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    Abolishing Section 21!

    ABOLISHING SECTION 21!

    The Government’s levelling up Rental Reform white paper bill has included this in detail.

    Section 21, often referred to as the ‘No Fault Eviction’, has been a security blanket for landlords. If you as a landlord wanted your property back, then a Section 21 will guarantee you your property back.

     

    By abolishing the Section 21, this will no longer be the case. The tenant will be able to give 2 months’ notice at any time and the landlord must give a reason as to why they want the property back and that reason must be one of the grounds of a new updated Section 8 notice.

    If I look at the occasions we have issued a section 21 over the last 30 odd years (and there really has not been that many), 95% of the time, it was because the tenants were in rent arrears, the landlord wanted to sell his property or the landlord wanted to move back in. The new Section 8 notice will have additional grounds to cover these reasons.

    There are additional caveats to these. If you decide you want to sell the property and give the tenants notice, you must prove it was on a portal for sale and if your situation changes and you decide to put the property back up to rent, then there must be a gap of 3 months between the tenants.

    If you are seeking possession because the tenant is in the minimum 2 months of arrears and they decide to pay a nominal amount that takes them under the 2-month threshold the day before court, then you will not regain the property (as it is now), however, if the tenant does this 3 times in 3 years, the court will give the property back.

    Feeling deflated? Exhausted with all the changes? Then let us take care of your property needs. We promise to hold your hands throughout this process, giving you less stress and more free!

    If yancy an informal chat any time, then email me sharon@moveon.biz with your phone number.

     

    Sharon

    Blog Articles

    NEW RENTAL LEGISLATIONS – HERE WE GO AGAIN!

    Goodness me, blink and you could be forgiven for missing more changes within the rental legislations.

    On the 16th May 2022 with immediate effect, properties with two or more domestic dwellings must have a fire risk assessment by a ‘Responsible Person’, whether they have a communal area or not. This could simply be a house that has been converted into two flats. The risk assessment must include the buildings structure such as floors and ceilings and internal walls as well as external fixings such as cladding or balconies.

    From 1st October 2022, carbon monoxide alarms will be required in rooms with combustion appliances include gas and oil appliances (except gas cookers). The additional amendment also requires the landlord to repair or replace the alarms once the landlord has been informed of a fault. This will apply to all new and existing tenancies.

    On the 15th June 2022, the Government released the Renters’ Reform Bill White Paper, which has a shopping list of suggested changes in the 86 pages! Abolishing Section 21, no initial fixed term tenancy, no tenancy renewals, banning of children, pets and people on benefits to be outlawed, a new Landlord Ombudsman and loads more. Before rushing to us to sell your property, please note a ‘Bill’ is a proposal to change an existing law and debated in Parliament prior to Royal Ascent. Due to the complexities of the proposals, we will be probably looking at least 12 months for this to go through.

    Feeling deflated? Exhausted with all the changes? Then let us take care of your property needs.

    If you wish to know more on the new fire risk assessments that are now in force, please email sharon@moveon.biz for a more detailed report.

    Sharon

    Right to Rent Checks Advice for Landlords Blog Articles

    Right to Rent Changes 2022: What You Need to…

    Changes to how tenants can prove their Right to Rent in the UK are just one example of the many legislative changes for the lettings sector in the last few years. These frequent right to rent changes can make it difficult for landlords to know how to keep up and keep their rental properties and tenancies compliant.

    Right to Rent Checks Advice for Landlords

    Right to rent legislation for landlords and agents from the UK government has changed multiple times over the last couple of years, particularly throughout the Covid-19 pandemic. But what are the newest changes and how can you make sure you’re doing the right thing? That’s where we come in. Check out our list of frequently asked questions from landlords on Right to Rent checks below…

    Got more questions? Our Landlord Compliance Guide has everything you need to know about the latest legislation changes for rental properties in England.

    Compliance Guide for Landlords 2022

    Download the full guide for FREE here.

    What are right to rent checks?

    Right to Rent checks refer to mandatory checks that landlords in England need to carry out on all prospective tenants. This includes those subletting or those taking in lodgers, and the checks are to ensure that all tenants have the right to rent in England before entering into an agreement. The idea of these checks was introduced after the Immigration Act 2014.

    Checks include verifying the identity of your tenants through physical or online government documents and checking their right to reside in the UK through these.

    Generally, to have a right to rent in England means tenants:

    • Are a British Citizen
    • Are an EEA or Swiss National
    • Otherwise have a ‘Right to Rent’ in the UK

    Who needs to be checked?

