Let Alliance & No Letting Go collaborate to deliver fully integrated Nil Deposits

no letting go deposit scheme

No Letting Go is delighted to announce that we’re teaming up with Let Alliance to provide letting agents a nil deposit option.

This provides tenants with an alternative to the traditional deposit route, and can deliver a good commission to the agent, at a time when agents are seeking alternative income before the letting fee ban is implemented.

Find out all you need to know about the scheme below.

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Referencing and insurance specialist Let Alliance and Inventory Solution Provider No Letting Go have joined forces to help professional letting agents replace revenue that will be lost following the tenant fee ban.

Together they have developed the first fully integrated Tenant Deposit Replacement Scheme. The new proposition includes tenant referencing, Inventory software, Nil Deposit, Rent Guarantee and tenants’ liability and contents insurance.

Available exclusively to approved letting agents, the Let Alliance proposition will deliver on average £250 per property of ‘bottom line’ revenue to letting agents outside of London and an average of £350 in the London market.

The Let Alliance Nil Deposit Scheme has been in pilot since September 2017 and proved to be very successful, with tenants having the choice of a deposit replacement scheme rather than paying a 6 weeks’ rent cash deposit. Letting agents are very positive, stating that Nil Deposit enables them to provide flexibility to those tenants that may have to borrow from friends or family to fund a further 6 weeks’ deposit, particularly when a previous deposit remains tied up against their current rented property.

Andy Halstead, CEO and Founder at Let Alliance was initially sceptical about the emerging deposit replacement schemes, however extensive customer research and feedback from tenants changed his mind. Halstead said, “We are letting agents ourselves and for me nothing quite replaces the cash deposit in terms of security for landlords and a demonstration of commitment from tenants. This meant that Let Alliance needed to develop a scheme that effectively replaced a cash deposit in every way for it to have any chance of getting off the ground. We did exactly that – my team’s brief was simple; replace cash and we are onto a winner for all concerned.”

Nick Lyons, CEO and Founder of No Letting Go, has been supporting letting agents for the last 10 years with market leading Inventory Software, Kaptur and a nationwide out sourced service option. Lyons said, “I have known Andy for many years and we have developed and grown our businesses in a similar way. It makes complete sense for No Letting Go to join forces with Let Alliance and together deliver an unrivalled proposition to letting agents. Replacement Deposit Schemes cannot work in the long term unless they are fully integrated with first class, professional market leading inventory services”.

Halstead added, “Let Alliance work exclusively with letting agents and for the last 12 months our mission has been to develop a ‘Fit for The Future’ proposition that more than replaces fees that will be lost from tenants. If there was a silver bullet we would have found it. There isn’t, so partners and suppliers to letting agents need to collaborate, innovate and deliver value. If our customers thrive then so do we. For the last 7 years we have been totally committed to serving professional letting agents, and it’s just starting to get exciting. We are very proud to be at the forefront of this new service providing choice and flexibility for tenants.”

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Which Letting Agent should I choose?

 

Which letting agent should I choose

Do you have a property that you are hoping to let out? If so, you might be looking to take on a letting agent.

Whether you’re new to the world of buy-to-letting or not, you may be asking yourself ‘Which letting agent should I choose?’
To try and help, we’ve put together our advice on choosing a letting agent.

Why go with a letting agent?

While some landlords choose to manage their property alone, letting agencies are still hugely popular. Whether to choose an agency or not is down to the individual situation.

What is the role of a letting agent?

The role of a letting agent varies, depending on what you’re looking for. Their role can range from simply providing a tenancy agreement to full-on maintenance of the property.

Most letting agents will offer to collect the rent and deposit on behalf of the landlord, while many letting agents also offer extra services.
These extra services can vary from tenancy vetting’s to full-on maintenance and ensuring any damage costs are reimbursed.

 

What are the advantages of choosing a letting agent?

While a letting agent will entail fees, there are numerous advantages alongside this.

1. Firstly, letting agents will be regulated. Ensure that the one you choose is a member of a trade association, such as NAEA (National Association of Estate Agents) or ARLA (Association of Residential Letting Agents).

2. Secondly, a letting agent will have a full understanding of the buy-to-let market. If you’re a first-time landlord, it’s likely that you will benefit from this knowledge! This expertise should result in the process running more smoothly.

3. Finally, choosing a letting agent will mean that you won’t have to navigate the world of buy-to-let alone. An agency will have a dedicated team in place to manage any property related issues.

You may also like: Landlord Responsibilities – A Guide to Health & Safety Obligations

How to choose a letting agent

Once you’ve decided to go with a letting agent, it’s important to detail what service you’re looking for. There are many other factors that should go into your final decision.

You’re entrusting your property to a third party, so it’s not an easy choice to make!

Marketing and advertising

It’s important to remember that using a letting agent will cost you money.
Therefore, when considering the question ‘Which letting agent should I choose?’ you should look closely into their marketing strategy.

If their advertising is effective and they are proactive in their marketing, you will know they’re more likely to find you a tenant.

Enquire into which newspapers they advertise in.

Also, ask them to show you which potential tenants they have on their books. They should prove that they will make it their mission to see your property let out!

Listen to recommendations

An important factor in choosing a letting agent is their location. Our advice is to choose an agency in your property’s area, so you can take advantage of their local knowledge!

