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lettings

A Landlord’s Guide


Why use Galbraith to let your property? We let and manage well over one thousand homes for hundreds of clients across Scotland in cities, towns and the country. Let our professionalism, reliability and efficiency give you complete peace of mind. Being a landlord in today’s environment carries with it significant responsibility and risk. We recognise that landlords need an agent who they can trust, who is professionally qualified and who will look after their interests ensuring maximum rental return and minimum stress. We are in constant contact with our landlords and tenants and continually improve our service to reflect the demands, requirements and observations made by all parties. Our client satisfaction surveys reveal that never less than 95% of clients who have either bought, sold or let through Galbraith say they would definitely recommend us to family or friends – feedback to be proud of. We hope that this Landlord’s Guide will provide you with some valuable pointers and at the same time give you an insight as to why more and more owners are entrusting the letting of their property to Galbraith.


I would highly recommend Galbraith. I have found the whole process hassle free and the staff extremely friendly and efficient.

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Meet the Professionals

Our letting agent is always very well informed and gets things done promptly and efficiently. We have come to value her advice and know we can trust her with running our houses. She makes our letting business possible.

As one of Scotland’s leading property consultancies, we have huge experience of letting all types of properties in widely varying circumstances. Our local lettings teams are made up of acknowledged property experts who have been with us for many years. Our residential lettings service is designed with flexibility in mind – to suit each client’s individual needs. We combine our established local presence with years of experience providing a personal service for both landlords and tenants. We maintain the highest professional standards providing assurance and peace of mind for both you and your tenants. We are members of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), the Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA Propertymark) as well as having SAFEagent accreditation.

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Buying To Let or Reluctant Landlord?

What Makes a Great Rental Property?

There is little doubt that the buy to let phenomenon has played a significant role in the housing market over the past few years. Today with uncertainty in so many investment areas we still believe buying to let can be a sound investment.

The simple answer has to be a property that is competently maintained, clean and well presented.

Our experienced and knowledgeable staff can advise on the most popular areas to buy a rental property taking into account; risk, market and return. We can also help you make the right decisions about the financial implications of becoming an investor landlord. Once you have purchased or decided to rent your home, you need to be certain of letting to the right type of tenant and of conforming to the increasingly complex legal requirements. Whether you are considering renting for the first time or already have a portfolio, Galbraith can take over the responsibility of finding tenants, credit reference checks, repairs, rent collection, marketing and the legalities so you can enjoy the benefits of your investment without the day to day problems associated with being a landlord.

At Galbraith, prior to taking on the management of your property, one of our experienced agents will visit the premises and ensure that the repair and décor is of an adequate standard. We will then prepare a market appraisal taking into account; location, size and demand for homes of this type. They will discuss with you the typical rent you may expect, based on our experience of current market trends and comparable rentals of similar local properties. If you are renting your property unfurnished try to imagine what it will look like to a prospective tenant. Clean, tidy and freshly decorated are key to securing quality tenants. All kitchen appliances e.g. cooker; washing machine; dishwasher; fridge/freezer should be clean and in good working order. The central heating system should have been recently serviced and any gas appliances tested and have a Landlords Safety Certificate. Always put yourself in a potential tenant’s shoes! If anything would put you off renting the property make sure you fix it immediately.

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Getting the Property Ready

As a landlord living abroad I doubt it would be viable without your help. Excellent service thank you.

The responsibilities of property rental, and in particular compliance with the rules and regulations surrounding it, are the main reasons why most landlords prefer to appoint a letting agent like Galbraith, to handle everything on their behalf. Key individuals in our offices hold the highest level industry letting qualification making us compliant with the new Lettings Agent Code of Practice. We will shortly be applying to join the new Letting Agent Register. There are numerous laws and regulations that landlords must comply with when renting out a property and it is vital that you are aware of your legal rights and obligations. We want to set you up for success and to make it easy for you we have included all you need to know before letting your property in this pack.

