Landlord Guides & Services

THE FIRST STEP TO A SUCCESSFUL LET

Once you have contacted us, we will arrange a convenient time to meet with you at your property so as to provide a professional and realistically attainable rental valuation. We will consider location, number of bedrooms, market demand taking into account our vast market understanding and the condition of the property.

At this stage we can also offer advice on furnishings and any maintenance work that could help you attain a higher rent or make the property more attractive. Our knowledgeable members of staff can ensure you are aware of insurances and your legal or other responsibilities as a landlord.

We also offer a specialist service offering extensive advice for landlords looking for investments. Our understanding of the rental industry in this area gives Mike Neville Property Management an advantageous position to advise landlords on where to buy for the best return. Providing this service to many landlords over the years has seen us help grow substantial portfolios for our clients.


HOW WE GET YOUR PROPERTY OUT THERE

Our dedicated residential lettings departments operate from offices in Rushden, Northamptonshire, Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire covering a vast area of the region.

Our offices are open 9.00am to 6.00pm Monday to Friday, Saturdays 9.00am to 4.00pm and Sundays and bank holidays 10.00am to 3.00pm. We feel our longer hours offer an advantage over other agencies allowing prospective tenants to easily arrange viewings around work or at the weekends.

Professional marketing is key to finding the right tenant. Your property will be advertised on the unrivalled online property search engines, Rightmove, Zoopla, and Primelocation, which gives the most efficient way of promotion to a wide array of people. We also cater to the local audience through advertising in the Evening Telegraph weekly and send mail shots regularly to the larger establishments in Rushden and the surrounding areas and to relocation agents for company lets. By providing this cover all approach we can excel in promoting your property to the right people and reducing any long periods where your property will be empty.


HOW WE MANAGE YOUR PROPERTY


EFFECTIVE AND RELIABLE REFERENCE CHECKS

We utilise the services of a professional credit referencing agency to screen all prospective tenants. This enables us to ensure that the most suitable tenant is in your property.

Any tenants who cannot meet the requirements are required to provide a guarantor, who is referenced in the same way, and also becomes party to the contract.


PREPARING FOR THE TENANCY

Once a suitable tenant is obtained and a date is set for the tenancy to begin we will organise a professionally produced schedule of contents. This important document provides an accurate record of the property, the contents and their condition. We also take detailed photographs of the entire property as added protection for you. We use this document to monitor whether the tenant is looking after the property on our regular three monthly inspections, and to assess whether any of the security deposit should be retained at the end of the tenancy.

We will prepare all necessary legal documents including the tenancy agreement and, if necessary, a Deed of Guarantor for your tenants and ensure they are correctly brought into effect. Prior to tenants moving into the property, we will collect the first month’s rent and a security deposit in cleared funds. This deposit will be protected, as legally required, by one of the nominated Protected Deposit Schemes.


DURING THE TENANCY

Rents are collected during the month and monies will be paid out to you within 14 days of your rent payment date. In the event of missed payments a member of staff will contact the tenant to ascertain the reason for the arrears and arrange for future payments to be paid on time.

Our branches maintain computerised systems for keeping in touch with you and your tenant from the moment your tenant moves in to the day they move out. We also monitor the condition of your property through our regular routine inspections.

Each tenant, at the beginning of their tenancy, will be assigned a personal manager who will deal with any issues raised by the tenant quickly and efficiently. This personal manager will keep you informed of any issues raised and will discuss with you how is best to proceed.


END OF TENANCY

When we receive notice from the tenant, we will notify you as soon as possible and automatically start to advertise for new tenants unless otherwise instructed.

Once the tenant has agreed a date to vacate the property we will require them to bring in the keys directly to the office and ask them to provide forwarding details. We will then arrange to visit the property to review the condition with the reference to the schedule of

content. At this point, if any remedial works need to be undertaken, we will arrange for the security deposit to be used for this purpose. If appropriate, allowing for wear and tear, it may be a time to have a quick makeover and freshen of the property before marketing to new tenants as we advise that you update your property as often as possible.


