6 law-breaking mistakes landlords keep making

6 law-breaking mistakes landlords keep making

If having over 170 regulations and legislation for landlords to follow wasn’t enough, the rules are constantly changing.

It’s no wonder that many landlords struggle to stay compliant, and are making mistakes without even knowing.  At The Apartment Company we always support our landlords, minimising the overwhelm to ensure that you and your property are doing everything right.  If the maze of dos and don’ts confuses you, we have put together six law-breaking mistakes that landlords keep making.
1. Gas Safety
You may be under the impression that if you have a Gas Safety certificate for your boiler then your property is covered – this is not the case.  The Gas Safety regulations require you to have a certificate for each gas appliance within your property, and these must also be available inside the property.
2. Right to rent
In 2016 it became a legal requirement for English landlords to check the immigration status of each prospective tenant to make sure that they legally have a right to rent.  If the correct checks are not completed the penalty is an unlimited fine and up to five years in prison. 
3.  Deposit protection
We have come across a misunderstanding by self-managing landlords who believe that they can still hold unregistered or unprotected deposits – this is prevented under the 2004 Housing Act. If the tenancy is an assured shorthold tenancy (AST), then your tenant’s deposit must be held within a government-approved deposit protection scheme.
4. The Tenant Fees Act
It has been all over the press, yet we still meet landlords who are not aware of the changes that are coming into force as of 1 June this year.  The refundable deposit will be capped to no more than five weeks’ rent should the annual rent be below £50,000.
5.  Correct information
Whether you are self-managing or using a letting agent, your tenant is entitled to receive all your details as the landlord.  This includes your full name and address, together with who they should contact regarding the management of the property.  Not only this, your tenants must also receive a copy of the Government’s Guide – How to Rent, which gives lots of practical advice.
6. Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)
Last year it became unlawful to let a property that has an EPC below an E.  Even though this change has been in place for over 12 months it seems to have passed some landlords by without notice.  Failing to comply could see you receiving a penalty up to £4,000.  We continue to advise our landlords to future-proof their properties, as this EPC minimum is expected to rise again soon.
We can understand how, as a landlord, a new change in legalisation can pass you by if your properties are not your main focus. This is why Nicola Wilkes, our Lettings Manager and compliance expert, works closely with each and every one of our landlords, making sure they are abreast of any new changes so that they and their properties remain compliant.
Are you struggling to understand your responsibilities as a landlord?  Give Nicola a call on 01225 303870.


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