When choosing a letting agent, it’s important to ask around for recommendations. Listen to those who live in your area, for example other landlords, who can be found through a local landlord association.
Word-of-mouth can be a reliable source of information!

Understand their fees

You need to be clear on how an agent’s fees are organised. You don’t want to be caught out with any unexpected costs!

An agent’s fees tend to be organised either as a fixed fee, or as a proportion of rent. Fees are completely dependent on each agency itself.

One way to ensure that a letting agent is reputable is by checking that they have insurance. An agency should be able to prove they have CMP (Client Money Protection) in place.

Also, ensure that you have landlord insurance, to protect you in the unlikely event of the misappropriation of money.

In understanding an agency’s fees, you need to understand what is meant by ‘guaranteed rent’. While this sounds appealing at first, it has its drawbacks.

If an agency offers guaranteed rent, it’s likely you will receive a lower price. However, you will also avoid periods of no rent at all.
Make sure you fully consider your decision!

Check the contract

While this sounds obvious, it’s essential.
Checking the contract can help avoid some costly surprises.

You need to be clear on everything from cancellation periods, to whether there are any vacant property charges.
Aside from the fee for when new tenants move in, do they charge commission also?

Make sure you understand all the clauses within your contract.

Remember maintenance

Your letting agency should detail whether they will run safety checks, for example annual gas readings, or if this is down to you.

Consider routine repairs. Will there be any extra costs for the general maintenance of your property?

 

Being a landlord can be tough! As your property is your livelihood, we believe in protecting it. With No Letting Go inventory services, we can help you safeguard your property. Our full check-in and check-out service can ensure a hassle-free and impartial inventory check. Find out more about how we can help you here.

 

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How to Deal with Harassment in the Tenancy Process

harassment tenancy process

Whether you’re a tenant or a landlord, sadly you may have experienced some form of harassment in the tenancy process before. Whether you’re a tenant being threatened with eviction by your landlord, or a landlord with a tenant from hell; this is never a great situation to be a part of. We’ve put together some helpful advice on the types of harassment you might face in the tenancy process and how to deal with them effectively.

What Counts as Harassment?

The Equality Act 2010 defines harassment as a form of discrimination “within the work place and wider society.” Both tenants and landlords are protected by this law and any action that is not in line with the Equality Act is considered unlawful behaviour – you could even be taken to court over it. The purpose of the Equality Act 2010 is to ensure fairness, improve public services and to help with performance in businesses.

My Landlord is Harassing Me

Let’s start with the most talked about form of harassment in the tenancy process – Landlord harassment of tenants.

The most common examples of this include:

  • Cutting off the tenant’s utilities, like electricity or water
  • Landlord Trespassing – entering the property without notice or sending in other people on their behalf
  • Becoming verbally or physically abusive towards a tenant
  • Discriminating against a tenant because of their disability, race, sex or gender
  • Raising rent without notice
  • Refusing to repair vital parts of the property

Bear in mind, harassment doesn’t have to be carried out by your landlord directly. A third party, such as a letting agency or building firm, may harass tenants on behalf of the landlord. In other words, anything that results in a tenant feeling intimidated and interferes with the quality of their living conditions could qualify as a criminal offence. Let’s have a look at the best ways to deal with this and stop harassment.

Read and Read again

Rule number one: always read over the tenancy agreement carefully before signing it, in order to get a full understanding of the landlord’s responsibilities and their expectations from you once you’ve moved in. If you disagree with anything, that’s a sure sign that things could go wrong pretty quickly. Either negotiate or leave it and have a search for other properties and landlords that will be more suited to you.

Document Everything

If you’ve moved into a property and feel like you’ve been a victim of this kind of harassment, keep regular documentation of any incident that occurs between yourself and the landlord. Take note of the date and time and ask your landlord to do the same. Make sure to keep hold of anything that could be used as supporting evidence too – like emails, voicemails, letters or photos. It may also be worthwhile talking to other tenants under the same landlord to gain a better understanding of the situation you’re facing, so that you can deal with it appropriately.

Knowledge is Power, and Communication is Key

Communication skills are a must. You need to make sure you are communicating your needs clearly and avoiding any confusion that could lead to problems later on in your tenancy.

It’s important to know your rights as a tenant, but it’s also really important to become familiar with the actions your landlord is legally allowed to carry out, that are not classed as harassment, to avoid any unnecessary disagreements. These include:

  • Entering your property in an emergency – landlords are free to enter your property without notice if there is an emergency situation.
  • Raising the rent with plenty of notice – if your landlord wants to raise the price of your rent, they can do so, providing they supply you with enough notice. This is usually around 30 days.
  • Filing for eviction after a missed rent payment – if you fail to pay your rent and your landlord has already sent you notice to make the payment, they can legally file for eviction.

My Tenant is Harassing Me

The harassment of a landlord by a tenant is a much less covered topic, but nevertheless, equally as difficult. If a tenant is going out of their way to interfere with a landlord’s life and purposefully cause disruption, it should be classed as harassment and treated in the same way.

It could be that a tenant is unable to pay rent, or that they are continuously disrupting other neighbours in the building. Maybe you’ve given notice of a rent increase and they’ve now become verbally abusive. In any case, there are ways to work things out and avoid additional problems.

