Letting property without agent

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    Letting property without agent

    Hello all,

    I'd be grateful for any tips!

    I am planning to let my property. I have let my property before however I've only ever done so through an agent. This time, I'd like to rent without using an agent.

    The neighbour of the property, an old man, has a son who has moved back to the UK recently after 10 years living abroad. The son needs a place to stay and is finding it difficult due to the lockdown, his budget and the fact that he has pets.

    He has told me he would like to rent my property, as it is next door to his elderly father.

    He is looking to purchase a property once things are clearer in this current situation and thus needs somewhere to live in the meantime. Due to all the uncertainty we are facing, he is not sure if this could be 3 months or 6 months, or more.

    I am willing to accept pets and his budget fits in with me. I've met him with his father once before lockdown, and had some casual text conversation over the past couple weeks. Seems like a nice guy.

    1. What are the legal responsibilities I need to fulfil?
    2. As far as I am aware, I need to do three things: get an EPC, get a gas safety certificate, protect the deposit under a scheme. Am I missing anything else?
    3. Are there any legal obligations with regards to smoke alarms? Gov.uk doesn't mention anything
    4. What tenancy deposit scheme do you recommend and why?
    5. What tenancy agreement template do you recommend I use?
    6. Do you suggest a fixed term (say 6 month) contract or a periodic (month-by-month) one? And why?
    8. Do you suggest I get references somehow?
    9. Do I need to ask any further questions or vet him in any more formal sense?
    10. Any other tips or tricks or things I should be aware of, based on your experience and expertise? Anything I haven't given any thought to?

    Thanks,
    Gerard

    #2
    Have you undertaken any LL training?
    Min fixed Term 6 months, then auto SPT.
    We are not allowed to make other recomendations.

    Comment


      #3
      Don't do this until you are a lot more knowledgeable about how to let and manage a rental property. I would suggest you join the NRLA and either quickly read all their guides or use an agent again.

      Comment


        #4
        We have been renting our flats successfully for years, and we're not members of any association. However, you do need to educate yourself thoroughly. This site is good enough for the purpose. One little comment for your situation. Your tenant can't pick and choose how many months the rent term will be. It has to be a 6 month fixed term, and if he leaves earlier, he is still liable for the rent for the rest of the contract. I don't even think it's such a big thing to ask, if he has a job that allows him to afford the rent (which you need to check by requesting a reference from his employer and three last bank statement, which will also give you ample of information about his money-managing skills). He can start looking for a place of his own after 6 months' period. Also, point out to him that by taking him with a pet, you're doing him a favour. Many real estate agencies don't even take tenants with pets on their books. Holbrook Moran, for once don't.

        Comment


          #5
          An AST can be any length. It doesn't have to be a minimum of 6 months. Six months is just the minimum guaranteed term, so it is in the landlords interest to fix the term for 6 months, however, there is nothing to stop the landlord and tenant agreeing 3 months and letting it go periodic thereafter.

          Comment


            #6
            1-Lots, and if you don't know, use an agent or get some training.
            2-Yes, you are missing things.
            3-Yes (and don't rely on the government for advice).
            4-Any of them.
            5-The governments template.
            6-Always a fixed term first.
            7-Always check your counting.
            8-Be an idiot not to.
            9-You need to properly credit check and reference the prospective tenant. Son of a neighbour is no kind of reference.
            10See #1
            When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
            Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
              1-Lots, and if you don't know, use an agent or get some training.
              2-Yes, you are missing things.
              3-Yes (and don't rely on the government for advice).
              4-Any of them.
              5-The governments template.
              6-Always a fixed term first.
              7-Always check your counting.
              8-Be an idiot not to.
              9-You need to properly credit check and reference the prospective tenant. Son of a neighbour is no kind of reference.
              10See #1
              With regards to number 7. I apologise. I am 68 years old.

              Comment


                #8
                Some here are saying an AST can be any length, and some saying it must be a minimum of 6 months... Any clarity on this?

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by Gerard55 View Post
                  Some here are saying an AST can be any length, and some saying it must be a minimum of 6 months... Any clarity on this?
                  An AST can be any length (under three years without being a deed).

                  A landlord can't serve notice under s21 until the tenancy is in its 4th month, so 6 months is the practical minimum.
                  At the moment, it's effectively 7 months, but that's temporary.

                  Longer than 6 months is unwise, because there's nothing positive for the landlord in it being longer and, again, it limits the opportunity to use s21 if things aren't going as planned.
                  When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
                  Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Don't worry about the training , most agents have no qualifications or training either and have less incentive than you to protect your interest!
                    Plenty of info online and read the government's 'how to let' guide to see what you're missing.
                    There are also plenty of generic ASTs available online you can adapt but don't you have one from previous lettings ?

                    Regards pets, the advantage is you can get a higher return and less voids as pet owners stay longer , hopefully once your tenant settles in next to his dad he will want to stay beyond the 6 months.
                    I think it's a big advantage having dad next door as tenant will be unlikely to trash your house or do a runner when you know where his family are, but you still need to due diligence.
                    Don't bother with deposit if you are happy with Tenant, none of the schemes are fit for purpose.

                    IMO it sounds a good result.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by Section20z View Post
                      Don't bother with deposit if you are happy with Tenant, none of the schemes are fit for purpose.
                      What purpose are they not fit for?
                      When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
                      Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
                        An AST can be any length (under three years without being a deed).

                        A landlord can't serve notice under s21 until the tenancy is in its 4th month, so 6 months is the practical minimum.
                        At the moment, it's effectively 7 months, but that's temporary.

                        Longer than 6 months is unwise, because there's nothing positive for the landlord in it being longer and, again, it limits the opportunity to use s21 if things aren't going as planned.
                        Thank you jpkeates. 6 months sounds like a good call.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
                          What purpose are they not fit for?
                          I think the poster meant that the adjudication system favours tenant more than landlord. With which I agree, having been through a few disputes. However, it's not useless. In the first case we got 100% of deposit back, in the second - part of it.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            I've never had any issues with adjudication.
                            On the other hand, I only claim for things that I'm entitled to claim for at the appropriate value.

                            It's easy to use the schemes and not use the adjudication mechanism, you just have to accept that you'll spend some time being sued.
                            Where a court will adopt exactly the same calculations as the deposit adjudicators.

                            The schemes weren't introduced to adjudicate claims, that became necessary to make things work.
                            The basic problem was that some landlords were simply treating the deposit as income.
                            When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
                            Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Join the RLA as well, they have an advice line and all the documents you need

                              https://www.rla.org.uk/referral



                              HVA-981


                              also if you use this code, you receive £15 off your first year membership (making it only £60) and its tax deductible expense

                              Comment

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