An inventory is an absolutely essential document that provides a written benchmark, which should be amended, updated and recreated before the beginning of each new tenancy.
A properly constructed Inventory/Schedule of Condition details the fixtures and fittings and describes their condition and that of the property generally. This should be a long document supported by numerous photos or video evidence and takes a while to produce accurately.
We at Cobb Amos have two fully qualified Inventory Providers (APIP) and the inventory should be seen as a necessary investment that helps protect the interests of both landlord and tenant.
All landlords must now place rental deposits in a government-backed tenancy deposit scheme if an assured shorthold tenancy agreement that started after 6 April 2007is used or in place. In England and Wales your deposit can be registered with one of three providers. At Cobb Amos we use The Tenancy Deposit Scheme
This scheme ensures that the tenant will receive their deposit back if they:
Your deposit must be placed in the scheme within 30 days of getting it, even it is it paid by someone else eg a family member on the tenant’s behalf.
The deposit must be returned within 10 days of you both agreeing how much you’ll get back. If you’re in a dispute with your landlord, then your deposit will be protected in the TDP scheme until the issue is sorted out.
These don’t have to be protected until the agreement is signed and it then forms part of the actual deposit.
Remember that payments need to be in cleared funds on the date they are due so standing orders should be set up in advance. When you first pay for your deposit, administration fee to secure the property you can pay by any method, but your application will not be secure until the funds are cleared AND we have finalised all referencing and credit checking and found everything to be satisfactory to use and our landlords. The first month’s rent you can either pay by cash on or before the day or by card / cheque at least 5 days before the rent is due. Please note that all credit card payments will have a 2.5% surcharge.
The law is clear that if you are a landlord and rent out your property (or even a room within your own home) then you have legal responsibilities to ensure the health and safety of your tenant by keeping the property safe and free from health hazards.
The risks from hot and cold water systems in most residential settings are generally considered to be low owing to regular water usage and turnover. However there is a duty to assess the risk
Property left whilst on holiday or vacant properties can often be the highest at risk, please ask Cobb Amos to help you with a risk assessment.
At Cobb Amos we use the most common form of tenancy agreement called an AST or “Assured Shorthold Tenancy” under the 1988 Housing Act (amended 1996).
This type of tenancy offers the most flexibility to both landlord and tenant; has straightforward notice procedures for bringing the tenancy to an end and a special Accelerated Possession court procedure should tenants fail to vacate.
If certain specific conditions are met relating to the proposed letting, a “contractual” non-housing act tenancy must be created. One example of this would be what is commonly referred to as a Company Let where the tenant is a bona fide registered company, another would be where the annual rent equates to over £100,000.
An “Assured” tenancy gives very significant and potentially long-term security of tenure to a tenant and, for which a landlord can only get possession in very limited circumstances.
We use our own “in-house” agreements which are more comprehensive than ones bought off the shelf, please ask if you would like to discuss any clauses