Carry Out Tenant Reference Checks

Before moving anyone in, it’s sensible to conduct background research and a tenant reference check on the potential tenant in order to ensure you are choosing the right person. Use the viewings as a way of “interviewing” them first to find out a bit of information about why they are looking to move. You could even get in contact with previous landlords to find out about their history of renting and their expectations as a tenant.

Document Everything

If you are experiencing problems with a tenant who has already moved in, remember to log every problem that occurs so they can be referred back to and collect as much evidence as possible. You should carry regular property inspections to get an accurate idea of how your property is being treated during the tenancy. Notice of eviction should only ever be given as a last resort, if all else has failed, but this evidence will help support your case if you do find yourself having to take this route.

Cool, Calm and Collected

Remaining calm and rational throughout a difficult tenancy is tough, but absolutely necessary. Make sure to show your face enough to let the tenant know you care. Keep in regular communication so they know they can trust you. Creating a mutual, respectful relationship between landlords and tenants can help to stop any future problems in their tracks and maintain the peace for the remainder of the tenancy.

Tenants Harassing Other Tenants

Problems between tenants can arise for an abundance of reasons. Regardless of any background checks carried out beforehand, sometimes people just don’t get along. Most of the time they’re harmless and can be sorted out quickly, with little interference from the landlord.

However, some tenant on tenant harassment disputes require a little more attention. Whether it be a tenant who can’t stand their neighbor’s choice of early morning dance music, or a tenant who is a secret parking space thief; it can be hard to know how to deal with these awkward situations without getting too involved.

Be the Mediator – not the Drama Queen

As a landlord, you need to act as the mediator in these types of circumstances without getting caught up in the drama yourself. Outlining your expectations in the tenancy agreement is a good start. You should make your tenants aware of what they need to do if they wish to make a complaint about a neighbouring tenant. Do they need to call you? Do they need to put a formal complaint in writing? Whatever method you choose, make sure to be quick on the mark in responding and chase up so that they know it is important to you.

Always Remain Neutral

You certainly do not want a tenant feeling as though you have taken sides – this will reflect badly on you and aggravate the situation even more. Being impartial to the argument allows you to put forward an ‘outsider’s’ opinion that could sway the disagreement towards reconciliation.

Intervening Should Be the Last Resort

You should only even intervene if you absolutely NEED to. If the argument is getting out of hand or becoming a safety concern and you’ve done all you can on your own, you will need to think about taking legal action or asking for legal advice.

 

If you’re a landlord or a tenant wanting to avoid getting caught up in a chaotic tenancy process, we’re here to help. Check out No Letting Go’s inventory services for more information.

 

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No Letting Go Supporting Mandatory Landlord Inventories

Supporting Mandatory Landlord Inventories

No Letting Go are proud to support the Association of Independent Inventory Clerks (AIIC) in their bid for mandatory inventories for all private residential tenancies. An independent inventory ensures there’s no room for ambiguity during the check-in and check-out procedures – this dramatically reduces the number of deposit disputes.

Evidence of Fulfilled Landlord Obligations

We would like to go a step further. We feel inventories should be combined with compliance reporting. A detailed inventory at the start and end of a tenancy can act as a crucial document which acts as evidence of a landlord fulfilling their health and safety obligations.

The report could also work as evidence of a landlord complying with:

  • Smoke and carbon monoxide alarm regulations 2015
  • Fire and furnishing safety regulations 1988

A Duty of Care

Nick Lyons, CEO of No Letting Go spoke to Landlord Today regarding the topic:

“Independent inventory providers have a duty of care to protect the interests of both landlords and tenants alike. The government has introduced legislation to protect tenants but with no real effective means to monitor it.

“The introduction of a compulsory combined inventory and compliance report for all let properties compiled by trained, independent professionals will help ensure that landlords meet their legal responsibilities and assist the government and trading standards to police the landlord’s requirement to protect tenants.”

Why Is the Petition Important?

The petition is being put forward by the AIIC. This is to encourage the government to introduce mandatory inventory reporting as part of its ongoing plans to increase regulation in the Private Rented Sector.

The AIIC sees mandatory independent inventory reporting as the next step from the 2007 introduction of compulsory tenancy deposit protection. This is because there’s not been additional legislation concerning the documents or evidence needed to resolve deposit disputes.

Danny Zane, joint chair of the AIIC explains:

“With this in mind, regulating independent inventories really is a no-brainer for the government. An independent and professionally compiled inventory offers protection to both tenants and landlord and can prove invaluable in the event of a tenancy deposit dispute.”

Irrelevant of whether mandatory independent inventory reporting becomes a legal requirement, there is still an abundance of benefits for landlords, letting agents and tenants. An independent body like No Letting Go can take the hassle and strain out of the process while dramatically cutting down on disputes. Find out more about how we can help your inventory process here.

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Factors to Consider When Choosing a Property Inventory App

Property Inventory Apps

Many agents conduct their own property reporting, and are looking to technology to make this quicker and more efficient. There are a number of mobile property inventory apps available on the market, but they’re not all the same. So, what should you look for?

Feedback from letting agents indicate there are 3 critical factors to considering when choosing inventory system to enhance their property reporting.

1. Saving Time

Reducing inventory time is key, but you need to scrutinise how this is achieved with an app.  You don’t want to save time at the expense of detail.  After all, the aim is to avoid disputes through data and detail.

