Tag Archives: tenant

Landlord Insurance – The best investment

May 25, 2012

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There are many different types of insurance covers out there, you must make sure you choose the right one.

You must look into what tenant type you have, the type of property you are insuring plus if you have any furnishings or fixtures and fittings that need cover.

CIA Insurance provide a vast range of insurance coverage, wither you are letting out to students or you need unoccupied coverage we will help you find your tailored policy.

You can call us for a quote on 0844 888 8575 or visit our website www.cia-insurance.co.uk and click GET A QUOTE.

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Tenants are being evicted so landlords gain a profit during the Olympics

May 8, 2012

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Some landlords with tenants in East London are evicting people to cash in on the Olympics. Other landlords are even raising rent prices for the duration of the games this summer.

These are illegal practices which housing charity Shelter fear will get worse in the run up to the games which start in July.

Landlords are giving people between one week to three weeks to move out of their properties and some private rentals are rising to £6,000 per week!

The NLA (National Landlords Association) are encouraging landlords to keep their loyal tenants as they may pay a price in the future with bad ones.

Here are some guidelines for landlords with property in East London who would like to rent during the Olympics from the NLA…

1)    Ensure the accommodation is properly furnished and includes beds, sheets, towels and appliances – a Wi-Fi connection will be an advantage

2)    Keep the property to a high standard, tenants visiting during the Olympics will expect good quality accommodation

3)    Check the terms and conditions if using a letting agency to find a tenant; typically, they charge a commission of up to 25%

4)    Use a letting agent that is registered with a professional body such as the UK Association of Letting Agents (UKALA) or the Association of Residential Lettings Agents (ARLA)

5)    Issue a contract for a Holiday Let or Licence. This can be downloaded from a reputable service that supplies such legal forms such as www.oyezforms.co.uk 

6)    Be aware that this type of tenancy contract does not fall within the legislation requiring a tenancy deposit to be protected in a government-authorized tenancy deposit protection scheme

7)    Take an inventory detailing the contents of the property

8)    Ensure that rent for the whole tenancy is obtained upfront

9)    Supply enough sets of keys for the number of people renting the property

10)    Provide information about the area, such as maps, an events calendar and transport advice.

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House prices take a slight fall but will still be rising in the next year

May 4, 2012

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House prices seem to be fluctuating widely at the moment, Halifax have commented.

The mortgage lender and bank have said there was a 2.4% drop in April, this may have something to do with the stamp duty deduction as sales dropped after rising with the deduction.

With the drop in April it took the average house price down to £159.883 which is slightly lower than last year by 0.5%.

Halifax have warned that house prices are still rising even with this small dip.

“Prices in the three months to April were 0.3% higher than in the previous quarter, marking the first rise in this measure for seven months,” The Halifax’s housing economist, Martin Ellis, has commented.

“The ending of the stamp duty holiday for first-time buyers in late March appears to have boosted home sales early this year as buyers strove to beat the deadline, and has probably contributed to the volatility in house prices in the last few months,” he added.*

Nationwide have given a slightly different percentage to Halifax, but as the different mortgage lenders use information from their own lending it isn’t surprising that they all have different numbers.

Nationwide have put the annual fall at 0.9%.

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House prices have a small rise in the UK

April 26, 2012

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House prices have only had a slight change in the last year by having a small rise of 0.3%, the office for national statistics (ONS) have commented.

Obviously there are big differences in different regions in the UK with prices continuously rising in London but Northern Ireland and the North East have seen a sharp fall.

The average house price in the UK is £224,473, this is from February 2012 when prices rose 0.2%.

Average house prices around the UK

Rugby – £183,779 – 3rd Highest in Warwickshire

Daventry – £237,113 – 2nd Highest in Northamptonshire

Milton Keynes – £202,425 – Most popular place for first – time buyers to step onto the property ladder at the moment.

Barnet (North London) – £435,448

City Of London – £482,851

Kensington and Chelsea – £1,362,925 – A lot higher than the other average prices!

The ONS have taken over the publication of the index from the Department For Communities and Local Government.

They have commented:

 “In the 12 months to February 2012, average house prices increased in both England and Scotland by 0.4% and 1.1% respectively,” the ONS said.

“These increases were offset by decreases in Wales, where average prices decreased by 0.5%, and Northern Ireland, where average prices fell by 9.7%.

“The annual increase in average house prices in England was driven by increases in both London and the South East, where prices increased over the year by 1.7% and 1.2% respectively,” the ONS added.*

 

*Quote from BBC News

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Landlords may be looking at bleaker time, but still being told to invest

April 4, 2012

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Landlords are now facing bleaker times with rent prices dipping and also the cost of mortgages rising.

In February the average cost of monthly rent was down 1.6%, in England and Wales the price went from £719 (at its highest in October 2011) and went down to £707.

The big mortgage giants are now upping the cost of borrowing. The Daily Mail have reported that Santander and Leeds BS have now increased their mortgage rates, they are blaming the Euro zone crisis for this price hike.

Landlords have been told to keep investing as price of renting is staying high and house prices are expected to stay where they are for the next few years.

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Identity fraud and fraudulent tenants on the rise

March 21, 2012

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Research done by let insurance services has found that more and more landlords are being hit by fraudulent tenants.

In the first half of 2011 identity fraud attempts had doubled and 50,000 victims of impersonation was reported last year. That’s an astonishing 275 victims a day.

unfortunately identity fraud had been on the rise recently. Landlord and buy to let magazine have reported that due to the credit crunch more people are unable to retrieve credit in their name so they turn to ID theft to get a good credit rating and also get a bank account and credit cards.

