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7 Things to do before letting your home
Here are seven things any future landlord needs to have in place in order to let a home to tenants in a safe manner. This is legally required by the Government to safeguard good housing conditions and offer better homes to tenants. Preparing your home will help protect your relationship with your tenants and smooth the way for a peaceful tenancy.
ENERGY PERFORMANCE CERTIFICATE
Your energy Performance Certificate or “EPC” must have a rating of minimum E to allow the letting of your home. An EPC is valid for 10 years. If your rating is below E, you need to follow the energy report recommendations to address any issue and obtain a new energy certificate with an improved rating, minimum E. You can verify if you already have one on here: https://www.gov.uk/find-energy-certificate or find a local energy assessor here: https://www.gov.uk/get-new-energy-certificate
ELECTRICAL SAFETY CERTIFICATE
An electrical safety certificate report or “EICR” is valid for 5 years. Please contact a local NICEIC accredited electrician who will investigate any electric outlets such as plugs, wires, switches and electric connections. He will produce an initial report with a list of potential issues to address and after these repairs have been done, a final valid certificate is delivered.
GAS SAFETY CERTIFICATE
A Gas safety certificate is valid for 1 year. This is a similar report that confirms that all your gas appliances and supply are safe.
CARBON MONOXIDE ALARM
A working carbon monoxide alarm must be located in the same room as your boiler. Please take a stamp dated video when testing it. It is the tenant’s responsibility to change the batteries and maintain the alarm in working order. For added security, we’d recommend landlords to test it themselves if they come to inspect their property or keep a written track record of asking the tenants to test it on a 6-months basis.
A smoke alarm is to detect fire smoke only, it will not detect carbon monoxide. If your home has several floors, you need one alarm per floor. As for the carbon monoxide alarm, landlords must retain proof that the alarm is working at the start of the tenancy. The tenants are responsible for changing the batteries and testing them at regular intervals.
FURNITURE AND FURNISHING REGULATIONS
All your furniture and furnishings must comply with The Furniture and Furnishing Fire Safety Regulations (1988). Ideally, it must have a tag somewhere confirming it is safe against fire. Most modern furniture and furnishings do comply with the regulations. Second-hand furniture and furnishings are not recommended to use to furnish a property to let as it is harder to find the required information from manufacturers. It is considered an offence to let a home with unsafe and old furniture, so best to invest in something new.
Please keep all these documents on record and provide copies to your future tenants.
CONSENT TO LET
If your property is mortgaged, you must inform your mortgage lender about your intention to let and obtain a letter of consent from him prior to entering into a tenancy agreement. If your property is leasehold (ie. you have a superior/head leaseholder), you are required to obtain written consent from your (superior) landlord prior to sub-letting.
If you need any help or free advice to prepare your home for a tenancy, please feel free to call Muriel anytime on 07341 443 858 or by email to Hello@wiserockproperty. We’ll give you the information you need to make the best decisions.
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