There is a lot said about so-called ‘landlords from hell’; newspapers publish features of bullying landlords and television stations run shows all about the plight of tenants.
However, what about the other side of the rental agreement?
Tenants can be troublesome too; in fact, there are more disruptive tenants out there than there are bad landlords. There are dozens of articles online advising tenants of their rights and how to protect themselves from landlords, yet there is virtually nothing on how landlords can protect themselves from tenants – how a landlord inventory and insurance can be used to give a property owner protection.
In this post, we are siding with the landlord and looking at how you can protect yourself from troubling tenants.
As a landlord renting out a property to tenants is largely based upon trust. While references can be sought and background checks can be done to try to determine the history and character of a tenant, ultimately you put your trust in them to respect the property and look after it during their stay.
One of the rights that a landlord must provide a tenant is to allow them to live undisturbed in a property. Unfortunately, the tenant can often abuse this right and your property could be being dismantled without your knowledge. A tenant could be knocking down walls, selling appliances or renting out a spare room without your knowledge. To protect yourself from any such instances, it is advisable to have landlord insurance in place.
Given that you must keep a property in a good state of repair at all times, landlord insurance is pretty useful to have anyway – covering you for damages and any rent that is lost due to repairs being carried out.
In the event of a dispute with a tenant, landlord insurance will also cover legal expenses – both in the event of a tenant taking action against you and you attempting to evict a tenant.
Landlord insurance is based upon the cost of a home being rebuilt in the event that it is completely destroyed, therefore you should consider the building sum insured (BSI) factor and include the actual cost of the build, clearance costs, and surveyor fees when calculating how much insurance you need. Complete landlord insurance should include:
Since the Tenancy Deposit Scheme (TDS) scheme was launched back in 2007, landlords are required to protect the deposit of a tenant through a government-backed scheme. This has meant landlords and no longer able to control a deposit and tenants have more power to challenge the withholding of their money. Backed by this scheme, more and more tenants are taking on landlords even when they know they are in the wrong – the only way to protect yourself from this is with a landlord inventory.
An inventory is a detailed report of the contents and condition of a property. This document contains written and visual evidence of everything related to a property and must be signed by both landlord and tenant, forming part of the legally binding tenancy agreement contract.
A landlord inventory should be carried out just before a tenancy starts and just before a tenancy ends and offers a hassle free way to assess any damages and decide what, if anything, should be paid for out of a deposit. If you are worried about how tenants may be treating a property, it is advisable to also carry out a landlord inventory during the tenancy.
Remember, when it comes to a tenancy, it is your property and your investment and you should do everything you can to protect it. A landlord inventory and landlord insurance are both reccomended but it also helps finding the right tenants in the first place with online services such as Rentonomy and Upad helping landlords do just that.
Photo source – flickr: Chris Potter
A new year brings with it fresh opportunities to maximise the potential of your property portfolio and grow your business. It also brings new changes to the private rental sector. So, what will the rental sector look like in 2020? And how can landlords, letting agents and property professionals keep abreast of changing regulations? Our [...]READ MORE
With the festive period in full swing and New Year’s Eve celebrations on the horizon, many student landlords are bracing themselves for that dreaded call from a disgruntled neighbour in the early hours of the morning. It’s no secret that lots of students like to party, and if not managed correctly, related disputes can create [...]READ MORE
Thinking of investing in Build to Rent but not sure how to go about it or if it’s right for you? Our guide on why to invest in Build to Rent explores the risks and rewards of getting involved in the sector. Build to Rent developments are growing across the UK thanks to higher demand [...]READ MORE
Finding a reliable removal company can be a challenge, and tenants often turn to their landlord or letting agent for advice at the end of a tenancy. Providing quality recommendations for trusted tradespeople and services builds trust with tenants and means they’re more likely to pass on your details to friends and family. In order [...]READ MORE