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Before Marketing Your Property Landlord Registration If you have not already registered as a private landlord with your local authority then you need to register and provide us with your landlord registration number before your property is marketed. You must maintain your registration throughout the period of your agreement with us. You can register online at www.landlordregistrationscotland.gov.uk. It is a criminal offence with a penalty of up to £50,000 if you fail to register. Your landlord registration number must be displayed in any advertising or marketing materials. Consent To Let If you have a mortgage you should ensure that you obtain any necessary consent from your lender to the letting of your property. You will be required to provide us with a copy of this if requested by a tenant.


Insurance You should insure your property, the fixtures and fittings and any contents belonging to you in the property under a specialist landlord policy with a reputable insurer who is made aware of the let of your property for full reinstatement value with owners' and public liability cover and loss of rent cover. Galbraith can recommend a broker who can help you to find the most suitable insurance for your property. Overseas Landlords For Landlords who live abroad, the Galbraith Full Management or Rent Collection services are available. The Let Only service cannot be used. Overseas landlords are regarded as non-UK residents for tax purposes, and need to apply to HM Revenue and Customs for Non-Resident Landlord status. If this is not done then rent has to be paid net of income tax. Galbraith can provide forms for this (NRL1) and will guide landlords through the whole process if required.

tenancy. On becoming aware of a defect, landlords must complete the work within a reasonable time. If repairs are not carried out within a reasonable timescale then tenants may report a breach of the Repairing Standard to the First-Tier Tribunal for Scotland (Housing and Property Chamber). The Tribunal can make an enforcement order against the property requiring remedial works to be completed. It is a criminal offence not to comply with the order and the property cannot be re-let until the order has been complied with. Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) • All landlords must provide Energy Performance Certificates to new and prospective tenants. The energy rating of a property must be included in any advertising or marketing material. • The full EPC must be made available free of charge before the commencement of a tenancy. • The EPC should be displayed in the property.

NOTE: Please insert our details in section 17 and our Reference number which is NA 034 088 in Section 18. Repairing Standard The Repairing Standard, contained in the Housing (Scotland) Act 2006 as amended, covers the legal obligations of private landlords to ensure that a property meets a minimum physical standard. Landlords must carry out a pre-tenancy check of their property to identify work required to meet the Repairing Standard and notify tenants of any such work. Landlords also have a duty to repair and maintain their property to the Repairing Standard throughout the

An EPC graph details how energy efficient and environmentally friendly your rental property is

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Before the Tenancy Commences Gas Safety Certificate To ensure compliance with the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998, all gas flues, fittings and appliances in rental properties must be maintained in a safe condition and checked annually by a Gas Safe registered engineer. Gas safety inspection certificates and minor work certificates for any remedial work must be retained. A copy of the certificate must be issued to new tenants before the start of a new tenancy. Smoke and Fire Detectors To comply with the Repairing Standard a property must have: • at least one functioning smoke alarm in the room which is frequently used by the occupants for general daytime living purposes. • a functioning smoke alarm in every circulation space, such as hallways, landings and: • a heat alarm in every kitchen. • all alarms must be interlinked by hard wiring and there must be at least one alarm on each floor.

Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR) Landlords are obligated to ensure that all electrical appliances and fittings within the property are in good working order to comply with the Housing (Scotland) Act 2014. An EICR is like an ‘MOT of the electrics’ in the property. It must be carried out by a NICEIC Approved Contractor or a member of the Electrical Contractors' Association of Scotland (SELECT) who will check the condition of an existing electrical installation against BS 7671. An EICR must be obtained before the start of a tenancy and be renewed on an on-going basis every 5 years. If any appliances in the property are for tenant use then the EICR must be accompanied by a Portable Appliance Test (PAT) listing each appliance inspected, and its location in the house. The PAT is carried out annually. Fire Regulations If Furnished If you are supplying furnishings with your property you must ensure these comply with the Furniture and Furnishings (Fire Safety) Regulations 1988. Carbon Monoxide Alarm A carbon monoxide detector must be installed in every space where there is a fixed combustion appliance (excluding an appliance used solely for cooking) and (if applicable) where a flue passes through any room. Legionella Risk Assessment

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Landlords have a duty to have a Legionella Risk Assessment carried out. This can be carried out either by the landlord themselves or they can instruct a professional.

