Our Senior Property Manager Callum has answer some FAQs from new and existing Landlords...
Q-1) What are the benefits of using a managing agent for my rental property?
A-1) There can be many benefits of using a managing agent during the term of a Tenancy. Some of the main benefits are, not having to worry about the day-to-day management of the property, not receiving calls in evenings or weekends if there are any issues with the property and not having to deal with issues such as rent arrears. Using an agent also means you can avoid having a personal relationship with Tenants.
Q-2) Is there a minimum lease term in Scotland?
A-2) From December 2017, Private Residential Tenancy Agreements replaced Assured/Short Assured Tenancies in Scotland meaning that lease agreements have no set minimum terms and Tenants can provide notice at any time. Landlords can also provide notice however, must certain criteria must be met.
Q-3) Do I need to make my mortgage lender aware I am renting out my property?
A-3) Yes, the vast majority of lenders need to be notified that your property is going to be rented out
Q-4) Do I need contents insurance as a Landlord even though the property is unfurnished?
A-4) Always check the small print. As an extra precaution, we would say yes as some insurers do not cover damage to flooring, kitchens, bathrooms, etc under buildings only.
Q-5) Should I furnish my property before renting?
A-5) This can be at the Landlord discretion. We would recommend properties are left unfurnished and with white goods. Damage to furniture can be hard to determine meaning Landlords will be liable to replace over time. Leaving furniture also limits the scope of potential Tenants as many prospective Tenants have their own or would look to buy their own to suit their own needs and taste.
Q-6) Who is liable for bills?
A-6) During tenancies, Tenants are liable for bills such as Council Tax, Utility bills, etc. In the majority of cases, Landlords would be liable for any communal charges or factor fees.
Q-7) How often can properties be inspected?
A-7) At Mavor & Company, we inspect properties as close to every 3 months where possible. Tenants are entitled to live in properties without constant inspections unless urgently required, for example; in situations where there have been complaints, suspected damage caused, etc.
Q-8) What safety certificates do I need before renting out my property?
A-8) Landlord Gas Safety Certificate, Electrical Installation and Condition Report, Legionella Risk Assessment and PAT test
Q-9) Can I just keep my Tenants deposit until they leave?
A-9) Unfortunately, no. Government legislation introduced in 2011 means that all Tenant’s deposits must be lodged with an approved Deposit scheme within 30 days of the Tenancy
Q-10) What measures are put in place to ensure my property isn’t damaged or rent arrears escalate?
A-10) It is important that we try and build a working relationship with Tenants as well as Landlords so that in the event of circumstances changing or problems arising, we are able to work together in finding the best solution. With Property inspections being carried out every 3 months, we are able to quickly gauge whether the property is being well looked after or if there are concerns. We carry out pre-tenancy checks such as Credit checks as well as Employment and Landlord references (where necessary) just to check that there have been no previous issues or reasons to be concerned. 99% of the time it is not like what you see on the TV!!