  • Does the technology eliminate additional re-typing
  • Is there an extensive pre-populated glossary of words and phrases
  • Can you instantly add photos into the report without a separate download
  • Does the check out report automatically bring up and compare the check in items
  • Can the report be produced on-site
  • Can the report be sent straight into the management suite for issue and storage
  • Does the management suite allow jobs to be booked, allocated, tracked & invoiced for multiple clerks and offices

2. Safeguard Compliance Management

Reporting has become critical in recording and managing compliance requirements such as smoke & carbon monoxide legislation & fire & furnishing regulations.

  • How does the system record these items
  • How does the system ensure reports remain consistent
  • How does it deal with specifying cleanliness categories to minimize subjectivity
  • What differential is made between cleanliness and condition
  • How thorough is the audit trail for each report

3. The ability to manage seasonal business levels

Some agents like to conduct reporting in-house, but to outsource to an external inventory specialist during busy periods to manage seasonal business levels.

  • Can the system accommodate in-house & outsource reporting at a click of a button
  • Will the reporting and storage remain consistent

It’s important to research who produces the app. Is the company established in the market with a working knowledge of property reporting? Moreover, what training options do they provide?

Kaptur is an app and management suite, designed using the very latest tablet technology to save professionals in the property sector time and money. Find out how you can collect, prepare, report and manage information with Kaptur here.

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A Beginner’s Guide to the Types of Tenancy Agreement

types of tenancy agreement

Whether you’re a landlord or tenant, it’s important to know about the different types of tenancy agreements currently used in the UK. This will help you understand what your rights are and which is most applicable to your situation. Here’s everything you need to know.

What is a Tenancy Agreement?

In short, a tenancy agreement is a document which outlines the terms of tenancy for a particular property. Whether you’re renting yourself or letting a property, it’s essential to ensure there’s a written tenancy agreement signed by both parties.

Here are the most common types of tenancy agreement found in the UK:

  • Assured shorthold tenancy (AST)
  • Assured shorthold tenancy – room only
  • Excluded tenancy
  • Assured tenancy
  • Non-assured tenancy
  • Company let

Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement

An Assured Shorthold Tenancy (AST) is the most common form of tenancy agreement found in the UK. The majority of tenancies on the rental market will be ASTs.

This agreement is used for houses and flats where the entire building is being let out to one tenant or group of tenants where the property is their main home. For instance, if a family or group of friends are renting out a property together, an AST will most likely be used. This isn’t always the case for properties where individual rooms are let out separately. This type of tenancy is not used for lets where the landlord lives in the property too.

As a landlord, the Section 21 notice procedure allows you to obtain possession. Furthermore, if a tenant is in arrears, this type of agreement gives you the power to serve a Section 8 notice.

Often an AST will come with an initial fixed term of 6-12 months. During this time a tenant can’t leave the property without good cause. There may be a break clause written into the contract which allows for an early exit. After the initial fixed term is over, the contract becomes periodic on a monthly rolling basis.

Landlords using this form of agreement are required to protect their tenant’s deposit in an approved deposit protection scheme.

The tenancy isn’t an AST if:

  • It began before 15th January 1989
  • Rent comes to more than £100,000 per annum
  • Rent is less than £250 a year – this becomes £1,000 in London
  • It’s a business tenancy
  • It’s a tenancy of licenced premises
  • It’s a holiday let
  • The landlord is a local council

Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement – Room Only

This is very similar to the AST agreement mentioned above. Though this agreement is more suited to tenants who are only renting one room in a shared property or a bedsit. This agreement will be for the room and access to shared facilities.

All other aspects of the agreement remain the same as the AST mentioned above.

Excluded Tenancy Agreement

This is also known as a lodger’s agreement. This type of accommodation is used when a landlord shares the property with a tenant. This agreement doesn’t give the lodger the same rights as an AST would. As long as proper notice is given (as specified in the agreement), a tenant can be evicted without a court order. With this type of agreement, a landlord isn’t required to protect the tenant’s deposit in a protection scheme.

This agreement can only be used if the property is actually shared with the landlord. Sharing a door isn’t enough. Facilities like kitchen and bathrooms must be shared.

christopher-harris-55545

Assured Tenancy Agreement

An Assured Tenancy Agreement (not to be confused with an Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement) is uncommon in modern renting. These were commonplace in the 90s and gave tenants long-term rights. These are now most commonly used by housing associations.

Non-Assured Tenancy Agreement

As mentioned before, there are some specific circumstances where a rental can’t be an AST. When this is the case, they often become a non-assured tenancy. This is most often found when the rent is less than £250 per year (£1,000 in London) or the property is not the tenant’s main home. This agreement can also be used when the landlord lives in the same property but doesn’t share facilities.

The differences between this and an AST are mainly eviction and deposits. A landlord doesn’t have to use a deposit protection scheme. Also, a Section 8 or Section 21 notice isn’t required to be served if a landlord wants to remove the tenant from the property. Having said this, in Non-Assured rentals the tenant has the right to live in the property until the fixed term is up (on the condition, they adhere to the terms of the agreement).

Company Let Agreement

This type of agreement is uncommon in homes. This type of agreement is applicable when the tenant is a company, not an individual. This means the rules and processes change. Deposits don’t need to be protected and you aren’t required to serve a Section 21 or Section 8 notice – a simple ‘notice to quit’ is often sufficient.

