Renting Out Your Home
Letting your property
If you plan to let out your property it is likely that it will be let under an assured short hold tenancy agreement (AST), which gives you certain rights:
- You can get your property back after six months providing that the agreed term of tenancy is over and you have given the tenant 2 months' notice.
- You can charge a market rent.
- You have the right to ask your tenants to leave if they don’t pay the rent on time, behave antisocially or damage the property at any time as long as this is stated in the tenancy agreement.
The length of the tenancy should be agreed with the tenant before they move in and be included in the tenancy agreement. This could be for a fixed term or be left open.
You should make sure that you have a tenancy agreement drawn up before the tenant moves in. While you can do this verbally, it will offer you no protection should a dispute arise.
Your responsibility as a landlord
As a landlord you have certain responsibilities you need to adhere to. These include:
- external repairs to the property
- ensure that the boiler or hot water system is properly functioning
- repair any sanitary installations
- ensure that your electric and gas systems are safe
- ensure that any furniture you provide is fire safe
- ensure that there are fire alarms installed
- provide and Energy Performance Certificate for the property
- protect your tenants deposit in a government approved scheme
The tenant is responsible for looking after your property, paying the rent on time and for paying for all other bills unless otherwise agreed beforehand.
You will have to pay Income Tax on the earnings that you make from renting the property, but you can get deductions for day to day running costs. You will also have to get permission from your mortgage lender if you have a mortgage and wish to rent out the property.
Ending a tenancy
You can end an assure short hold tenancy any time after 6 months, providing you give the tenant 2 months' notice. If they refuse to leave you have to apply to the court for an eviction order. It is against the law to evict someone without having gone to court first.
If you need to get your property back quickly you can used the accelerated possession procedure, which negates the need to go to court. You can only use this procedure if you have a written tenancy agreement and you can prove that you have given your tenant notice of possession.
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An assured shorthold tenancy is regarded as one of the most common forms of tenancy agreement in the UK and was first introduced by the 1988 Housing Act.Find out more
There are different forms of tenancy contract that can be created between a tenant and a landlord depending on the circumstance of the rental. The rights that the landlord and tenant have will be detailed in the tenancy agreement.Find out more
A landlord is an individual who rents out a property in some way, shape or form that they own. Landlords are subject to different landlord laws, rules and regulations regarding their actions and the actions of their tenants.Find out more