We can help landlords with a range of matters, from tenancy agreements to evictions and more. Take a look below at the key things we can help with. Or, call us now on 01925 351 350 to discuss your situation.
New Landlords & What to Do Before Letting to A New Tenant
If you are a new landlord, you might think you just need a property, a tenant, and a lease to say that they pay you to use your property. But, there are several things you will need to check before letting to a tenant. So, we put together a simple checklist to help you get things sorted. You can download it here:
However, please note that this is meant as a simple guide only and this may not be an exhaustive list of everything you are required to do. It is your responsibility to know what you are required to do.
You should be aware that at the core of letting your property is the tenancy agreement. The tenancy agreement sets out in writing the rights and obligations for both you as a landlord and your tenant.
So how do you write the lease? A good starting point is to use the government’s model agreement for a shorthold assured tenancy. But, as a landlord, you may want a bit more protection and some additional clauses. That could be to ensure that your property isn’t used in ways which might result in damage or loss.
There are many factors you should consider for your own tenancy agreements, which may go beyond any basic templates. Some of these factors might include:
- Allowing pets in the property
- Whether smoking should be allowed
- Care of the garden and the interior
- Detailed inventories
- Who can live there
- Additional repairs you would be willing to take on
- Other restrictions you may wish to impose
If you need help sorting your tenancy agreement out, give us a call on 01925 351 350 to discuss your requirements.
Help With Evictions
Help with Evictions & Notices (Residential Tenants)
If you wish to evict a tenant, you will need to serve the correct notice in a valid way – this is not easy to get right. Read more about how we can help you with evictions below. And, to find out more about how much our services will cost, please see our pricing page.
Notice to Quit – Section 8
A section 8 eviction is served when a tenant has breached the terms of the lease and you as a landlord have grounds for possession. This can be served at any point during a tenancy. However, you should ensure that you only do this in appropriate circumstances. And, it must be done right as the tenant may contest any grounds stated in a section 8 notice.
Notice of Possession – Section 21
You can serve a section 21 notice even if the tenant hasn’t breached their tenancy, unlike section 8 notices. But, a notice of possession cannot be served within the fist 4 months of tenancy. The notice period can’t end before the fixed term and must give 2 months’ notice minimum to leave the property.
Fitness for Human Habitation (Homes Act)
The Fitness for Human Habitation Act, often just called the Homes Act, is a new law which says your properties must be fit to live in. Put simply, it sets minimum standards of fitness for habitation any leased property covered by the act. Put simply, it sets minimum standards of fitness for habitation for:
- Leases in England
- Any tenancy with a fixed term of less than 7 years
The Homes Act currently covers all leases created after 20th March 2019. But, there is a big change coming when the Homes Act comes into full effect on 20th March 2020.
So, you need to act now to make sure your property meets the required standards. Otherwise, you could find yourself with legal liability – which could be costly for compensation and legal fees.
Full Liability Check
Briefly, the Homes Act is designed to ensure landlords keep the properties they let suitable for their tenants to live in. There is a long list of issues, or liabilities, in the act, which include:
- Making sure the property isn’t too cold
- Making sure the property isn’t too hot
- Installing security features such as door locks
- Dealing with pests, damp, and general neglect or disrepair
- Managing overcrowding and making sure there is enough space for tenants
So, for a full liability check and advice about the impending changes, give us a call on 01925 351 350. We can explain your responsibilities according to the law and talk you through what you need to do.
How Chris Rudd Solicitors Can Help
Need help as a landlord? Please get in touch with us for help. We’d be happy to discuss your situation with up to 15 minutes free advice. You can call us on 01925 351 350 or email us on [email protected]. Or, you can complete the form on our contact page to send us a message.
If you are unfortunate enough to find yourself on the wrong end of a claim where:
- The tenant is claiming the property is unfit to live in
- The tenant claims that it is in a state of disrepair, and that you have failed to put things right
Please get in touch so we can discuss how we can help you resolve the situation.
Low rates and Easy ways to pay
We know how difficult it is to budget for unexpected fees and costs. So, we offer easy ways to pay, low rates, and payment plans where you can pay us monthly. Our ‘Let’s Get started’ service gives you access to our basic advice to lower your stress levels for an initial payment of only £150 + VAT. For more information, please see our Easy Ways To Pay page.