Tomorrow, 1st October is the anniversary of the introduction of a whole bunch of new regulations to hit the private rented sector (PRS). Not since the introduction of the assured shorthold tenancy (AST) has so much change affected the private residential landlord.
Our lead article this month spells out the consequences and gives some pointers as to what landlords and agents should be doing to cope with all this change. There is no doubt we have entered the age of the landlord administrator, not the casual let-and-forget variety we have become accustomed to in the past.
This is hardly likely to abate in the future, with more regulations for agents in the pipeline, the coming energy efficiency standards, where a minimum of an EPC rating “E” will be required after April 2018, and it is likely that electrical system and appliance checks will become mandatory before too long.
Two upcoming Landlord shows will be well worth a visit if you get chance: the Landlord and Letting show takes place at City Hall Cardiff on Wednesday the 12th of October, and the Landlord Investment Show will be held on Thursday the 13th at Manchester United Football Club (Old Trafford) – see more details in this issue. Get yourself along to one of these events and bring yourself up-to-date with all these latest changes.
If you are really serious about understanding the legal requirements, the 1 day workshop with barrister Sam Madge-Wyld and Tessa Shepperson – “The Easy Law Training 2016 Legal Update” – is designed to bring landlords and agents you up-to-date with all latest landlord & tenant legal changes over the past year, and as we have seen, there are plenty of them this year.
If you can’t get along to any of these events I would urge you to read some of the coverage on the legal changes in this issue and on the LandlordZONE® website – it takes a little effort to acquire new knowledge, but it will pay off in your business many times over. Remember, a bad tenancy, a tenancy gone wrong can easily cost you up to £10,000.
The best way to deal with a bad tenant is to avoid him or her in the first place and in that regard checking out your tenants using a reputable referencing agency is one of the most sensible things you can do. TenantVERIFY®, reported in this issue, has just announced the launch of its new website after many years of operation with its original website. They have also issued their recommended 20 point checklist for screening tenants, which any landlord or agent can use – a 20 Point Checklist – TenantVERIFY® Recommended Screening Checks.
It’s worth bearing in mind what Albert Einstein once said – “Any fool can know. The point is to understand.”
Good luck with your lettings.
Tom Entwistle, Editor