    All prospective tenants and permitted occupiers over the age of 18 should be checked before a let is agreed.

    These checks must also be followed up on any renewal of tenancies in the case that a tenant’s residence permit or visa expires during the tenancy. They must also be carried out on any children included in a tenancy upon renewal if that child has turned 18 throughout the tenancy.

    What documents can you use?

    The government guidance on which physical documents can be checked changed at the beginning of April 2022.

    Currently, for UK and Irish citizens, right to rent can be proven with either a UK or Irish passport or a combination of two other examples of photo I.D (such as a UK driving licence and birth certificate).

    For EU and international citizens who hold residency in the UK (for either a time-limited period or unlimited period), checks now need to be completed using the UK Gov’s online checking service. This uses the tenant’s date of birth and a share code that they must provide to you.

     

    The official UK government guidance (plus accessible versions) can be found by clicking here.

    What are the Right to Rent changes?

    Until 6th April 2022, Biometric Residence Permits for international citizens were still valid to be used as I.D documents for right to rent checks, however this has now changed.

    Anyone who is not a UK or Irish citizen must now use the government online checking service and provide a share code and their date of birth to their landlord or agent for the check to be completed.

    Later this year the UK government are hoping to also replace physical document checks for UK and Irish citizens so everything will be digitized. There are introducing new technology called IDSPs that citizens will be able to set up and verify their identity remotely. However, these are still in development, and we can’t be sure when they will be released for general use yet.

    Conclusion

    Landlords are facing fines of £3,000 per tenant for not completing these checks (or having a managing agent complete them), so it’s incredibly important to ensure these checks are carried out properly.

    Feeling overwhelmed? You’re not alone!

    Our property management packages could be the solution you’re looking for. We take care of everything, including checking your new tenant’s right to rent. Or, if you’re still not sure, you can download our free guide for landlords on the most important pieces of compliance you need to keep in mind in 2022.

    Download your free guide here!

    For more information on tenant’s Right to Rent, visit the GOV.UK website: https://www.gov.uk/check-tenant-right-to-rent-documents

    Blog Articles

    Rents Have Risen!

     

    The past 18-24 months have seen a massive increase in rental prices throughout the Poole and Bournemouth area.

    We are valuing rental stock, new and existing, with huge increases and properties are being successfully let at the new prices.

    Prior to the last couple of years, rents had remained static, but when Covid came and we saw an increase of out-of-towners looking for properties with gardens, this caused a huge demand and saw the rental prices going up.

    We are also seeing a lack of stock coming to the market, which again is increasing the rental prices.

    As a tenant, this is not good news, as we now have an increase in energy prices, fuel prices and cost of living being added on.

    Contrary to popular belief, many landlords are not making vast amounts of money on their rental properties and expect their investment to help them in their retirement years. Those landlords who are already retired, will also be impacted on the cost of living going up.

    It is always a hard decision for landlords to increase rentals when they have had long-standing tenants, this is where Move On can help, by being the negotiator between all parties, in an amicable way.

    At Move On, we make sure all our landlords can sleep at night, because this is what we do every day. We make sure we are always up to date with latest legislations, and we are often ahead of the deadline.

    If you would like a free up to date rental appraisal or fresh eyes over your paperwork to ensure you are compliant, then please contact me 01202 711169 or email sharon@moveon.biz

     

    Sharon

    Tenant FAQs

    Frequently Asked Questions for Tenants

    Frequently Asked Questions for Tenants

    Renting a property as a tenant, whether for the first time or not, can be confusing. The laws and legislations for tenants, landlords and agents are constantly changing, so it’s important to know your rights and responsibilities with each tenancy. In this section of frequently asked questions for tenants we hope to answer some of the most common questions we receive from applicants and tenants.

    Got a question we didn’t cover? Let us know via email.

