Landlords

STAR ESTATES AND LETTINGS LTD provides a range of letting and management services based on the experience, skills and expertise of our lettings team. As members of LLAS, you can be assured that we have a detailed understanding of the lettings and management sector and will ensure that you are given the best possible service.

Over the last few years and, following the introduction of the 1988 Housing Act which offers greater protection and possession rights to Landlords, there has been resurgence in the lettings market.

People from all walks of life are looking to become involved in the rental market whether Investors, Companies, people who need to relocate with their work or homeowners who are having difficulty in selling their own properties. Increasingly, large numbers of people are entering the ‘Buy to Let’ sector as an opportunity for investment.

As a result, Landlords have come to expect extensive knowledge and expertise from the Agency they choose to act in their interests.

WHERE TO START?

1. Local lettings agent

we would suggest you find a local agent who is associated to a Trade Association such as ARLA (the Association of Residential Lettings Agents). In choosing us, you have come to the right place.

ARLA is an independent organisation solely concerned with the letting market. It ensures that its affiliated agents meet specific professional standards and fulfil other strict criteria such as provision of a separate client account for collection of clients' money and availability of a bonding scheme to protect the client in the event of misappropriation of clients' funds.

The agent may also be a member of NALS (the National Approved Letting Scheme) which is a government backed accreditation scheme providing peace of mind to both Landlord and Tenants through the knowledge that firms within NALS offer high levels of customer service.

2. Having chosen your agent, you will be required to prepare you property for rental and below we list a few guidelines to assist you

The rental market as with any other is competitive therefore, in order to obtain the best possible Tenants; you must present your property in the most effective way.

  • Interior walls should be neutral colours and carpets plain
  • Fabrics and Furnishings (if any) should be able to withstand reasonable wear and tear and be of suitable quality
  • Animals and their odours should be eliminated
  • The front door should be clean and the Entrance Hall clear of any obstructions as first impressions are important
  • The entire property should be clean and well-aired and the garden tidy.
  • If the weather is cold, heating should be turned on and, in warmer conditions, windows opened
  • For any other advice contact your Agent

3. Other important considerations for Landlords before Letting

  • Written consent must be obtained from your Mortgage Provider/Freeholder (if property is leasehold).
  • Your Insurance Company must be notified that the property is to be rented out and appropriate insurance obtained for a tenanted property. There are specialist insurance companies who can provide this and we would be happy to assist you.
  • The Inland Revenue must also be informed within 6 months of letting your property, flat or apartment in the UK and failure to do so will incur penalties, interest and other consequences. The Inland Revenue are apt to deal harshly with Landlords who do not declare rental income and it is always best to seek advice on tax planning and Capital Gains Tax from a fully qualified Accountant.
  • Mail should be redirected with the Post Office.
  • Further copies of keys will need to be provided, at least two if you have Management Agents acting for you.
  • Utilities such as gas/electricity/water/telephone & Council Tax will have to be transferred to the successful Tenant.
  • An Inventory and Check In should be drawn up. This is an important legal document which forms an integral part of the Tenancy Agreement and, as such, it is a false economy to prepare your own in most cases.

The Inventory is required whether the property to let is furnished or unfurnished and accurate descriptions of the overall condition of wall/floor coverings, kitchen and bathroom fittings to name but a few are essential. Amounts cannot be withheld from the Tenant's deposit unless the loss or damage is proved to have been caused by the Tenant.

In the event that any dispute concerning loss or damage to your property is not amicably resolved then the matter will be referred to the Courts and arbitration but should be noted that any judgement will be on the basis of written documentation – the Inventory.

4. Tenancy

The Housing Act 1988 (amended 1996) has given rise to two types of Tenancy: Assured and Assured Short hold Tenancy as well as the existing Company Tenancy and Contractual Tenancy.

A) ASSURED TENANCY

Certain criteria have to be satisfied for a tenancy to qualify for assured status. Assured Tenancy gives the Tenant security of tenure but at a market rent negotiated between the parties. The Landlord may request back possession of the property let on an Assured Tenancy but must obtain a COURT ORDER. This has its advantages but is not as flexible.

B) ASSURED SHORTHOLD TENANCY (AST)

This Tenancy is attractive to Landlords as it offers market rents without security of tenure beyond the contractual term and the majority of Tenancies are based on this format. However, certain criteria must first be met:

 a) The Tenant must be an individual
b) The property must be the Tenant's main residence/home
c) The Landlord must not occupy the same property

If the property is let under an Assured Short hold Tenancy, the Landlord can issue a Section 21 Notice to guarantee possession provided the term of the Short hold is expired and not less than two months notice has been given by the Landlord stating he requires possession.
If court action is needed, this can be obtained on a number of different grounds against the Tenant.

