Landlord guidelines

What we can do for you

  • Arrange to meet at the property to be let at a time convenient to you. Even evening appointments, Saturdays and Sundays
  • You must have a smoke detector on every level of your property in working order prior to a tenant moving in. You must also provide a Carbon Monoxide detector if you have any solid fuel burners in your property.
  • Advise you on a professional letting rental valuation, taking into consideration your personal circumstances and the current lettings market in Sussex to gain you the best possible rental
  • Guide you through all the current legislation to ensure you let your home within the law and suggest ways to prepare your home for your new tenants
  • We market on our website, Primelocation, Findaproperty. Globrix, PropertyLive, Facebook, Twitter and in the local press in East and West Sussex
  • We accompany all letting viewings and are available to fit around our applicants so can do evenings or all over the weekend
  • Fully reference your prospective tenants and discuss our findings with you
  • Arrange for a detailed inventory, schedule of condition and check in including photographs by a professional inventory clerk
  • Draw up a detailed Tenancy Agreement relevant to you and your requirements
  • Collect a deposit from your tenants normally one and a half times the monthly rental and register it with the Tenancy Deposit Scheme (TDS)
  • Set up for the tenant to pay the monthly rent by standing order
  • We could arrange the final accounts for some of your utilities
  • Quarterly statements for your tax returns
  • Our property management team will arrange to visit your property quarterly in order to ensure your tenants are looking after your property and then report back to you our findings
  • We contact your tenants every month to ensure they are happy and enjoying living in their new home
  • Use our local contractors to carry out any repairs/maintenance works as instructed by you
  • We will negotiate any renewal of your tenancy
  • Arrange a professional check out at the end of the tenancy and establish any dilapidations which maybe paid from the tenants deposit
  • Then we will start all over again!

Why us

  • We are an independent sales and letting agent based in Hove and Shoreham, covering the whole of West & East Sussex
  • We specialise in property management, sales and lettings
  • We have professional, good quality tenants for our landlords and serious buyers for our vendors
  • We offer premium properties to rent or buy in all areas of the market
  • We operate 6 days a week
  • Our website is updated daily We advertise on Primelocation, Zoopla Findaproperty and Globrix the biggest property portals in the UK
  • We are one of only a few ARLA registered Agents in Sussex
  • Our staff are ARLA trained with our Managing Director having a specialised diploma in property management and lettings
  • We can offer a one to one level of service to ensure all your needs are met

Preparing your property to let

  • You must have a Landlord’s Gas Saftey Certificate carried out prior to the tenancy commencement, this is in accordance with the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1994 as amended 1996
  • You must have the electrical installation and appliances’ checked prior to the tenancy commencement, this is in accordance with The Electrical Equipments (Safety) Regulations 1994 and The General Product Safety Regulations 1994
  • If you have a furnished property all upholstered furniture must comply with The Furniture and Furnishings (fire) (safety) Reulations 1989 as amended 1993
  • Unfurnished properties still are required to have carpets, curtains, light fittings and white goods left
  • It is preferable to have a neutrally decorated property which has been finished to a good standard. It is advisable tohave linoleum or tiles in the kitchen and bathrooms as this is more hygienic
  • Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors must be installed and working prior to the tenancy commencement
  • Leaving behind instructions for household equipment, central heating and other useful information is a great help
  • You will need to have 3 sets of front door keys ready for the agent, two of these are for the new tenants and one is to be held by us
  • An inventory will need to be carried out by an independent inventory clerk prior to the tenants moving in
  • It is the landlord’s responsibility to ensure there is a working telephone line at the property
  • If you have any maintenance contracts for items such as alarms, white goods and central heating systems we advise you keep these in place for the duration of the tenancy
  • Our property management team will arrange to visit your property quarterly in order to ensure your tenants are looking after your property and then report back to you our findings
  • Final accounts for the utilities need to be arranged, we can do this for you but require instructions from you to do this
  • You should arrange for your mail to be redirected to your new address
  • If you have a chimney this should be swept prior to the tenancy commencement and the tenants will be expected to do the same at the end of their tenancy
  • We recommend that the garden should be in seasonal order at the tenancy commencement

Summary of the Law

Acts of Parliament, such as The Rent Act 1977, The Housing Act 1988 as amended 1996 and The Housing Act 2004 regulate the relationship between Landlords and Tenants. This legislation has been brought in to protect both Landlords and tenants.