NICEIC Report on electrical installations and condition


I found the team friendly and helpful and it was very pleasant to deal with them.

Landlord Gas Safety Record issued by Gas Safe registered engineer

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All the team I deal with now are excellent. I have rented out the property for nearly 20 years.

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At Tenancy Commencement Documentation Landlords need to provide all new tenants with certain specified documents including:

The agreement must include: • The names of all people involved. • The rental price and how it’s paid. • The deposit amount and how it will be protected. • When the deposit can be fully or partly withheld (eg to repair damage caused by tenants). • The property address.

• EICR.

• The start date of the tenancy.

• EPC.

• The tenant and landlord obligations.

• PAT certification.

• Who’s responsible for repairs.

• Inventory.

• Which bills the tenants are responsible for.

• Gas safety certificate (if applicable). Deposit We will require a tenant to pay a deposit of up to two months' rent at the commencement of the tenancy. This deposit is held by SafeDeposits Scotland, who are one of the three government approved tenancy deposit schemes. We will register the deposit within 30 working days of the tenancy start date.

• A statement telling the tenant that antisocial behavior is a breach of the agreement. • Information on how and when the rent will be reviewed. • Whether the property can be let to someone else (sublet) or have lodgers. • The grounds for repossession. Termination of the Lease

After the payment has been made to SafeDeposits Scotland we will provide the tenant(s) with a copy of the Regulation 42 document within 30 days of the tenancy start date. Inventory

Landlords cannot serve a notice to leave unless one or more of the eviction grounds apply. Under the new regime there are 18 specific grounds for eviction which are the only grounds for ending the tenancy.

An inventory recording the condition of the property and any fixtures, fittings and contents must be provided to a tenant at the commencement of a tenancy. We will organize this on your behalf.

A landlord can no longer recover possession by ending the tenancy at the expiry of the contractual period.

Tenancy Agreement

Tenants can voluntarily choose to leave a rented property by giving 28 days’ notice to the landlord.

The Private Residential Tenancy (PRT) is the new form of tenancy agreement between the landlord and the tenant. It sets out the legal terms and conditions of the tenancy.

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“ Managing Your Property

Your team has always been helpful, approachable and friendly. We do not live locally, so really appreciate that the team knows this and works with us to overcome the practical issues this creates at times. Thank you!

Galbraith offer three levels of service depending on how involved you would like us to be: fully managed, rent collection and let only. Managed Service

Rent Collection Service

A comprehensive service for landlords. We market and let the property, collect the rent and manage the tenancy, liaise with the tenant and deal with maintenance issues as they arise. Galbraith carries out regular property inspections following the detailed inventory completed at the start of the tenancy. Photographs are taken at every visit to create an inspection report. This provides both landlord and tenant with a six monthly record of the property’s condition, providing peace of mind to the landlord and helping to reduce the risks of disputes at end of tenancy. Our experienced property managers are able to spot maintenance issues before they become serious or cause damage.

This is for landlords who want Galbraith to collect and administer the rent but wish to deal with repairs and maintenance themselves. We market the property, find and reference the tenant, set up the tenancy and handle the collection of rent.

NOTE: Our fees are available to view in our terms and conditions pack. 11

Let Only Service This is for landlords who wish us to market the property and let to a good tenant but who will collect the rent and deal with repair, maintenance and all tenant liaison thereafter. If your circumstances change or you would like us to take on the management of a property or portfolios with existing tenants, then please contact one of the team to find out how we can help.