    Applying for a Property

    • Income confirmed at 2.5x yearly rental amount (for example, if the asking rent on a property was £750PCM, tenants would have to confirm yearly income of £22,500 per annum (750.00 x 12 x 2.5) (OR can provide a homeowner guarantor with income 3x yearly rental amount)
    • No adverse credit (CCJs, IVAs, etc. (OR if minor adverse credit, can provide a homeowner guarantor with income 3x yearly rental amount)
    • Right to rent in the UK (find the UK Gov Right to Rent Guide here for more information)
    If you’re self-employed, our referencing company will be looking at your last year’s tax return information to prove your income, and this will need to be 2.5x the yearly rent as stated above. If you’ve been self-employed for less than a year, or fail to provide this information, you will most likely be asked to provide a homeowner guarantor for your application to be able to pass
    No matter what your credit situation, it’s vital that you disclose any adverse credit BEFORE you apply for a rental property. You will usually be asked to disclose this when booking your viewing. Your credit profile WILL be checked when going through referencing. If you are untruthful and are found to have adverse credit that you did not disclose, this is usually an automatic 'Unacceptable' referencing result. Depending on the severity of your adverse credit (e.g. if you have an IVA or if you have satisfied any CCJS), you may be able to pass through referencing with or without a guarantor However, again it is vital you disclose this to us before continuing with an application so we can find the best option for you.
    Paying rent upfront for the duration of a tenancy is certainly an option if there is another reason why you are not able to pay monthly This would have to be agreed between yourself, us as the agent, and the landlord before it is accepted For example, if your monthly rent was £750PCM and you wanted to pay upfront for a tenancy of 12 months, this would be a total of £9000 upfront. This does NOT include your deposit. Despite paying upfront, you will still be asked to go through a referencing process, which will include previous landlord references, income references and a credit/background check.
    Our referencing process is nothing to be worried about! It's used to ensure that applicants are able to afford the rent on a property and that they are a suitable tenant. Our referencing checks include use of banking data (which you can opt in or out of), credit and background checks, previous landlord references and income checks (employment status & salary).
    A guarantor is someone who agrees to be named on a tenancy agreement and is liable for the rent should a tenant be unable to pay.
    A guarantor would need to go through much of the same process as a tenant when going through an application. Guarantors would need to provide up-to-date photo I.D and proof of Right to Rent in the UK They would also need to complete a referencing process, proving their credit history, background check, previous landlord reference and employment/income. Guarantors need to prove their identity by bringing the original copy of their photo I.D into the office before keys can be handed over to a tenant Guarantors also need to read and sign the tenancy agreement before keys can be handed over
    Each property that we rent, and each landlord, is different. This means that whether or not pets may be accepted is dependent on many things. It can depend on the lease the landlord has on the property, the size of the property, the type and breed of the pets in question, etc. When you find a property you're interested in, feel free to ask on your enquiry whether pets may be accepted. Some landlords may agree to have pets in the property but for a slightly higher rental amount, so it is always worth an ask!
    For all our rental properties, the deposit is calculated as 5 x the weekly rental amount. For example, if the rental amount was £750PCM, this would be calculated as 750.00 x 12 (yearly rent) divided by 52 (weekly rent) x 5 = deposit of £865.00
    When you rent a property, your landlord and agent puts trust in you to keep the property in a good condition. A deposit is held to ensure that any damages (over and above fair wear and tear) can be corrected at the end of the tenancy.
    At Move On, we can offer a Nil Deposit Scheme that allows tenants to pay a lower 'check-in fee' rather than a full deposit to lower the costs of moving. For more information on this, please get in touch.
    As a general rule, we like to allow at least two weeks between the signing of holding deposit documents (the first stage of an application) and a move in if a property is ready at that stage. This allows us and you plenty of time to complete the application and get everything ready. HOWEVER, this is dependent on the property itself and when it has been advertised as 'Available From' It may be the case that the property is not available until a specific future date, but your move in date will be agreed between yourself and our negotiators on your application.

    Living in the Property

    Unless stated in the advert or at the initial stages of an application, bills are not included in the rental of a property However, usually bills are included in HMO rooms! The arrangement and payment of bills such as council tax, water, electric, gas and broadband are your responsibility as a tenant (unless otherwise stated in your rental agreement). You will be responsible for ensuring your bills are paid fully and on time. At Move On, we partner with a company called Just Move In. Just Move In provide free services for tenants and movers in that they will alert utilities providers (such as the council, etc.) that a new occupier has moved into the property, so you won't need to worry about this. Just Move In also offer a complimentary Home Setup Service which includes a setup call with yourself and they will assist you (for free!) to help set up your tariffs and bills. For more information on Just Move In and how it works, click here or email us on enquiries@moveon.biz with your questions.
    This depends on the type of repair. If damage was made by yourself, you will most likely be responsible for fixing the issue (but make sure you tell your letting agent and/or landlord if anything happens in the first instance before trying to repair anything yourself!) In general, the landlord is responsible for maintaining the property in a good state of repair. They will either take care of this directly, or do so via an agent like Move On. When you sign your tenancy agreement, make sure you know who to go to when there’s an issue throughout your tenancy.
    Please do not make any decorative or other changes to a property you are renting without express written permission from the landlord. You are welcome to ask this question of your landlord at any time, either to them directly, or through the managing agent such as Move On. If you do receive permission to make changes to a property, we recommend keeping a dated record of this (i.e. an email) in case there is a dispute at the end of the tenancy regarding the change made.
    If you are in a fixed term tenancy, you are liable for the rent on the property until the fixed term is over. If you are on a periodic (rolling) contract, your tenancy agreement will detail the steps you need to take and notice you need to give if you'd like to vacate the property.
    Blog Articles

