Property Rentals is an integral part of the complete property service provided by Bradleys Estate Agents and has been from early in the company’s history. As a result, a wealth of expertise and experience is offered, along with good old fashioned personal service.
Bradleys are very different from the average estate agent in that every office in the 33 office network engages in both sales and lettings. This enables Landlords to receive regular sales valuation updates and conversely Vendors can receive rental value advice, if required. However, each are backed up by a unique Property Management department, based in the Head Office to take care of the more complex issues of lettings.
Dedicated teams in head office are on hand to deal with the move in and vacate processes, property maintenance, accounting and arrears management.
A Bradleys Landlord can be assured of high levels of professionalism expected of a company that takes its responsibility as a custodian of a property in tenancy very seriously. This is sounded out by our membership of important trade bodies, such as the Property Ombudsman scheme (TPO), National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA) and the Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA), who’s stringent rules of membership are strictly adhered to.
In order for Bradleys to deliver its comprehensive letting service, we have aligned ourselves with a number of professional organisations to provide piece of mind and compliance with the minefield of legislation that affects the letting of a property. For example, all tenant deposits are registered with TDS (operated by The Dispute Service), extensive referencing of prospective tenants is conducted through an independent referencing agency, Van Mildert, in addition Gas Safe registered engineers and insured trades people are used to conduct required works.
It must be accepted that letting out a residential property is a speculative venture and despite best endeavours a tenant’s financial and personal circumstances can change, therefore Bradley have negotiated a Rent Guarantee and Legal expenses policy with Van Mildert at specially low premiums. The policy protects against loss of rent and the cost associated with the eviction process.
Prospective Tenants can also be assured that Bradleys up front application fees are not cost prohibitive and are in line with recommended guidelines. The charges are always made clear from the outset, so there are no nasty surprises.
Bradleys Property Rentals is yet another complete property service from Bradleys.
Demand for quality rented accommodation is high at present for property priced competitively within the market place. At Bradleys we offer a free rent assessment to advise you of a realistic rent and give specific advice relating to your property as necessary, for example, whether to let furnished or unfurnished and so on.
Your property will then be advertised in our local offices, on the very busy Bradleys website www.bradleys-estate-agents.co.uk and extensively on all major property portals, such as Rightmove, Zoopla and Radarhomes. Details are also circulated via our applicant register and to major institutions such as colleges, local firms, relocation companies, H.M. Forces. A striking TO LET board will be erected outside the premises to ensure maximum exposure.
Prospective tenants will be accompanied to your property following an initial interview to establish their suitability in the first instance. Should the applicant wish to proceed with a tenancy we will instruct Van Mildert, an independent and established tenant referencing company to carry out all reasonable steps to thoroughly research their background prior to the signing of a tenancy agreement. The Van Mildert tenant referencing process can be seen on their website www.vanmildert.net
Once your tenant has passed our comprehensive vetting procedure, an appropriate tenancy agreement will be individually drawn up. The type of agreement will vary according to the status of your tenant but in the main will be an Assured Shorthold Tenancy for a six-month term which, unless notice is served by either party, will continue into a month by month periodic tenancy.
Upon the signing of the agreement the tenant will pay rent in advance and a deposit of at least one month's rent plus one hundred pounds. This deposit is held to cover any breach of tenancy covenant on the part of the tenant.
Rent payments will be forwarded to you along with a detailed Statement of Account when we have clearance from our bank. Very occasionally, delays in payment are experienced as a result of tenants making a late payment or in the case of a returned cheque or payment. In both instances we would immediately pursue the tenant for the debt.
In the rare event that our structured debt collection fails it may be necessary to issue court proceedings for possession of the property and/or arrears. There are seventeen legal grounds for possession relating to Assured and Shorthold tenancies that cover many different issues, not just arrears of rent. Our specialist staff will advise you specifically on points of law as required at the time and will ensure the correct legal procedures are adhered to.
To avoid the expense of legal action against a tenant and the inconvenience of lost of rent, you may decide to protect yourself with Rent Guarantee and Legal Expenses Insurance. Bradleys have arranged specially negotiated rates for their Landlords with providers Van Mildert. Please ask us for more details.
As a landlord, regrettably all income received from rented property is classified as unearned income and is therefore subject to tax. However, there are some expenses that attract tax relief.
Overseas landlords should note that we are bound by law to deduct and retain tax at the basic rate before forwarding the balance, unless a valid tax exemption certificate has been received by our offices
In order to benefit from all allowances available we strongly recommend you consult a tax specialist or your local office of the Inland Revenue.
