot faster. This will cost more but if the rent isn't being paid at all it could be cheaper than waiting for normal court bailiffs. With all the constant changes in laws to be a landlord you either have to be very switched on and join a landlord association such as the guild of residential landlords for guidance and docs or use a letting agent.
  24. Is the tenant more than 2 months in arrears?
  25. From the details of your post it obvious you are a little green in being a landlord. (we all have to start somewhere) but I would seriously consider instructing a professional eviction company for this. You only need to get one small bit wrong with your application and/or have a missing or invalid document and the your claim will be struck out and you will be back to square one. ONLY USE a solicitor who specialises in housing law and evictions or an company that solely deals with evictions. Act fast otherwise these issues will drag out especially if you start believing all the sob stories
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