Landlords

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Landlord FAQ's

Over the years we have had a lot of questions asked of us, here is just a selection of the more common ones, along with a short answer. If you have any specific questions please feel free to call or e-mail with them.

Q: How will you work out the rental value of my property?
Before we visit your property we will carry out some homework. We will already know of similar properties to yours that we have previously Let and in addition to this we will ensure a broad knowledge of properties that are currently being offered in and around your area.

Q: What if I think it’s worth more?
It is important that the Agent gives a realistic and honest opinion and to establish what sort of Tenant is looking for property like yours and just how many there are. This will have a big effect on the rental price and ensure that it is rented at the best rent in the shortest amount of time. This said we would usually be happy to try marketing at your own figure initially with a view to reducing the price if the property remains vacant.

Q: How long is the Tenancy normally for?
There is no set period for a Tenancy although generally we find the most common period is either 6 or 12 months.

Q: How long will it take & how will you find a suitable Tenant?
The most important thing when letting your property is that your Agent ensures you have the best quality Tenant that is available at the time. The average time to find a Tenant is between 1 – 3 weeks but finding the right Tenant is the most important thing. A bad Tenant can cost thousands of pounds in lost rent and legal fees and so whilst we appreciate that you will want your property occupied as soon as possible we will always do our best to ensure we only put in the right Tenant.

Q: Does it affect my rights if I let the property unfurnished?
No. It makes no difference under the Housing Act if property is let furnished or unfurnished to your rights to regain possession of the property.

Q: What if the Tenant damages the property or doesn’t pay the rent?
Unfortunately it is not possible to give you a 100% guarantee that Tenants will never cause damage or fail to pay the rent. We can suggest a number of ways to minimize the possibility such as credit referencing, legal & rental warranty insurance and taking a damage deposit at the start of the Tenancy. Ultimately if the worst happens you will be entitled to seek vacant possession of the property and to make deductions for any damage or costs from the Tenant’s deposit subject to having had a carefully prepared Inventory taken and signed at the start of the Tenancy.

Q: What guarantees do I have that I will get my property back at the end of the Tenancy?
The Housing Act 1988 (amended 1996 & 2004) resolved most of the problems regarding regaining possession at the end of a Tenancy. This being said it is vital that you use a well drafted Tenancy Agreement that ensures all the necessary legal notices are incorporated.

Q: Who do I need to get permission from before I let my property?
This will depend on the type of property, certainly you should seek permission from your lender if you have a mortgage and in addition to this if your property is Leasehold then you should also seek permission from them. It is also important that you check with your insurers that your current cover is suitable for rental properties.

 

 

 

Property Management.

Using a professional Agent to find you a Tenant for your property is only half of the job. Ensuring that the Tenancy is well looked after for the duration of the Term is a specialist job in itself.

Steps Estate agents train all of it’s management staff to ensure we provide not only the highest level of service to you, the Landlord, but also to make sure that we have the knowledge and ability to deal with any of the many issues that may arise during the Tenancy.

Obviously we all hope that there are no problems at all during the Tenancy but if there are they can be time consuming and costly to deal with. By employing a professional Managing Agent you can be assured that we are able to deal with any problems that may arise whilst leaving you free to carry on with your own life.

Property Management is a specialized field that covers so many different areas it really isn’t possible to list them all here but here are just a few examples of how we can make things easier for you and save you money in the long run:

Maintenance

This is without doubt one of the most contentious areas of property rental and is often the main cause of dispute between Landlord & Tenant. These disputes are usually as a result of misunderstandings about who is responsible for what when it comes to rental properties. Steps Estate Agents Management staff are experienced and well trained to deal with incoming calls and as a result are able to distinguish very quickly between issues that are genuinely the Landlords responsibility and those that should be the Tenants. Through many years in the industry our staff can also often check the background to certain issues and resolve them over the phone thus saving the need to call out a contractor and therefore unnecessary expenses to the Landlord.

When we do have to call out a contractor it will be someone who is on our approved panel, who has public liability insurance and has proved to us that they offer a high standard of work at a reasonable price.

Rent Arrears

This is obviously the most dreaded situation for most Landlords and hopefully you will never experience this. However if it does happen it is comforting to know that Steps Estate Agents Property Managers work to a rigid structure that aims to deal with arrears in a way that gets them paid before they get out of hand and in most cases we manage to achieve this without the need for further Legal action.

In the event that we are unsuccessful then we will be on hand to talk you through the complicated Laws of eviction and can instruct solicitors on your behalf and we will even appear in Court on your behalf if necessary.

Nowadays there are several rental warranty policies available and as your managing agent we would strongly recomend them as, if the worse comes to the worst, they will ensure peace of mind and that you suffer little, if any, financial loss. To find out more about this please call your local office who will be happy to explain exactly what is covered. 


End of Tenancy Disputes & Queries

Since the advent of Deposit Protection this is an area where we spend a lot of time on behalf our clients. With it now being necessary to prove any deductions are valid and get the Tenant to agree with you this really is an area of our Management service that is worth it’s weight in gold!

We regularly attend training courses to keep up with the way that dilapidations are viewed through the Deposit schemes and have found that though careful negotiation, good knowledge allowing for clear explanation and a little compromise we normally manage to come to a satisfactory agreement without the need for the lottery of independent arbitration. These are some of the common and time consuming disputes that we deal with every day so our clients don’t have to.

 FEES:

Tenant find only £900.00 Inc VAT

Rent Collection Service 12% inc VAT

Management Service 15% Inc VAT

Click here for a full breakdown of our fees and charges.

Please note these are our standard fees, please ask about any discounts or special offers you may be entitled too.

Client money protection
(cmp) provided by: arla
Independent redress
Provided by: tpos

 

 


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