As a landlord you are responsible by law for most repairs and maintenance relating to the structure of your property. In addition you have legal responsibilities under the following legislation:
1) Fire and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) (Amendment) Regulations 1993. The regulations require that all soft furnishings, upholstery or upholstered furnishings - that includes beds, mattresses, pillows, settees, armchairs, scatter cushions, bean bags and so on - should conform and comply with the following three tests: The Cigarette Test, The Match Test and The Ignitability Test.
2) Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1994. These regulations place a requirement upon landlords of all rented property to have all gas appliances that are installed in rented property, checked and certified annually by a suitably qualified ‘Gas Safe’ registered engineer.
3) Electrical Equipment (Safety) Regulations 1994 These regulations state that all electrical equipment over 50 volts must be safe and also to satisfy requirements relating to sleeving of pins on plugs, colour coding main leads, labelling of cables and fusing information. Although the law does not say that the electrical equipment has to be tested, the best way to protect yourself from prosecution is to have all relevant appliances checked and certified by a suitably qualified contractor.
4) The Energy Performance of Buildings (England & Wales) Regulations 2012. These regulations were initiated in 2007 and amendments came Into force 2013. They state that all properties to be let must have a valid Energy Performance (EPC) in place. Bradleys can undertake this on your behalf using one of our fully qualifies Domestic Energy Assessors. Please ask for our scale of charges.
In addition to the above, when first letting your home you will need to seek the permission of your mortgage lender to let your home and to ensure your building and contents insurers provide adequate cover for rented property. In the case of leasehold property, you may need to request your freeholder’s permission to let as necessary. Again, we shall be pleased to give individual advice on such matters.
Deposits held on properties let on an Assured Shorthold Tenancy since April 2007 are required by law to be registered in one of four Government approved schemes. To avoid the financial penalties for failing to register to a scheme, Bradleys register deposits with TDS (The Dispute Service Ltd) at a significantly reduced cost to Landlords .
Please refer to the TDS leaflet ‘What is the Tenant Deposit Scheme’
Your local sales and lettings office will take care of the marketing of your property and undertake all tasks requiring local and personal representation throughout. However in support of our local office staff is an experienced team of property managers based at Bradleys Head Office. The head office team have nearly 150 years of specialist property and lettings knowledge between them.
This team carries out thorough and independent reference checks of your proposed tenant. They ensure all the relevant adminstration is in place and correct before your tenants take up occupation. For example, they will ensure the agreement appropriate to the proposed tenancy is executed, arrange safety certificates (as applicable), collect the required completion funds, and liaise with gas electricity & water companies, as well as council tax offices once the tenancy has been granted.
Inevitably maintenance issues will arise with your managed property. Our maintenance team has collated a comprehensive list of approved contractors, service providers and engineers holding professional credentials who are able to deal with a wide range of problems as reported. Each approved subcontractor is expected to adhere to a service standards agreement set by Bradleys, so we may ensure quality of service. Our maintenance team will liaise with you, as required, where maintenance issues are reported.
Using the very latest rentals accounting technology, this team will provide you with monthly statements of rents and expenses (for your managed let). They will pay contractors invoices or service provider’s accounts on your behalf, as and when required. In the unfortunate event missing rent payments are identified or arrears ensue, they will discuss the late or missing payment with tenants and use their best endeavours to resolve the matter amicably. In the rare event this is not possible, they will draft and serve statutory notices upon your tenants, having first sought your instructions on the matter.
When notice is received or served to end a managed tenancy, the vacate team liaise with all parties to ensure that any issues are minimised on move out day. They will compare the move in Schedule of Condition with the one undertaken at move out, to ensure the property is surrendered in a suitable condition. In the event there are proposed deductions from the tenants deposit they will seek to conclude the matter swiftly, to the satisfaction of all parties and in accordance with deposit scheme guidelines. If agreement can not be reached, they will provide support and guidance to refer the matter to an independent case examiner for arbitration.
This is a small insight into the complex and diverse field of residential letting which is governed by an increasing amount of legislation. With our specialist knowledge, experience and dedication, Bradleys endeavour to make your experience of being a landlord as trouble free as possible.
We also provide a Tenant Find Service.
The Van Mildert Rental Guarantee and Legal Expenses insurance is of excellent benefit and value.
The policy ensures that the returns on your property investment are not damaged by non-payment of rent and a costly eviction process.
|Policy term||Excess||Price (inc IPT)|
|6 Months||1 Months Rent||£90.00|
|12 Months||1 Months Rent||£125.00|
Please be aware of these important restrictions - or you may be unable to get the protection you need.
Full details of the policy, including the policy wording are available from www.vanmildert.net.
As members of ARLA (The Association of Residential Letting Agents, a division of the National Federation of Property Professionals, NFOPP), as well as full members of the Property Ombudsman Scheme for Lettings, Bradleys are bound by strict professional guidelines. In addition these professional bodies require Professional Indemnity and Client Money Protection cover to be in place for customer peace of mind.