TENANCY DEPOSIT PROTECTION SCHEME

All deposits (for rent up to £25.000 per annum) taken by landlords and letting agents for Assured Shorthold Tenancies in England and Wales, must be protected by a government approved tenancy deposit protection scheme.

If a deposit is not protected, the landlord will be breaking the law. In the event of a landlord needing to regain possession of the property they will be unable to use notice-only grounds for possession under section 21 of the Housing Act 1988.

A tenant is also entitled to apply for a court order requiring the deposit to be protected, or for the prescribed information to be given to them. If the court finds that the landlord has failed to comply with these requirements, or that the deposit is not being held in accordance with an authorised scheme, the court must either:

- Order the landlord to repay the deposit within 14 days of the issuing of the court order, or

- Order the landlord to pay the deposit into the designated account held by the custodial scheme administrator. The court must also order the landlord to pay the tenant (or person who paid the deposit on his/her behalf) an amount equivalent to three times the deposit amount within 14 days of making the order. By using a nominated Protected Deposit Scheme, we ensure that all the correct requirements are complied with.


GETTING YOUR PROPERTY READY FOR RENTING - HELPFUL TIPS


MORTGAGES 

If your property is to be let subject to a mortgage, you should seek possession of your mortgagee at the earliest date. We would be happy to aid you with the application forms or provide any information that the mortgagee may require.


ADEQUATE INSURANCES

For your protection and peace of mind, you should ensure that your property and its contents are adequately insured, it is advisable to check that your policy covers lettings.


GAS SAFETY CHECKS AND REGULATIONS

The Gas Safety (installation and use) 1998 compels landlords to ensure that all gas appliances are maintained in good order and checked for safety at least every 12 months by a registered gas installer. We can arrange the appropriate checks to be done by a registered installer/engineer before your tenants move into the property. In line with the legal requirements, we keep records of all safety checks. When necessary, we are able to organise gas checks, annual servicing and maintenance. An estimate of the cost of repair will be obtained and the repair will only be carried out with your permission.


ELECTRICAL REGULATIONS

Where electrical appliances are left in the property, it is a legal requirement that you ensure these items are fit and safe to use. You also have a duty of care to ensure that the electrical wiring is in a safe condition. We would be happy to arrange one of our qualified contractors to carry out the work on your behalf if instructed.


FIRE SAFETY

The Smoke Detector Act 1991 places the onus on you, as landlord, to install adequate smoke detectors (one per storey) in all tenanted properties.

All communal areas of apartment buildings are required to be in compliance with current regulations and Fire Risk Assessed. Advice and more details can be given upon request.

The Fire and Furnishings (fire) (safety) Regulations  1988 states that all domestic upholstered furniture, furnishings and other products containing upholstery which are not fire resistant must be removed from the property, unless the let is for six months only and the landlord intends to return to the property

The furniture should either carry an act display label, or should have been manufactured and upholstered before 1950 and after 1988. The Penalty for non-compliance is a fine of up to £5.000 and/or six months imprisonment.


LEGIONELLA BACTERIA CONTROL

All landlords must comply with the law and take adequate steps to prevent the risk of anyone contracting Legionnaires Disease. They must identify and assess sources of risk, prevent the risk, put in place the appropriate measures to control and manage such risks. They must inform occupiers, including tenants of risks identified and provide guidance in the safe use and management of their water.

Assessment records must be kept for at least five years and must be reviewed on a regular basis to ensure control measures are effective.

Reassessments should be undertaken at least every two years or whenever there is reason to do so. We would be happy to arrange a specialist to carry out the required assessments on your behalf.


ENERGY PERFORMANCE CERTIFICATE

As legally required, landlords offering property for rent must provide prospective tenants with an Energy Performance Certificate for their property. EPCs will be valid for 10 years and a free copy must be provided to any prospective tenant either when any written information is provided or at the point of viewing. To ensure compliance, all our advertisements will contain the EPC and a copy is provided once the Tenancy Agreement is signed.

The EPC is based on an assessment or inspection of insulation, space heating, water heating, window type, size of property, utility types and sources. We have qualified engineers that can provide the EPC on your instruction.