However, it should be noted that is a criminal offence under the Protection from Evictions Act 1977, for a Landlord to threaten or forcibly evict a Tenant from their property.

C) COMPANY TENANCY
 
This is governed by contract law and is not regulated by the Housing Acts of 1988 or 1996. It is used when a Private or Public Limited Company (excluding partnership or sole trader) want to enter into a Tenancy.
There is no security of tenure and rental payments are often made on a quarterly basis by prior agreement.

D) CONTRACTUAL TENANCY

Contractual Tenancy also falls outside the provisions of the Housing Acts of 1988 and 1996 and is not regulated by statute. It is most commonly used where the rent exceeds £25,000 per annum and both parties have the freedom to contract as they choose, but must then rely solely on the provisions of that Agreement.

5. Furnished or unfurnished

Most professional Tenants prefer the property to be unfurnished and it has been found that a Tenant is likely to respect the property more if they have their own possessions. Moreover the difference between rent for furnished or unfurnished is negligible and the Landlord remains responsible for the repair of replacement of any furnishings which become broken or worn (unless this was caused by a deliberate act of the Tenant – see Damage Deposits).

6. Marketing/Finding a tenant

You will need to decide whether you require your agent to simply market your property and find a Tenant or whether you would prefer to engage the services of their Managing Agents.

Whether you chose to opt for a Managing Agent or not, STAR ESTATES AND LETTINGS LTD as your Letting Agent will firstly provide colour property details and a rental valuation which will be based on the popularity of the area, proximity to transport, rental price of similar property handled and decorative condition to name but a few.

It is important to price your rent fairly but realistically in order to attract the most suitable Tenant.

Your rental property will be regularly advertised in the local press and publications dedicated to the letting industry as well as displayed in our offices and feature on our website and other sites such as [PORTAL LIST] to ensure maximum exposure. We also contact any listed prospective Tenants, local companies and relocation agents.

Should you decide to employ us as your Managing Agent, we will also field calls, arrange viewings, vet prospective Tenants and obtain references, draw up contracts and advise you on your Safety and Repairs obligations (see LEGAL DUTY OF CARE).

7.Full credit checking

Thorough credit checks are carried out on all prospective Tenants as we can reserve the right to decline an application where necessary in the interests of protecting the Landlord's investment.

8. References

These can be obtained through us as your Managing Agent and include references from the Tenant's employer and previous Landlord.<br>

We can also provide you with/assist you in obtaining a linked insurance policy to safeguard your rental income and provide legal protection <strong>(RENT GUARANTEE)</strong>.

9. Drafting of tenancy agreement/leases

The Letting team at [COMPANY NAME] can prepare and supply you with all legal documentation and give practical general legal advice.

10. Damage deposits

This is usually equivalent to one month's rent and is taken from the Tenant to be held in our Client Account until the end of the Tenancy. Upon vacation of your property, there will be a re-inspection and any refunds will be made within a maximum of 28 days, provided that there are no disputes and all utility accounts have been settled.

The costs of everyday repairs and maintenance are the responsibility of the Landlord but, if we are instructed to manage your property on your behalf, we will pay the contractor out of the Tenant's rent. We can also organise quotes for approval on any major repair as this becomes apparent.

Under the LANDLORD AND TENANT ACT 1985, Landlords are responsible for repair of the structure and exterior of the property, together with installations for the supply of gas, electricity, water and sanitation.

If the property is not in a good state of repair at the commencement of the Tenancy, the Tenant has the right to insist that repairs are carried out and, in the event that the damage is serious, the Tenant will be entitled to consider the letting as terminated as the Landlord will be in breach of his obligations.

11. Collection of rent

This is usually done on a calendar monthly basis and is forwarded to the Landlord via any previously approved method after any agreed deductions have been made for contractors etc.

12. Legal duty of care

Under common law, the Landlord must ensure that properties to let are safe and failure to comply with Safety Legislation is considered a criminal offence resulting in legal action and prosecution.

As your Managing Agent, we can carry out safety checks upon your request, deducting the cost from your rent.