Tenancy Agreement or Licence Agreement?

You may not have a tenancy agreement at all. The document you’re signing could be a licence agreement. This won’t give you as many rights when it comes to eviction. Often the stipulations of the agreement will be fair and just though they do need close consideration.

A landlord cannot choose which type of agreement they use – this is defined by law. Remember, the tenancy or licence agreement cannot reduce a tenant’s legal rights. It’s worth reading up on what these are.

A licence agreement is often used for short-term occupation or on properties where the licensee doesn’t have exclusive occupation of the property. This can be frequently found in shared accommodation.

Don’t Forget the Inventory

Whichever type of tenancy you have, it’s important to ensure the agreement mentions the inventory check-in and out procedure. For landlords, the easiest way of managing this is to use an inventory service provider like No Letting Go.

We will visit the property at the start of the tenancy to run a full inventory with accurate pictures and notes. We will then visit again at the end to do the same. This impartial and highly detailed approach removes any ambiguity leading to deposit disputes. Find out more about No Letting Go’s Inventory services here.

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Visit No Letting Go at The National Franchise Exhibition – 13 – 14th October

national franchise show

No Letting Go is pleased to announce that we’ll be exhibiting at the National Franchise Exhibition on Friday 13th and Saturday 14th of October. The event will take place at the NEC in Hall 3a and is one of the biggest Franchise events in the UK. You’ll find us at stand B60 at 10am – 5pm on Friday and 10am – 4pm on Saturday where we’ll be talking about the lucrative opportunities that await in property inventory.

There will be brands from a wide range of sectors offering advice on how to become a franchisee. All brands have been proved to be ethical and viable by the British Franchise Association (BFA) the industry’s governing body who also sponsor the event. There will also be over 40 free presentations and free business skills workshops available for you to gain some inspiration!

So, if you are an entrepreneur excited by the idea of running your own business in the property inventory sector, come and say hello to the No Letting Go team! We’re always on the look-out for franchisees to join us in one of the UK’s fastest growing sectors!

Becoming a No Letting Go Franchisee could be the opportunity you’ve been waiting for, so come down and say hello at the National Franchise Exhibition and check out our franchise site for more information.

Use code NEC1 to get your free tickets online here.

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End of Tenancy Advice & Guidance for Landlords

house tenancy

So, the tenancy has come to an end – hopefully for amicable reasons. This is a time which needs to be closely managed. There’s a lot which could potentially go wrong. Thankfully, there are a few steps you can take as a landlord to ensure the end of tenancy is as seamless as possible. Here’s some essential end of tenancy advice and guidance for landlords.

Book a Check-Out Procedure

The check-out procedure is vital for ensuring your property is left in the condition your tenant found it. By using an impartial body, deposit disputes are stopped in their tracks. We’ll take into consideration damage caused by tenants as well as what would usually be considered wear and tear. We’ll compare this with the original check-in report to come to a fair agreement on deposit deductions.

Once you’ve received confirmation the tenant is leaving, book a check-out inspection. Ensure the tenant understands the property must be in an acceptable state for handover. Invite the tenant to take part in the check-out inspection.

Giving Notice of Viewings

It’s likely you’ve mentioned this in the tenancy agreement. As soon as your tenant gives notice of leave, you should start advertising your property. If stated in the tenancy agreement, it’s okay to offer viewings to prospective tenants. Be sure to give appropriate notice to the current tenant. Never turn up at the property unannounced.

Keep in Regular Contact with the Tenant

It’s important your tenant understands the full process of leaving your property. This will include reminding them of specifics previously mentioned in the tenancy agreement:

  • Door and window keys, fobs and parking permits must be returned
  • A new address for the tenant must be provided to help with the deposit return
  • Standing orders should be cancelled
  • Any outstanding rent should be paid in full
  • Utility accounts paid off and closed

It’s also worth reminding the tenant of the condition you expect to find the property in. This can include:

  • Rubbish removed from the property
  • Any furniture belonging to the tenant should be removed
  • Fridges and freezers should be emptied, cleaned, defrosted and turned off
  • Any other appliances should be emptied, cleaned and unplugged
  • The garden and external areas should be an acceptable standard
  • The property should be cleaned
  • All belongings must be removed

All of this must be done before the check-out inspection takes place.

Deposit Deductions

So, what’s fair when it comes to deposit deductions?

If the check-out procedure isn’t satisfactory, it may be worth giving the tenant the opportunity to put things right. This can include some last minute cleaning, gardening or repairs.

If the tenant is unable to come up with a quick fix to the problems found, it’s time to calculate deposit deductions. Start by getting quotes from professional services needed to rectify any issues, e.g. deep cleaning, decoration, etc.

It’s important to add in any other breaches to the tenancy agreement, as well as any outstanding rent arrears.

Negotiating the Deposit Return

Now you know what deductions you’d like to make to the deposit, it’s time to inform the tenant.

Send an in-depth letter or email discussing all issues and deductions you’ve made. This can naturally be a difficult process. We’d recommend having a conversation with the tenant to explain the situation as well as sending a written record of your deductions. Try to be as open and approachable as possible during this process. Do this as early as possible.

This is where the importance of an impartial check-out procedure really counts. If the tenant understands the issues, there’s less chance of fiery disputes.

