Tag Archives: letting agency

Keep your insurance valid, or massive consequences will occur!

January 26, 2012

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Thinking about renting out your property?

 Want to go on a long holiday and don’t want to leave your home empty?

 Sometimes leaving your home vacant may be a better idea!

You want to take a break, a year-long trip but you would also like to keep money coming in while you are away, so you let out your property.

To avoid agent costs you privately advertise your home and get the offer you want almost straight away. You think you are letting out to a nice, young and upmarket couple and go off on your break blissfully unaware of what will happen while you are away.

The holiday is half way through its course when you get an urgent call from your neighbour, you need to fly home immediately because there has been serious damage caused to your home by the tenants.

What you didn’t know is that your perfect tenants in fact like to party, a lot! They have destroyed your home and even personal belongings have been damaged.

The tenants have fled, of course, leaving you with a completely destroyed property. Obviously the first thing you do is contact your insurance company who sympathise with you, but when you tell them it was tenants who caused all the damage they tell you the bad news:

“Ah well I am afraid you are not covered for this as your policy is owner – occupied and not covered for tenants “

That was a big mistake made as now you have to use your own money including your savings to rebuild your property.

The insurance on your property automatically becomes void if you don’t notify them of any changes, it is so easy to phone your insurer and say you are now letting your property out to tenants.

"Ah well I am afraid you are not covered for this as your policy is owner - occupied and not covered for tenants "

You may also want to think about using a professional letting agency, they do take a cut of the monthly rent (around 10%) but you can pursue them if anything goes wrong.

If you do decide to privately advertise your property, make sure you have taken every step to protect yourself and find the right tenants. Never jump into the deep end, do your research and do background checks. Also have guarantors to sign for them to make sure you are not taken for a ride. Always get a deposit from the tenant, usually two to three months rent to cover any costs of damage that may occur.

Make sure you are covered for damaged property!

Remember, tell your mortgage company and insurer to keep your insurance valid!

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Hidden costs you shouldn’t miss!

November 16, 2011

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Hidden costs should be looked into when landlords come to invest in a property. This has mainly been aimed at landlords taking out landlord insurance and going into the buy-to-let property market.

Additional charges like fees and taxes will be charged to landlords on top of what they have already had to pay for real estate.

A lettings expert has warned those who are entering the industry for the first time. An extra 4% will be charged on top of the price of the abode on stamp duty for buyers of £500,000 properties.

The fee then drops as the value of the property does, 3% for £250,000 and 1% for £125,000. Buying a property also brings up other costs such as a solicitor fee, mortgage and administration charges. Buyer who have bought apartments or flats may have to pay charges to a management company.

With a rise in house prices in October of 0.4%, these extra costs are certainly something to look into. Cheaper landlords insurance will give you extra peace of mind and more money left in your pocket.

 

Source- Simple

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CIA Let Property Insurance – Tips for landlords

October 18, 2011

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10 Tips For Finding Reliable Tenants

  1. CIA Insurance advises you use a professional well-reputed letting agency to supply and vet your tenants – it will cost around 10 per cent per month for the service but the peace of mind and speed of finding good tenants is worth it for most. This is by far the best single piece of advice you can take.
  2. If you don’t use a professional letting agency then the duty of care to vet the potential tenants and maintain the relationship, arrange contracts, secure deposits and make any repairs falls directly to you. As a minimum you should always request details of last three years residences, date of birth, National Insurance number, a minimum of two referees and next of kin details.
  3. State that a copy of a driving licence, passport or other proof of identity is a requirement. Two forms of identity are better than one and should be checked to make sure they match.
  4. Always use a tenant credit referencing service for background checks, this small investment up front could save you fortunes later on. If the reference comes back with any doubt, disregard the tenant immediately.
  5. Ask to see the last six months bank statements – and be sure to check the name and address at the top of the statements matches other forms of identification.
  6. Make regular home visits – you are obliged to give the tenants notice of when you will be visiting.
  7. Advise your tenants to take out insurance to cover the home contents. You as the landlord should speak with CIA about landlords buildings insurance and landlords contents insurance.
  8. Serve a Section 21 notice at the start of the tenancy. That is the day they move in. They will usually sign a copy of the notice at that time, providing the evidence you need to prove the notice has been served. This should be done AFTER the deposit has been lodged in a scheme.
  9. Take a six weeks deposit to cover your property and encourage the tenant not to simply default on the last month’s rent.
  10. Make sure you have landlords liability insurance in place that covers “Injury to people residing in or visiting the premises”.
Call CIA Insurance on 0844 88 88 323 to get a quote today or visit our website at www.cia-landlords.co.uk
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