  1. Gas – (The Gas Safety (Installation & Use) Regulations 1994 (amended 1998) – the Landlord must maintain gas installations and all gas appliances through annual inspections and safety checks carried out by a CORGI registered engineer and a copy of the Current Inspection Certificate must be left at the property.
  2. Electricity  - (The Electrical Equipment (Safety) Regulations 1994 & Electricity at Works Regulations 1989 -  the Landlord must ensure that all mains voltage household electrical appliances and equipment is tested and safe to use. Any non-repairable items must be replaced and removed.
    An NICEIC or similarly qualified electrical engineer must carry out these tests on an annual basis and we would also recommend this is done upon change of Tenancy.
    All operating instructions must be left in the property for the Tenant's benefit.
  3. Furniture and Furnishings – The Furniture and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety)Regulations 1988 (amended 1989 & 1993)  - Soft furnishings (such as mattresses, settees, bed bases, cushions and padded headboards) must meet fire resistance standards and bear a permanent  label confirming this. If compliance cannot be proved, the item must be removed and replaced.
  4. Smoke Detectors – whilst only properties built after 1992 legally require the fitting of smoke detectors (Building Regulation 1991), we would strongly recommend that smoke detectors are fitted to each floor of the property being let.

  5. NB: The penalty for failure to comply with statutory safety legislation is currently a maximum of £5,000 and/or 6 months imprisonment for each offence. This can be harsher in the case of injury or fatality.

    The above is only a guide to the legal safety requirements and should you have any further enquiries, we would recommend that you contact a qualified solicitor who will be able to verify these in full.

13. Overseas landlords

you are considered an overseas Landlord if you live abroad or go to work abroad for lengthy periods of time.

It is important to firstly note that Inland Revenue regulations apply even if you are a non-UK resident. Moreover, non-resident Landlords must apply to the Inland Revenue Financial Intermediaries Claims Office (FICO) for authorisation (by way of an exemption certificate) to receive payment of property rental “gross”, that is without deduction of Income Tax by the letting agent or Tenant as required by law.

NB: The above is merely a guideline and for fully qualified advice, you should contact an appropriate Accountant or Tax Expert.

14. Guarantee your rent

From the day we lease your property, we will guarantee your rent from 1 year to 10 years… Completely Flexible Completely your choice.

15. Payments start within 24 hours

The day we sign your property up your rent will commence the very next day.

16. 0% commission & no management fees

Our leasing service is absolutely free to landlords & Investors. Being your boroughs Preferred supplier means we don't charge you a penny throughout the term!

17. Achieve the 'highest guaranteed rent'

Star Estastes and lettings will achieve the best rent when it comes to leasing your property. Remember we do not charge you, so it is in our interest to achieve the highest rent for you.

18. No viewing or tenants to deal with

We deal with it all ! No need to deal with or time consuming viewings, appointments, reference checks or paperwork. As we guarantee the rent we take care of the whole process – absolutely free!

19.No void periods, get paid even while your property is vacant

Whether your property is occupied or vacant – either way you get paid, no rent breaks, no rent stops, just an all year round rent guarantee

20. Fast & reliable rental payments

Get paid the first Friday of every month automatically by BACS directly into your nominated account.

21. Regular inspections – Remember, we cover the cost of any damage so its in our interest to ensure your property is maintained to a high standard.

We carry out monthly inspections at all of our properties to ensure that the property still remains at a high standard. Copies of each inspection report can be emailed out to you should you wish.

22. Properties returned in original condition.

That's right. Your property is returned back in exactly the same condition you gave it to us save for any fair wear and tear.

23. No bills, no council tax and no worries.

From the minute you lease your property to Star Estastes and lettings all utility bill's and Council Tax are no longer your responsibility. We will take them over and change them in to the correct nominated name taking the hassle out of renting your property

24. Flexible Leasing – for as long as like you like.

Our guaranteed rent schemes provide you with complete flexibility of terms. Our Flexible leasing schemes give you complete control and are available from as little as 6 Months to a period of up to 10 Years. This allows you complete flexibility and choice with a GUARANTEED RENT for any period that suits you.

Brief guide to services

  • Advice on letting your property
  • Rental evaluation, provision of property details with colour photographs
  • Advertising of your rental property in local publications/on our website
  • Accompanied viewings and finding of a suitable Tenant
  • Status enquiries/reference and credit check of prospective Tenants
  • Obtaining security deposit/rent guarantee
  • Obtaining competitive quotes for insurance
  • Organising/preparing the Inventory and Check-In (additional charge)
  • Preparing Tenancy Agreement and Legal Notices
  • Arranging transfer of Utilities to Tenant's name and establishing Council Tax and Water Rates in Tenant's name
  • Advising on compliance with Safety Regulations for Gas/Electricity supplies etc.
  • Collecting monthly rental payments and providing monthly accounting to Landlords
  • Arranging annual gas safety checks (chargeable)
  • Periodic inspection of the property and reporting of any problems
  • Obtaining competitive quotations and, upon approval, arranging for necessary repairs/maintenance to be carried out
  • Contacting the Tenant and arranging for renewals and/or check-out as necessary
Quick search
    
Price
  
Bedrooms
  
Locations
  Search on map
020 _83_65 _88_77
  0