Documentation required to grant underletting

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    Documentation required to grant underletting

    Hi all!

    Sorry if this has been asked before but what documentation is the Freeholder legally allowed to ask for to register an underletting?

    I have a 1 bed flat, leased on a standard AST.

    My lease does not say anything about providing documenting yet my Freeholder whats copy's of tenancy agreement, guarantors, references, health and safety docs(Fire & Carbon Monoxide Regs, Electrical Cert, Gas Safe Cert, proof of Right to Rent)

    Am I breaking and GDPR laws by providing some of this info?

    Also, they are saying the registration is only valid for 12 months yet my lease does not say anything about a time limit only that it has to be reapplied for with every change of tenancy.

    Any help/clarification would be greatly appreciated!

    Thanks!

    #2
    That list seems excessive. The only reason they might ask for some of it is if is possible to forfeit your lease but still have the sub-tenant. That can happen for short leases, so it may be a possibility for long ones as well. I don't know how freeholders are being advised on this.

    Providing they can ask for consent at all they can probably make a case for all of that documentation. It is not really a question of what they can legally demand, but what you can legally supply. If you haven't obtained the legal clearances from the prospective tenant, you cannot get permission to sub-let, so you cannot sub-let. (See the thread about the agent withholding references from the shorthold landlord.)

    Health and safety, gas and electrical should not contain personal data, so should not be affected by GDPR.

    The tenancy agreement and references are pretty much essential to any sensible permission to sub-let scheme. The freeholder needs to be sure that the lease can be effectively enforced if the sub-tenant is at fault, which means that they need to see that you can enforce against the tenant if they enforce against you. References are reasonable, to make sure that the person will not cause anti-social behaviour issues.

    Generally, in these situations, the real question is about the fees for permission. Are they commensurate with the work actually done, or are they really there as an income stream, with the work being an excuse.

    Comment


      #3
      Thanks for your reply!

      When you say "providing they can ask for consent at all", what do you mean?

      Also, do you have any idea what "fire... regs" could mean? There's no gas in the property btw.

      Thanks!

      Comment


        #4
        Also, any light on renewing every 12 months regardless of tenancy change?

        Comment


          #5
          The freeholder can only insist that you request consent if the lease either forbids sub-letting, or allows it, but subject to consent. Sub-letting is often called under letting in leases.

          Renewing after 12 months sounds like a revenue stream thing, rather than genuine permission to sub-let. Are the charges of it consistent with revalidating the initial permission, rather than fully checking all the documents. If sub-letting is forbidden, they can make any rules they like,but if it is not to be unreasonable refused, the conditions must be reasonable, so charges for revalidation should only reflect 15 to 30 minutes of work.

          Comment


            #6
            The whole thing is a money making scheme. They want to charge you for reading those documents. (Filing them.)

            Comment


              #7
              The contract you have is the lease. It says what you have to do and what they can do. No more no less (unless the law dictates otherwise).

              Comment


                #8
                You are responsible for the fire safety of the tenants. That means you need to have done some sort of fire risk assessment. For single family sub-lets, that is often something you can do yourself, in which you might not have written it down, which may be a problem. If you are subletting to sharers, there are more extensive requirements.

                (If your entrance door opens onto an internal communal area, there are some fire risk mitigation things you should have done even without sub-letting.)

                In the single family case, I would suggest you write down the main conclusions of your assessment. If you haven't done one at all, you are failing in your duty as a landlord. It is now a legal requirement to have at least one smoke alarm, but the risk assessment for an, otherwise very safe, rental property is also likely to identify the need for a fire blanket in the kitchen. and that no doors should need a key to open them from the inside. More complex cases, may require internal fire doors, more sophisticated alarms, and emergency lighting

                Comment


                  #9
                  Whilst many freeholders use consents as revenue streams, if used for the proper purpose, they are valuable, as sub-landlords rarely consider the implications of their own lease when sub-letting, or the impact on neighbours.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by AndrewDod View Post
                    The contract you have is the lease. It says what you have to do and what they can do. No more no less (unless the law dictates otherwise).
                    That's what I've always thought so do I have to jump through these hoops or not??

                    I forgot to mention, the freehold is owned by a "Charitable Trust" (coincidently run by the same person who owns the managing agent 🤔) but they want me to pay the fee (which isn't huge, but besides the point) to a totally separate company I've never heard of! Is that legal?

                    Comment


                      #11
                      I guessed there'd be a fee. How many times do we have to tell you? It's a lot of nonsense. Any fire risk assessment is down to the freeholder to do.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by JK0 View Post
                        How many times do we have to tell you? It's a lot of nonsense. Any fire risk assessment is down to the freeholder to do.
                        But confused by this. Are you contradicting what Leaseholder64 said: "You are responsible for the fire safety of the tenants."

                        Also any opinions on the payment going to a third part company rather than the Charitable Trust who own the freehold?

                        Thanks!

                        Comment


                          #13
                          The one has nothing to do with the other

                          No opinion

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Originally posted by Fairs fair View Post

                            But confused by this. Are you contradicting what Leaseholder64 said: "You are responsible for the fire safety of the tenants."
                            Yes I am contradicting him.

                            Originally posted by Fairs fair View Post

                            Also any opinions on the payment going to a third part company rather than the Charitable Trust who own the freehold?

                            Thanks!
                            Don't send payment to anyone you don't have to.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              To clarify: the FH doing their fire risk assessment has nothing at all to do with your obligations. Nor are your obligations any business if the FH unless the lease gives you some in terms of FH. You might for example have to get fire alarms as a landlord, but that is no business of FH to know about.

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