Any deposit balance held by the landlord which isn’t being disputed must be returned to the tenant within 10 days. You have the right to hold back any amount which is under dispute. If disputes can’t be resolved, you may need to seek assistance from a third party.

If the claim you’re making comes to more than the deposit amount, it may be worth seeking legal action.

Take the Stress Away

The end of a tenancy can be a stressful time for both landlord and tenant. A poorly completed inventory at the start of the tenancy can lead to a serious headache at the end. The last thing anyone wants is a deposit dispute.

Take the stress of the situation away by using No Letting Go’s inventory services. We’ll visit your property for a full professional check-in procedure and will do the same upon check-out. This cuts disputes dramatically and will let you focus on what really matters – getting new tenants. Find out more about our inventory services here.

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The Best Landlord Insurance Providers

best landlord insurance providers

Landlord insurance can be a hassle. As with picking any insurance provider, it can be tricky to tell whether you’re getting the best deal. Whether you’re fresh-faced with a young property portfolio or a seasoned pro craving the best value, we can help. Here’s our guide to the best landlord insurance providers.

Note: The ratings found below are taken from customer reviews and are accurate at time of publishing.

Types of Landlord Insurance

Before we get started, it’s worthwhile knowing how to differentiate between the different types of landlord insurance. There are three main forms of protection:

  • Buildings insurance
  • Contents insurance
  • Liability insurance

Buildings Insurance

This covers any problems or damage the building itself suffers. This is all about the structure of your property. Flood, fire and repairs are all generally covered in buildings insurance.

Contents Insurance

This covers damage to goods inside the property, from furniture to kitchenware, technology or even carpets. Landlord contents insurance is vital to those renting out furnished properties. Be aware, this doesn’t cover your tenant’s belongings – they’ll need a separate plan.

Liability Insurance

This will look after you if someone is hurt or injured inside the property and claims it’s your fault.

Added Extras

Beyond these three standard forms of protections, there are some added extras that are offered:
Rent guarantee – you get rent even if your tenants can’t pay
Legal expenses – if you have legal disputes with tenants, this will cover the costs
Home emergency – the covers the cost of quick emergency repairs

So, what are the best landlord insurance providers?

 

AXA (4.6/5)

What’s included as standard:

  • Liability cover
  • Buildings insurance
  • Cover to re-house tenants in alternative accommodation
  • Up to 10 properties in one policy
  • Cables and underground pipes
  • Subsidence, ground heave and landslip

Optional extras:

  • Accidental damage cover
  • Loss of rental income
  • Contents cover
  • Employer’s liability insurance
  • Terrorism cover

Saga (5/5)

What’s included as standard:

  • Buildings cover up to £500,000
  • Contents cover up to £50,000
  • Accidental damage cover
  • Malicious damage or vandalism cover
  • Alternative accommodation cover
  • Legal expenses cover
  • Landlord advice line
  • 10% multi-property discount

Optional extras:

  • Home emergence cover
  • Rent guarantee cover

Direct Line Landlord Insurance (4.5 /5)

Direct Line guarantee to beat the renewal premium or quote of any other insurer for your first policy (new customers only).
What’s included as standard:

  • Buildings insurance cover
  • New-for-old contents insurance
  • Boiler breakdown cover
  • Glass and locks replacement
  • Legal documents service
  • Free 24/7 legal helpline
  • Access to specialist claims handler
  • Public liability up to £2m
  • Tenant re-housing costs covered
  • Multi-property discount

Optional extras:

  • Legal expenses cover
  • Rent guarantee
  • Accidental damage
  • Employer’s liability
  • Theft by tenant cover
  • Loss of rent cover
  • Malicious damage by tenants cover

Intasure Landlord’s Buy to Let (4.6/5)

What’s included as standard:

  • Buildings
  • Loss of Rent and Alternative Accommodation Expenses
  • Property Owners Liability
  • Accidental Damage cover included as standard

Optional extras:

  • Contents of Residential Units
  • Rent guarantee
  • Keycare
  • Legal Expenses

Let Alliance Landlords Insurance (3.6/5)

What’s included as standard:

  • NIL Excess
  • Up to £500,000 buildings sum insured as standard (up to £2 million on request)
  • Buildings Accidental Damage
  • Legal Liability cover up to £5 million
  • Trace and Access up to £5,000
  • Malicious & Accidental Damage by tenant option
  • Up to 20% Loss of Rent
  • Up to 90 days Un-occupancy
  • Contents cover up to £50,000
  • Theft of Keys & Replacement Locks
  • Nil Excess Home Emergency cover option (unlimited claims)

Optional extras:

  • Rent guarantee
  • Accidental damage

 

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Alan Boswell Group (4.8/5)

What’s included as standard:

  • ‘All risks’ material loss or damage to buildings and/or contents
  • No extra charge to include occupation by students and Housing Benefit tenants at no extra charge
  • Cover for rehousing a tenant after insured damage to the property
  • Loss of rent cover for up to 30% of the building sum insured
  • Property Owners’ Liability cover up to £5,000,000 indemnity any one incident (restricted to £2,000,000 for terrorism)
  • Employers’ Liability cover up to £10,000,000
  • Cover for unoccupied properties up to 60 days from being first insured

Optional extras:

  • Rent guarantee
  • Accidental damage
  • Buildings and Contents Insurance
  • Landlord Legal Insurance