Assured Shorthold Tenancy (AST) were brought in with The Housing Act 1988 as amended 1996. These are the most commonly used agreements and allow greater security to both parties. Using an AST agreement gives you the flexibility to create it for any length of time, although a landlord cannot normally recover possession within 6 months from the start unless there has been a serious breach of the agreement. Contrary to popular belief there is no difference as to the security of tenure for the tenant between a furnished house or an unfurnished house.

The Housing Act 2004 saw the introduction of Energy Performance Certificates (EPC) as amended on 6th April 2013, which is now a requirement for a landlord to have for each rental property before it is brought onto the market.

Leasehold Properties

If you are letting a Leasehold property more common if you are letting an apartment then written confirmation must be obtained that letting is permitted. A copy of the Head Lease must be provided to us and we will then attach it to the tenancy agreement.

 


Mortgages

If you have a mortgage on the property you are looking to let then we require written approval from your lender. This can take some time so we suggest as soon as you know you are going to let this is of high priority.

Tax

The income you receive from letting your property is classified as ‘unearned income’ and is liable for tax. If you remain in Great Britain whilst letting your property then you are responsible for declaring the rental income you receive to the Inland Revenue, but you may claim allowances to offset the tax due. We recommended that you seek advice from an accountant.

Overseas Tax

If you are to be an overseas resident whilst letting your home then basic rate tax had to be deducted by Lawton & Dawe Properties and then paid to the Inland Revenue. If you wish to receive your rent gross of tax you should complete a NRL1 form and return it to FICO. A separate form must be completed by all owners of the property and we can provide these to you.

Legal and Loss of Rent Cover

To provide peace of mind, we would recommend you have legal and loss of rent insurance in place. For further information please contact us.

Services

Services – Tenant & Collection

Lawton & Dawe Properties offers a unique service which in this strong lettings market means we can ensure excellent returns being paid to landlord on their investments.

Letting your property whether it is your home or an investment is a serious business and if handled by non-professionals could cause you unnecessary hassle and expense.

Lawton and Dawe Properties is here to guide you through every step of letting your property, from the initial marketing to issuing legal notices.

The services we offer are bespoke to your needs but will fall within these three levels;

Tenant Find Only 50% of 1 months rent

  • property valuation
  • professional law and legislation advice
  • marketing your property
  • accompanying all viewings
  • negotiation of the tenancy terms
  • full referencing of all tenants
  • drafting the tenancy agreement
  • registering the tenants deposit with the TDS
  • organisation of independent inventory
  • negotiation of tenancy renewal (if requested)

Tenant Find & Rent Collection 8% of the monthly rent

All of the above plus…

  • assisting the tenant to set up a monthly standing order
  • rent collection
  • monthly statements
  • credit control
  • deduction of tax for overseas landlords
  • information on Legal and Loss of Rent policies
  • caretaking visit to ensure you comply with your insurers requirements

Full Management 10% of the monthly rent

All of the above plus…

  • Arranging all gas and electrical certificates
  • Arranging the EPC
  • Informing utility companies of a change of occupier
  • Deal with any final accounts for utilities
  • Routine property checks, reporting back to you with our findings
  • Arranging routine repairs and maintenance
  • Payments of invoices where required, subject to fund availability
  • Maintaining the property complies with current safety legislation
  • Reconciling deposit returns and damage repair
  • Negotiating any end of tenancy claim
  • Communicating with tenants to avoid any problems on a monthly basis

Buy to let

Are you looking to start or increase your portfolio of rental property? If you are then use our expertise and experience to guide you through the whole process. We can offer objective and professional advice on the type of property and the area in which to invest.

What we can do for you?

Research and find suitable properties for you, taking into consideration your financial requirements.

Advise on market trends

Discuss portfolio strategies

Secure good returns on short and long term investments

Oversee portfolio management

View properties prior to purchase, to advise on rental value and on work needed prior to letting

Recommend reputable financial advisors of which we have solid relationships