Lettings Services Available Managed Service

Includes Regular property inspections including photographic reports

Rent Collection Service

Let Only Service

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Maintenance and repairs arranged Dealing with insurance queries and obtaining quotes for large works

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Arranging contractor visits Check in and check out of your tenant by independent inventory providers

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Managing deliveries of new appliances

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Detailed Inventory*

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Deposit handover to Safe Deposits Scotland

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Negotiation of deposit allocation at end of tenancy Deposit return process

Monthly statements

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Printed annual statements by request

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Regular property advertising

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Reference and credit checks

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Rent guarantee*

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Accompanied viewings

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Tenancy agreement preparation

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Collection of ďŹ rst month’s rent and deposit Utilities and Council tax transferred at start and end of tenancy

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Rent collection by standing order

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*Additional Cost

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Marketing Your Property We want your property to stand out from the competition. With proper marketing we will ensure that it is seen by would-be tenants, however they choose to search. In a recent industry survey, 81% of tenants said that they ďŹ rst saw the property they are now renting online*, so a proper web and social media presence is vital to help get your property in front of a large potential audience. Your property will be advertised through our website along with leading property portals OnTheMarket.com, Rightmove and CityLets. Nearly three quarters of potential tenants conduct their search for rental property on their mobile phone,* so a fully responsive site which is easy to use on mobiles and tablets, such as the Galbraith website, can help to ďŹ nd a quality tenant quickly and easily. We will also use social media to market your property, getting it in front of a hyper-local and relevant audience. Tenants consider the number and quality of images to be important in their property search.

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Our highly skilled team of professionals will organise the photographs on your behalf and put together a premium listing which will grab the attention of quality tenants. We provide professional To Let signs which will be visible from the street or roadside. Our bold colours ensure that wherever your property is situated, our signs are easily noticed. In rural locations we can arrange additional signage for road ends as appropriate. We will also display your property in our oďŹƒce window/boards. *Source: The Property Academy Tenants Survey 2016

We will market your property to prospective tenants however they choose to search


Offices across Scotland Elgin 01343 546 362 elgin@galbraithgroup.com Inverness 01463 224 343 inverness@galbraithgroup.com Elgin

Aberdeen 01224 860 710 aberdeen@galbraithgroup.com

Inverness Aberdeen

Perth 01738 451 111 perth@galbraithgroup.com Cupar 01334 659 980 cupar@galbraithgroup.com

Oban

Perth Cupar Stirling

Stirling 01786 434 600 stirling@galbraithgroup.com Edinburgh 0131 240 6960 edinburgh@galbraithgroup.com Galashiels 01896 754 842 galashiels@galbraithgroup.com Kelso 01573 224 244 kelso@galbraithgroup.com Ayr 01292 268 181 ayr@galbraithgroup.com Castle Douglas 01556 505 346 castledouglas@galbraithgroup.com Regional Agents Oban Nicky Archibald | 01631 700 205 Argyll Niall Macalister Hall | 01583 431 215 Stranraer Sheena Ramsay | 07468 049 387

Edinburgh

Argyll

Stranraer

Ayr

Galashiels Kelso

Castle Douglas

Galbraith is one of Scotland’s leading independent property consultancies, with expertise across a broad spectrum of property related services. We operate from 11 offices across Scotland, bringing our clients a wealth of experience in: • Residential estate agency • Property lettings • Commercial property sales & management • Estate, farm and forestry sales & acquisitions • Estates, farming & land management • Renewables and Utilities • Building surveying • Forestry • Sporting holidays

lettings Country, Town or City | Lettings & Management | galbraithgroup.com

Galbraith Landlord's Guide  

A guide for landlord's on our residential lettings service which is designed with flexibility in mind – to suit each client’s individual nee...

Galbraith Landlord's Guide  

A guide for landlord's on our residential lettings service which is designed with flexibility in mind – to suit each client’s individual nee...