NatWest Landlords Insurance (4.8/5)

What’s included as standard:

  • Buildings Insurance cover
  • Public Liability and Property Owners Liability cover up to 2m
  • Breakdown cover on your boiler when buildings insured
  • New-for-old contents cover
  • Re-house tenants following an insured event e.g. fire or flood (subject to policy limits)
  • Free 24/7 legal helpline
  • Malicious damage cover

Optional extras:

  • Increase Public Liability and Property Owners Liability cover up to 5m
  • Accidental damage for Buildings and/or Contents when insured
  • Loss of Rent cover if property becomes inhabitable following an insured event e.g. flood or fire
  • Legal expenses cover up to 250,000
  • Subsidence cover

Churchill Landlords Insurance (4.8/5)

What’s included as standard:

  • Buy-to-let insurance
  • Contents insurance
  • Buildings insurance
  • Landlord boiler cover

Optional extras:

  • Liability cover
  • Loss of rent cover
  • Multi property cover
  • Employers’ Liability Cover
  • Legal expenses cover
  • Terrorism cover

MORE TH>N Landlords Insurance (Online) (4.4/5)

What’s included as standard:

  • 24/7 legal/health and safety/advice helpline
  • Up to 5m Public Liability cover
  • Malicious damage cover caused by tenants
  • Loss of rent following insured event

Optional extras:

  • Upgrade contents cover to 5,000, 10,000, 25,000, 50,000
  • Upgrade home emergency including boiler breakdown for £50
  • Upgrade public liability to 5m for potential claims

Simple Landlords Insurance (4.4/5)

What’s included as standard:

  • Buildings Insurance
  • Contents Insurance
  • Legal Liability
  • Alternative accommodation and loss of rent
  • Accidental and malicious damage

Optional extras:

  • Emergency cover
  • Excess protection
  • Key protection
  • Rent guarantee
  • Legal expenses cover

Landlords, don’t be caught out! Protect your property against damages with No Letting Go’s inventory services.

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The Best Place to Invest in Property UK

The Best Place to Invest in Property UK

If you fancy turning your hand to property investment but unsure where to start, we’ve got it covered. We’ve taken a look at the best place to invest in property in the UK. To work this out, we’ve looked at the average rental yield all UK cities and ranked them accordingly. We’ve worked this out by looking at the average property value and average annual rent in each city. Where does your city rank?

Ranked from bottom to top by average rental yield percentage, here are the results…