The magazine have issued some tips to help reduce tenant fraud…

  • Obtain a credit check – Individuals with good credit histories are generally good tenants.
  • Obtain landlords and employment references. Don’t forget that some landlords just want to get rid of their problem tenants and will therefore give good references. Are the referees with aol/Hotmail/google accounts genuine? We recommend that you ask the applicant to provide further proof, for example copies of payslips or sight of bank statements if you have any doubts.
  • Make sure that your tenancy application forms are completed in full. If an applicant only completes part of it, they may be hiding something.
  • Don’t take everything at face value. Don’t believe anything that you are told and/or what is on the application. You will pick up a lot of information about the applicant when showing them the property. What kind of car does the prospective tenant drive?
  • Take time to compare addresses shown on the application with those shown on the ID documents. Ask for previous utility and telephone (including mobile phone) bills and statements, and check if the name and address and other information matches the information on the application form. If not, why not?
  • Use common sense and gut instinct; this can also be a valuable tool when deciding whether or not you want to rent to a prospective tenant.
  • Adopt procedures including a checklist for screening applicants before they go through the referencing process and train everyone involved on this. If a fraudulent applicant spots a weak spot in your processes they will use it.
  • Checklist to include obtaining ID documents and proof of current residency which you can file online on the Let Insurance Services referencing system.
  • Beware subletting when the tenants have moved in. Make sure that when you carry out your periodic property maintenance checks that the occupier is the same name on the tenancy agreement. There are horror stories of seemingly good tenants not moving in and subletting the property for profit.
  • Take out insurance for legal costs to evict the tenants.*

 

*Landlord & buy to let magazine

 

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Renting boom can be a great income for landlords

March 16, 2012

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If you have recently brought a property and would like to become a landlord, great!

Renting property at the moment is a good earner as more and more people are unable to afford a mortgage deposit and monthly payments.

Landlords should make the most of this opportunity especially in this economic climate.

Make sure you have taken out a landlord insurance policy, this is very important as the consequences may be a very high price.

When the household isn’t occupied you must do regular checks on the property and if any maintainance work needs to be carried out it must be done before the tenants move in.

Landlords should abide by the gas safety regulations 1998 and prove that all gas appliances are safe. If you do not abide by the regulations you may face a big fine and have a vacant property for a period of time, making you lose out on the tenants rental payments.

Abide by gas safety rules or face the consequences...

Abide by gas safety rules or face the consequences...

Fire safety is paramount, the London fire brigade released a report of figures which showed that six out of ten people who died in a house fire in 2009 didn’t have smoke alarms fitted in the home. Get your tenants to test the smoke alarms weekly and if there are any problems sort them out as soon as possible.

If you are advertising your property to be let out it must look clean, attractive and be well maintained. It doesn’t cost much to freshen up a home with paint and small extras, what you spend will be paid back when your property has tenants.

Keep your property looking fresh and clean...

Keep your property looking fresh and clean...

Check for faulty electrics, broken boilers and if you have any pipes that are uninsulated rectify this! The cost of a burst pipe and no tenants is high, fix the situation before it becomes a problem.

Obviously keeping you property secure is also important. Always have a burglar alarm fitted in the home and keep padlocks on garages and any other external buildings that may hold expensive items.

Renting can be a fantastic income, make sure you follow the above and you portfolio may expand in the future.

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Thinking about becoming a landlord? Consider where to buy property in the UK

March 15, 2012

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Have you thought about the best areas in the UK to become a landlord?

Renting property is very popular and has been for a while with mortgage deposits being too high there seems to be no let up in the rental market.

Have you considered buying property near Universities?

Have you considered buying property near Universities?

Have you considered key places in the country to buy and let out property?

  • Universities
  • Schools
  • Cities ie London, Manchester and Birmingham

A postcode survey has taken place and it has shown the unlikely places to be the most popular for landlords.

The contenders for most popular place…

  • Blackpool – Listed as one of the best for landlords as it has low property value and high rent
  • Wigan
  • Romford
  • Uxbridge
  • Cleveland
  • Luton

Website hip-consultant.co.uk have found a similar survey that lists London as one place with the biggest demand for rental properties in this country.

Listed after London are…

  • Luton
  • Cambridge
  • Milton Keynes
  • Portsmouth
The Borough's in Luton

The Borough's in Luton

These towns and cities are so popular, property is let almost straight after the property has been advertised. This is mainly due to people moving to these places for word and not wanting to commute and because of good schools and Universities being in a certain area.

Always think carefully about becoming a landlord, it isn’t always down to where you let, it’s also who you let to. Consider your landlord insurance policy after you have found where you would like to buy property.

Consider everything before letting out property, Where you buy and who you let to

Consider everything before letting out property, Where you buy and who you let to

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Use your home as a profitable income…

March 9, 2012

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Do you have more bedrooms than you need in your house? If you do, have you considered using your rooms as a profitable income and rent them out?

With the economy the way it is at the moment it is advisable to take the opportunity while you can.

You must also consider if your home is a suitable candidate for this. Is the room well furnished and property maintained? Storage space is always a plus point and make sure it is a comfortable living space.

Always investigate your potential tenants, get rental references and check their income just to make sure the tenant can keep up with their payments and you won’t have any loss of income.

The government in the UK have set up a rent a room scheme. If you take this opportunity home owners can receive £4,250 which is tax-free for when you let a furnished room.

If you would like more information on this, go onto the government website DIRECT GOV.

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Squatters, What are the property owners rights?

March 8, 2012

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Squatting consists of occupying an abandoned or unoccupied space or building, usually residential, that the squatter does not own, rent or otherwise have permission to use.”

Despite the term ‘squatters rights’ there are steps you can take to get them out of your home. There are certain laws for squatting and there are also different ways of getting them out of the property.

For more information on squatters and your rights CLICK HERE for the Direct Gov website and they provide links to Citizens Advice and more to help you.

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