We do the research to make sure you are aware of your current legal obligations as a landlord.
The Furniture and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations 1988 and the subsequent amendments to that Act
As a landlord, you must ensure that all upholstered furniture, soft furnishings, beds, mattresses, pillows, cushions, headboards, loose and stretch covers for furniture and seat pads supplied to a property as part of a letting must comply with these regulations.
Exempted items are: curtains, carpets, bed linen, duvets, period and antique furniture manufactured before 1950.
All furniture purchased new since 1st March 1990 should comply – if it does it will have a safety label attached to it at the point of sale. If in doubt, the items should be removed.
For more information, you can download a copy of the regulations here:
The Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998
Under the above regulations, it is the landlord’s responsibility to ensure that all gas appliances (boilers, cookers, gas fires, pipework and flues) are maintained in good order and checked for safety at least every 12 months by a Gas Safe registered engineer. Landlords are obliged to give their tenants a copy of this gas safety record within 28 days of it being carried out. The regulations also state that you must retain the gas safety record for a period of 2 years.
All gas appliances in properties let must also be checked for safety by a Gas Safe registered engineer before a tenancy begins and must be rechecked annually on the anniversary of the previous inspection.
At Squire Estates we are happy to get the Gas testing done for you by one of our Gas Safe registered engineers.
For more information please visit www.gassaferegister.co.uk
The Electrical Equipment (Safety) Regulations 1994
The above regulations place a legal responsibility on landlords to make sure all electrical wiring, installations and appliances supplied as part of the property are safe. To comply with the regulations, all electrical installations and appliances in the property need to be regularly checked and serviced by an appropriately qualified engineer. Whilst there is not at present a specific statutory requirement placed upon a landlord to prove that such items are regularly checked or tested by a qualified electrical engineer, Squire Estates strongly recommends to landlords that appropriate ongoing checks of such equipment should be scheduled and kept up to date.
We can, if required, arrange for electrical safety checks to be carried out on your behalf by a qualified engineer.
All properties are required to have smoke detectors/alarms fitted on every floor and from October 2015 it will become a legal requirement to also fit carbon monoxide alarms in all high risk rooms.
If you do not live in the UK, we are required by law to deduct Basic Rate Tax from rent received and pay this to the taxman, unless we have authorisation from them to pay rent to you without deducting tax.
If your usual place of abode is outside the UK, you will need to complete an NRL form under the Non-Resident Landlord Scheme to receive your rent from us without deduction of tax. We can provide you with the appropriate form or it can be downloaded from http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/cnr/nr_landlords.htm#13 you will need to quote our unique reference number, which is 922/NA032756 when filling it out.
If your property is owned in joint names, you will both need to apply for approval to receive rent with no tax deducted.
Once your non residency approval is granted, Squire Estates will receive notification from the HMRC and be entitled to pay over rental income to you without deducting tax.
From 6th April 2007 legislation came into effect requiring that any landlord or agent who takes a deposit from a tenant for an Assured Shorthold Tenancy must safeguard it in an approved tenancy deposit scheme. We are a member of the Tenancy Deposit Scheme, which is administered by The Dispute Service Ltd. For all Assured Shorthold Tenancies where we hold the deposit, it will be protected by this scheme. For more information about The Dispute Service please visit www.thedisputeservice.co.uk
Energy Performance Certificates
From 1st October 2008, all rental properties are required to have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) which rates the energy efficiency and environmental impact of your property on a scale from A to G. The EPC must be made available to prospective tenants before a new tenancy. The EPC will remain valid for 10 years. Squire Estates use an accredited EPC provider and can commission one on your behalf.