68. St Albans – 2.76%

Average property price: £581,041
Average rent: £1,336 pcm

67. Truro – 2.85%

Average property price: £320,611
Average rent: £761 pcm

66. Worcester – 2.87%

Average property price: £260,039
Average rent: £623 pcm

65. Chelmsford – 3.04%

Average property price: £387,413
Average rent: £982 pcm

64. Salisbury – 3.08%

Average property price: £341,338
Average rent: £876 pcm

63. St Asaph – 3.1%

Average property price: £225,104
Average rent: £581 pcm

62. Hereford – 3.14%

Average property price: £249,947
Average rent: £655 pcm

61. Ripon – 3.2%

Average property price: £290,495
Average rent: £774 pcm

60. Lichfield – 3.2%

Average property price: £291,353
Average rent: £777 pcm

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59. Wells – 3.31%

Average property price: £308,536
Average rent: £850 pcm

58. Cambridge – 3.34%

Average property price: £455,104
Average rent: £1,268 pcm

57. Winchester – 3.36%

Average property price: £548,755
Average rent: £1,537 pcm

56. Chichester – 3.4%

Average property price: £428,867
Average rent: £1,214 pcm

55. Wolverhampton – 3.44%

Average property price: £188,146
Average rent: £539 pcm

54. Bath – 3.44%

Average property price: £444,257
Average rent: £1,274 pcm

53. Gloucester – 3.47%

Average property price: £230,997
Average rent: £668 pcm

52. Chester – 3.5%

Average property price: £254,681
Average rent: £742 pcm

51. Perth – 3.5%

Average property price: £202,679
Average rent: £591 pcm

50. Exeter – 3.52%

Average property price: £293,069
Average rent: £860 pcm

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49. York – 3.55%

Average property price: £282,874
Average rent: £837 pcm

48. St David’s – 3.56%

Average property price: £234,104
Average rent: £695 pcm

47. Peterborough – 3.7%

Average property price: £217,668
Average rent: £672 pcm

46. Carlisle – 3.73%

Average property price: £157,070
Average rent: £488 pcm

45. Ely – 3.8%

Average property price: £295,045
Average rent: £935 pcm

44. Norwich – 3.9%

Average property price: £265,871
Average rent: £864 pcm

43. Leicester – 4.01%

Average property price: £216,421
Average rent: £724 pcm

42. Bristol – 4.03%

Average property price: £314,629
Average rent: £1,057 pcm

41. Canterbury – 4.07%

Average property price: £335,782
Average rent: £1,138 pcm

40. Lincoln – 4.07%

Average property price: £192,423
Average rent: £653 pcm

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39. Wakefield – 4.08%

Average property price: £177,810
Average rent: £605 pcm

38. Derby – 4.12%

Average property price: £194,951
Average rent: £669 pcm

37. Lancaster – 4.25%

Average property price: £191,729
Average rent: £679 pcm

36. Dundee – 4.28%

Average rental price: £156,781
Average rent: £559 pcm

35. Southampton – 4.36%

Average rental price: £289,546
Average rent: £1,053 pcm

34. Hull – 4.43%

Average rental price: £133,306
Average rent: £492 pcm

33. Newry – 4.44%

Average rental price: £146,353
Average rent: £542 pcm

32. Oxford – 4.46%

Average property price: £503,570
Average rent: £1,870 pcm

31. Stoke-on-Trent – 4.53%

Average property price: £143,358
Average rent: £541 pcm

30. Bradford – 4.53%

Average property price: £129,444
Average rent: £489 pcm

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29. Aberdeen – 4.58%

Average property price: £197,352
Average rent: £753 pcm

28. Preston – 4.6%

Average property price: £179,405
Average rent: £687 pcm

27. Inverness – 4.68%

Average property price: £177,736
Average rent: £693 pcm

26. Newport – 4.71%

Average property price: £165,970
Average rent: £651 pcm

25. Stirling – 4.78%

Average property price: £194,439
Average rent: £775 pcm

24. Brighton & Hove – 4.79%

Average property price: £385,220
Average rent: £1,537 pcm

23. London – 4.8%

Average property price: £672,390
Average rent: £2,692 pcm

22. Newcastle – 4.81%

Average property price: £203,524
Average rent: £816 pcm

21. Sheffield – 4.91%

Average property price: £187,360
Average rent: £767 pcm

20. Sunderland – 5.02%

Average property price: £139,518
Average rent: £584 pcm

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19. Derry – 5.12%

Average property price: £110,884
Average rent: £473 pcm

18. Glasgow – 5.21%

Average property price: £175,623
Average rent: £762 pcm

17. Lisburn – 5.36%

Average property price: £143,435
Average rent: £641 pcm

16. Plymouth – 5.47%

Average property price: £200,655
Average rent: £914 pcm

15. Cardiff – 5.6%

Average property price: £233,833
Average rent: £1,092 pcm

14. Belfast – 5.72%

Average property price: £153,310
Average rent: £731 pcm

13. Swansea – 5.74%

Average property price: £167,147
Average rent: £799 pcm

12. Liverpool – 5.78%

Average property price: £164,838
Average rent: £794 pcm

11. Portsmouth – 5.81%

Average property price: £227,041
Average rent: £1,100 pcm

10. Edinburgh – 5.89%

Coming in at 10th place is Scotland’s capital Edinburgh. The city is a highly desirable place to live and is a huge cultural hub north of the border. Having said this, property prices are relatively low while rent remains high. This means, Edinburgh is a great place for any landlord to build a portfolio.
Average property price: £268,989
Average rent: £1,320 pcm

9. Nottingham – 5.97%

With a popular university paired with high standard of living, property investment in Nottingham could be a money maker. With a 5.97% average rental yield, this is a serious consideration for anyone looking to make money.
Average property price: £188,609
Average rent: £939 pcm

8. Birmingham – 6.27%

Proclaimed to be the second city in the UK, Birmingham was guaranteed to feature high in this list. The property prices are in line with much of the midlands while rent is high. The popular university also prevents an opportunity for those considering student lets.
Average property price: £188,235
Average rent: £984 pcm

7. Armagh – 6.42%

The Northern Irish city is claimed to be the fifth-least-populous city in the UK. Maybe that goes some way to explaining the low property prices. Rent, at least, is in line with the surrounding area.
Average property price: £105,815
Average rent: £566 pcm

6. Manchester – 6.5%

Though Birmingham takes the title of Britain’s second city, Manchester seems to be stealing the attention. It’s a highly favourable place to live, especially among the younger generations who seek a buzzy metropolitan area. This has led to rent remaining high while property prices sit in line with much of the north of England.
Average property price: £175,872
Average rent: £952 pcm

5. Coventry – 6.64%

Coventry storms ahead into 5th position in our list. As the ninth largest city in the UK, it’s no surprise it features high. The city is the only Midlands spot to break the £1,000 average rent mark.
Average property price: £195,255
Average rent: £1,080 pcm

4. Durham – 6.71%

At the business end of the list we find north-eastern city of Durham. The location is renowned for its beauty and highly respected university. There are plenty of reasons why people are attracted to the city, an alluring potential for investment.
Average property price: £159,146
Average rent: £890 pcm

3. Leeds – 6.89%

Another city that people are naturally driven to. Leeds is metropolitan city renowned for its shopping, nightlife and culture. If you consider the high rent prices and relatively low property prices, you may find yourself building a portfolio here.
Average property price: £204,644
Average rent: £1,175 pcm

2. Salford – 7.53%

If you’re looking to invest in Manchester, you may do better by looking to neighbouring Salford. The city offers similar average rent but with a reduction in average property prices, a win-win!
Average property price: £156,118
Average rent: £979 pcm

1. Bangor – 9.42%

The best place to invest in property in the UK is Bangor – an exceptional opportunity for anyone considering property investment. The house prices are aligned with the local area and pretty low. The average rent is considerably higher, exceeding £1,300 pcm.
Average property price: £169,148
Average rent: £1,328 pcm

All figures accurate on date of publish.

If you’re considering becoming a landlord, don’t get caught up in messy deposit disputes. We can help. Find out how No Letting Go’s inventory services can remove the hassle from the situation.

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