    MINIMUM EPC RATING TO CHANGE IN 2025?

    The Government is in current consultation to bring forward the change in EPC ratings from E to min ‘C’ from 2028 to 2025.

    With climate change being a prominent factor in the news at the moment, the government is keen to do their bit.

    From 2025 all new builds will be banned from putting in gas boilers to drive us away from gas as a carbon-based fuel. They are looking to replace these boilers with a heat source air pump.

    The government introduced a ‘Green Homes Grant’ in September 2020, where they would pay two thirds of an invoice and the public paid one third with a cap of £5000. However, this was closed on 31st March 2021 due to various hitches and lack of skilled workforce. There is talk of them looking at another type of grant– let’s hope so!

    Landlords will not be able to issue new tenancies unless their property is rated ‘C’, just like we did with the current system when they banned F and G ratings from the rental sector in April 2018.

    The older the property, the more likely you are to be a D or E. I would highly recommend you looking at your current EPC and seeing if you have a potential rating of ‘C’ and what the recommendations are on how to achieve this.

    If they insist on landlords upgrading properties to the pump system, this could have a negative impact on the rental sector as it just wouldn’t be affordable for many landlords and the return on investment could take several years to recoup! As they say, ‘watch this space’.

     

    Have a good week!

    Sharon Canning

     

    If you would like a friendly, no obligation chat regarding buying, selling, renting or investing in property, then please email sharon@moveon.biz   or telephone 01202 711169.

    Blog Articles

    Possession Notices Back to Pre-COVID Length

    When COVID hit us back in March 2020, none of us had any idea of the impact this would have on our lives and how every sector would be affected – good or bad (there are always winners and losers after all).

    As it became apparent that COVID was going to be around for a while and many people furloughed, the Government deemed it necessary to bring in additional measures to stop any tenants being evicted from their homes, especially as there was nowhere to go: hotels, etc. were all closed.

    The extension of the possession notices from 2 months to 6 months caused huge ramifications to landlords who already had tenants in rent arrears.

    Some landlords have been incredibly generous to their tenants where COVID had an impact, and either came up with a payment plan or, in some cases, gifted a month’s rent.

    There will always be people who like to use the system, thankfully this is not the majority of tenants.

    The government then confirmed that, from the 1st of October, possession notices would revert to as they were in to pre-COVID times, meaning landlords can now give their tenants 2 months’ notice to vacate the property through a Section 21 notice for the time being. Section 8 notices have also reverted to pre-COVID rules.

    If you need help or advice on your tenancy management then please do not hesitate to contact us. We are not just good; we are amazingly good!

     

    Have a good month!

    Sharon Canning

     

    If you would like a friendly, no obligation chat regarding buying, selling, renting or investing in property, then please email sharon@moveon.biz   or telephone 01202 711169.

    Blog Articles

    Rental Market Update: Bournemouth and Poole

    You couldn’t miss headlines throughout 2021 of the increase in sales property prices. However, news on lettings and rental prices has not been as common.

    The last three or four years have seen the rental market pretty static, but this has dramatically changed over the last 12-18 months. Tenants are staying longer in their properties, which in turn means there are less properties coming to market. This has created a shortage and pushed prices up.

    Gardens have been very much sought after and this has seen an uplift of hundreds of pounds in monthly rentals, which is adding thousands to yearly totals for landlords.

    So how does a landlord approach this with their existing tenant, especially if they have been long-term and good tenants? This is where a letting agent should shine and act as negotiator between the two parties. Most tenants expect a yearly increase in their rent, but when a significant increase, this can cause distress to the tenant.

    We have successfully negotiated larger-than-normal rent increases with our tenants, giving our landlords that extra revenue.

    It is important for landlords to keep up repairs and maintenance of their properties as this also has an impact on not just the amount of rent that can be achieved, but also the quality of the tenant.

