LANDLORD INFORMATION - HOMEQUEST PROPERTY MANAGEMENT, CORNWALL
SPECIFICATION OF PROPERTY
A visit will be arranged to view your property. At this time a detailed specification will be drawn up to enable us to match suitable tenants with your property. A recommendation for a rental figure will be given and agreed. Approximate figures for council tax and utility charges are always of interest to prospective tenants.
Your property will be advertised free of charge in the local press, on Facebook, Rightmove and our own website until a suitable tenant is found. We have found “To Let” boards a very useful way of advertising your property. They have proven to generate enquiries from prospective tenants and a bonus to landlords who wish to let their property quickly. We will use “To Let” boards wherever practical unless you specifically instruct us to the contrary.
The law requires landlords to carry out a basic duty of care before and during the renting of a property. The following matters will be arranged as necessary: gas safety checks, electrical safety checks, energy performance reports, fire safety assessments, etc. As part of our full management service, we will keep you updated with regard to any new legislation to ensure you comply with the evermore onerous legal requirements placed on landlords.
SELECTION OF TENANTS
All prospective tenants will be vetted for their suitability. Vetting will include personal interview together with the taking up of references and full credit searches on all applicants.
All viewings of properties will be accompanied. If you or any existing tenants are still living in the property, careful arrangements will be made to ensure that adequate notice is given.
The legal requirements involved with the drawing up of a tenancy agreement cannot be overemphasised. It is of vital importance to you that all the correct papers are served in the right order and at the right time to avoid lengthy and costly problems in removing tenants at a later date.
All tenants are required to pay a security deposit. As required by law, all deposits must be protected and Homequest have chosen The Deposit Protection Service - a government-approved scheme - as it does not incur any costs to our clients.
A detailed inventory of the contents of the property will be produced prior to commencement of the tenancy. Unlike many of our competitors, inventories for unfurnished properties are completely free of charge. The inventory will include a report of the condition of the property at the start of the tenancy together with detailed digital photography. Both inventory and condition report will be agreed with the tenants and then be used at the end of the tenancy when inspecting the property prior to refunding the tenants’ deposit.
UTILITY COMPANIES & METER READING
Homequest will read all utility meters and the change in tenant advised to each utility provider. It should be noted that telephone companies will only deal with the subscriber and therefore we must ask both you, the landlord, and the new tenants to deal with the relevant supplier direct.
When Homequest carry out their initial assessment of the property, a management fee will be agreed with you for the management service and this fee will be deducted from the monthly rent. We have a policy of no hidden charges. When comparing our fees with other firms, look very carefully at the small print – additional charges mount up. Our FIXED fee is all you pay.
Homequest maintains separate client accounts both for the collection of rent monies and the holding of security deposits. This way you can be assured that all money is handled correctly.
Prior to occupation by new tenants, a security deposit and the first month’s rental in advance will be collected. All funds will be cleared prior to allowing the tenancy to commence.
Rents are due on the first working day of each month and these payments are passed over to you without delay.
Income tax is payable on all income received by a landlord from let property. Where landlords are classed as resident outside of the UK, Homequest will help landlords register with HMRC so that there is no need for us to retain any tax as required by law. Monthly accounts will be issued to you showing all rent collected, together with any disbursements including Homequest’s commission.
Emergency repairs will usually be arranged on your behalf, up to an agreed limit. If you are still resident in the area, we will of course be more than happy to inspect and advise you direct with regard to emergency and running repairs, giving you the option of dealing with these yourself or asking us to arrange for a tradesman to attend. Homequest are able to recommend properly vetted and reliable contractors in order to assure you of value for money repairs.
Homequest will visit the property, when tenanted, approximately every three months to ensure that the tenants are complying with the terms of the tenancy agreement. We take appropriate action to rectify the situation in the case of non-compliance and a full written report will be compiled and sent to you. The property will always be inspected internally. Many other agents do not carry out this vital element of the letting process.
RENEWAL OF TENANCY
Two months prior to the end of the tenancy, Homequest will establish if you want to renew the tenancy or if notice needs to be given to the tenants. Homequest will make no charge for renewing the tenancy for a fixed term. The rental value will be reviewed when renewing the tenancy.
Homequest can provide information and arrange insurance cover whilst letting your property. Buildings insurance is of course a must but other policies such as landlord contents cover, legal protection and rent protection are available.
We would recommend that you arrange for the Post Office to redirect your mail to your forwarding address. Unfortunately, you cannot expect your tenants to forward mail for you. You can apply online at www.royalmail.com
As property professionals, Homequest Limited maintains full professional indemnity insurance.