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Setting Up The Tenancy

Selecting The Right Tenant

Choosing the right tenant is vital. The tenant must be chosen not only for their ability to pay the rent but also for their ability to look after the property. At Premier Lets and Sales we use a professional referencing company to vet our tenants. The referencing includes affordability testing, credit scoring and employment references.

Tenancy Agreements

The Assured Shorthold Tenancy was introduced in February 1987 and gives landlords the mandatory right to regain possession of their property by giving the tenant sufficient notice. The tenant only has security of tenure for the agreed term of the lease. Leases can be renewed for further terms or can roll on, known as a ‘statutory periodic tenancy’, in which case the landlord would be required to give two months’ notice to regain the property and the tenant would need to give one month’s notice from the rent due date.

Premier Lets and Sales’ tenancies are extremely comprehensive and comply with all the latest housing regulations.

Deposits

All deposits taken for Assured Shorthold Tenancies have to be protected under a government approved Tenancy Deposit Scheme. The deposit can either be held in a custodial scheme or an insurance backed scheme where the landlord keeps the deposit but pays a fee to have the deposit protected.

The deposit is held so the landlord can recover any costs for damage (‘fair wear and tear’ accepted), cleaning or rent arrears at the end of the tenancy. As most deductions from deposits are for cleaning, decorating and damage to carpets, it is most important that a full schedule of condition (inventory) is provided each time a new tenant moves in, regardless of whether the property is furnished or not. If the tenant disputes any deductions, they can have their case adjudicated independently through the Deposit Scheme.

Inventories

A landlord needs to provide documentary evidence when making deductions from a deposit. Therefore it is vital that a very detailed inventory with supporting photographs is provided to the tenant. Many disputes have resulted in a full return of the deposit to the tenant, as the landlord could not provide sufficient evidence to successfully prove their case.

At Premier Lets and Sales we have dedicated inventory staff who are fully trained and qualified with The Association of Professional Inventory Providers (APIP). As members of APIP landlords can be assured that our inventories meet the professional standard required to protect our clients. We also fully photograph our properties.

Utilities

The tenant is responsible for paying for the council tax, gas, electricty,water and sewerage rates. During void periods the landlord will be responsible for any usage and any standing charges. There is an exemption period of normally one month or six months, depending on the local council, for properties that are unoccupied and unfurnished. This exemption does not apply for fully furnished properties.

Go Back to Part 2 – Getting ready for Rental Move onto Part 4 – Who Should You Consult Before Letting Your Property and Regulations