Finding life as a Landlord more difficult than ever?
Don’t know what you can be doing to protect yourself, your asset and your tenant for the future?
Lockdown began back on the 23rd of March and since then it seems the whole world has turned upside down. In the world of property management, however, Landlords have responsibilities and legal obligations which cannot be avoided, especially in the midst of a global pandemic
Landlords managing properties themselves were already finding life tough adapting to regulation changes and new taxation laws, so I got to work on a few short guides to help Derbyshire Landlords and their Tenants get through this difficult time.
Communicate clearly and consistently with your tenant: I’d recommend opening a clear communication channel so that you can reassure your tenant if they have any concerns. I’ve been speaking with the tenants of our managed properties well before the outbreak started and any government guidance issued to us is being clearly passed on, so everybody knows their responsibilities. Keep records of communications in case you required them in future.
In times like these, you need to think two, three even four steps ahead. Get your brain to work thinking of potential red flags. What should I do if my tenant self isolates? The gas safety certificate is due, can the plumber attend? If I fall ill and a maintenance issue arises, who’s dealing with it? – Whilst these scenarios may not happen, you need to be ready for most eventualities. “Fail to prepare – Prepare to fail”
Use Technology to Your Advantage
Whilst you are unable to visit in person to conduct routine inspections, you can use apps like Zoom, Facetime and/or Whatsapp. Of course, there are legal safety checks that should be carried out on a property inspection so make sure you have a way to confirm these checks were conducted by the occupier.
The job retention schemes have gone a fair way to providing security to some, others have had their income significantly affected. If your Tenant has an exemplary payment record prior to the outbreak, I would advise being flexible toward rent collection. Some tenants, however, are taking deferred payment where it isn’t necessary, be careful to advise tenants of how that may affect them in the future. If you need any assistance protecting your rental income long term, get in touch, I’d be happy to advise.
I mentioned above, there are hundreds of regulations that must be followed as a landlord/letting agent in the UK. If you are self-managing and can’t name 10%, you’re in a truly vulnerable position. Use this time to get up to speed. Is your Landlord Insurance up to date, when is your next Gas Safety check due, what does FFHH mean?
Can I help you?
If you’re feeling a little overwhelmed, you’re not alone! I’ve had a lot of Self-Managing Landlords reaching out, asking what they should be doing.
Don’t Panic – Me and my team are here as always, to provide help and support to you and your tenant. We want to see that our industry is protected and better once we have safely navigated this tricky period.
Thank you for reading - Dan
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