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First time landlord guide: Legal Responsibilities

Meeting safety standards

Landlords must make sure tenants are safe, using the following:
*A smoke alarm must be installed on each floor of the property.
*Carbon monoxide detectors must be placed in rooms with a coal fire or wood burning stove.
*A gas safety certificate for each gas appliance must be available inside the property.
*To reduce risk of fire, all furniture must meet safety standards and display the appropriate labels.
*Any electrical devices must be safe for use, and we recommend an Installation Survey or Portable Appliance Testing (PAT) so you can be sure you are compliant.
*The water supply must be working properly to protect tenants from Legionella.
*A Housing, Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS) enables local authorities to evaluate a property’s situation and any future dangers. In the private rented segment, the goal is to keep excellent norms. Your Move can assist you know how your property can be covered by this legislation.

Right to rent

Landlords have a responsibility to restrict access to the private rented sector for illegal immigrants and must therefore ensure that a tenant is legally permitted to reside in the UK. If a landlord rents a property to a tenant who is not entitled to rent, the penalty is an infinite fine and imprisoned for up to five years. (There are some tenants you don’t need to verify, but that depends on accommodation types).

Information for your tenants

Your tenant must have the complete name and address of the landlord or his letting agent information. Your tenant must also obtain a copy of the How to Rent manual from the government that provides practical guidance on what to do before and during a letter.

Protecting a tenant’s deposit

Most tenancies are assured shorthold tenancies (AST) and as a landlord you have to protect the tenancy deposit with a deposit protection scheme approved by the UK.

A landlord of an AST who does not protect the deposit can be fined and it can make ending the tenancy much difficult.

Deposits must be transferred at the end of the tenancy in complete, unless there is a dispute about property damage or unpaid rent.

Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)

Before you let it, you will need to buy an EPC for a property as a landlord. The property must have an E minimum rating on its EPC from 1 April 2018 as it will be unlawful to rent any property that breaches this requirement with a penalty of up to £ 4,000.

Repairs

Landlords are responsible for most exterior or property structure repairs. This means that the landlords is responsible for any problems with the roof, chimneys, walls, guttering and drains. These might include a broken window, a faulty boiler, kitchen leakage, or a window leaky seal. Landlords are also responsible for maintaining the water, gas and energy supply facilities in secure operation.

When you choose Paramount Sales and Lettings fully managed package our lettings team will take care of all maintenance issues on your behalf.

Accessing the property

As a landlord it is inevitable that in order to carry out repairs and inspections you will need to access the property from time to time. Access should not, however, cause your tenant unnecessary interference.

Give sufficient notice and arrange an appropriate time with yourself and the tenant, generally the notification period is set out in your tenancy agreement.