    Rental properties are a business for landlords and not a charity. You can still be a great landlord and go the extra mile but, at the end of the day, the money left in your hand impacts your living standards. Tenants will always look at the market to see if there are properties better and cheaper for them, this is where we need to make sure it is a win-win for both sides.

    If you would like us to help negotiate a rent increase with your tenants then please phone for an informal chat.

     

    Have a good month!

    Sharon Canning

    For more information or help with your rental property, email sharon@moveon.biz   or telephone 01202 711169 today.

    Blog Articles

    Selling Tenanted Properties

    Selling Tenanted Properties

    Why being a specialist in selling tenanted properties is important versus the general high street agent!

    Over the years, we have sold many tenanted properties and we are very successful in doing this. We understand the lettings industry compliance side and because of this we know and understand why it is important to get it right from day one.

    Selling tenanted properties is a win-win for all parties involved. The seller, the buyer and the tenant!

    THE SELLER

    The Seller wants to sell the property with the tenant in situ normally for a couple of reasons. They have long standing tenants and do not want to disrupt their lives or the seller may have a mortgage on the property that would be financially difficult to cover if they were to sell the property empty.

    Solution – selling the property with the tenant in situ will mean receiving rental income up to the day of completion.

    THE BUYER

    Dependent on the experience of the buyer, there can be some anxious moments. Typically, a new landlord will have the following questions:

    1.      Will I really achieve the rental amount being quoted by the agent?

    2.      How long will it take until a tenant can move in, how long will my void period be?

    3.      What kind of tenant will the property attract?

    Solution – buy a property with a tenant in situ and receive rent from day one. You will meet the tenant, you will know exactly how much rent you will achieve and you should receive a rental statement showing them paying their rent on time each month.

    THE TENANT

    The tenant will automatically be worried as soon as the property is advertised. They will worry they will have to leave their home, they will worry about being made homeless. The lack of security may persuade them to move out as soon as they find somewhere, leaving the seller with no rental income.

    Solution – Liaise with the tenant, work with the tenant, be transparent and let them know an investor is being sought.

    When all sides work together, the outcome is a win for sellers, a win for buyers and a win for the tenants.

    COMPLIANCE

    Because we have sold so many, we also know that it is absolutely vital to make sure all paperwork is in order at the beginning and our expertise can help ensure the smooth process of a completion, with hopefully no nasty surprises down the road. We will look at the tenancy paperwork and the compliance certificates along with proof certain paperwork were issued to the tenant at the correct times including the prescribed information and Deposit certificates. If the paperwork is not in order, this can cause fines later down the road or unable to gain possession of your property if the need arose (for example the tenant not paying their rent).

     

    ABOUT US

    Move On Sales and Lettings area multi-award winning agency and have been established for 15 years under the ownership of Sharon Canning. Sharon became a landlord at the age of 19 and has worked in the real estate industry for 36 years and personally owns a portfolio of properties that also include HMO’s and Service Accommodation/Holiday lets. Selling or buying to live in or rent out is Move On’s speciality.

    Blog Articles

    £30k FINE IF YOU DO NOT HAVE AN ELECTRICAL…

    £30k FINE IF YOU DO NOT HAVE AN ELECTRICAL CERTIFICATE

    LANDLORDS! If you are with an agent or self-managing, please, please, make sure you have an electrical certificate on your rental property.  This became a legal requirement on the 31st March 2021.

    I was shocked to receive a call from a landlord whose property was being managed by another local agent (they will remain nameless). She was ringing me to ask if she could transfer over to me, as she was not happy with the service she was receiving. In these conversations, I also ask them to check their terms of business for giving notice and then go through details of their property. During our chat, she advised she had received an email that week (middle of April) to let her know an electrical certificate was due on the property, I nearly fell off my chair. Why was the agent notifying her mid-April when it should have been done by the end of March 2021? I then had to advise her that they had opened her up to a possible £30,000 fine by not having one in place. She was NOT aware of this!

    Needless to say, we are taking over the management and ensuring she is legally compliant.

    If you are not sure, (you should have received a copy of the certificate) please email/phone your agent today and make sure it is in place and if you are self-managing, please get it done IMMEDIATELY! If you have not been able to gain access because your tenant is shielding, then as long as you have a paper trail of this, you should be okay, but you do need to prove this if you get a knock on the door!

    If you would like a friendly chat, then please email me on sharon@moveon.biz with your contact details and I will happily ring you back.

     

    Remember a good agent is worth every penny when you know you can sleep peacefully at night.