Private Sector Landlords
As a Landlord you have certain obligations.
Respecting Your Tenants' Right To Privacy
You must let tenants live in their home without unnecessary interference. If you need to access a property to inspect it and to carry out repairs, you must first give your tenant proper notice if you wish to enter a property you are letting.
You have to give written notice and get a court order if you want to evict your tenants. If you wish to regain possession of your property it is recommended that you seek legal advice from a solicitor.
If the letting began on or after 15 January 1989, the leaflet called "Assured and Assured Shorthold tenancies - A Guide for Landlords" may be of assistance.
However, if you are sharing or are going to share part of your home, you should read the separate leaflet called "letting rooms in your home - A Guide for Resident Landlords". There is also a scheme that may be of interest called the " Rent A Room Scheme" which is an optional scheme that lets you receive a certain amount of tax-free 'Gross' income (receipts before expenses) from renting furnished accommodation in your only or main home.
Landlords are responsible for most repairs to a rented property. You are also responsible for keeping the equipment for supplying water, gas, electricity and heating systems in safe working order. If appliances and furniture are provided as part of the tenancy, then you are also responsible for their repair and replacement. All maintenance work to gas appliances, must be carried out by a Gas Safe registered engineer. Any electrical alterations must be carried out by a Part P compliant engineer.
If your tenant approaches you and informs you about an item of disrepair within their home, you should assess the works needed and arrange with the tenant a mutually convenient time to carry out the works as soon as possible.
Often tenants fail to mention disrepair to their landlords and it is advised that you carry out periodic inspections to identify any potential disrepair in the property (giving the tenant notice of your visit). Finding a problem early and rectifying it before it gets worse can save you money in the long run.
If after your tenant has notified you of any problems and you fail to act, they may then make a complaint about their housing condition to us. We will notify you of our visit and do an inspection of the property. If we find any hazards we will send you an informal schedule of works. Failure to carry out these works within a reasonable amount of time may result in us taking enforcement action and will also incur an administration fee.
Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMOs)
A property is a HMO if it is let as a main or only home to at least three tenants, who form more than one household and who share a kitchen, bathroom or toilet. This includes properties such as houses or flats shared by a group of friends or colleagues, bedsit type accommodation with shared bathrooms and bed and breakfast type establishments for person who have no other home.
The Housing Act 2004 introduced the licensing of HMOs. If you are thinking of setting up such a premises or purchasing an existing HMO then you should contact us for advice and to make your application before you begin to operate. An existing licence cannot be transferred. Alternatively you may wish to apply online by using the GOV.uk Licence for HMO application
If you fail to apply for a licence or allow a property to be occupied by more people than are permitted under the licence, a fine of up to £20,000 may be imposed. In addition, breaking any of the licence conditions can result in fines of up to £5,000.
We have to carry out a Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS) risk assessment on your HMO within five years of receiving a licence application. You must also carry out any works that are required as the result of a safety inspection.
Under the management of Houses in Multiple Occupation (England) regulations 2006 the owner or manager of any HMO with three or more storeys and with five or more occupiers which form two or more households and where there is some element of sharing of basic amenities, must:
- Give their contact details to the tenants
- Keep fire escapes clear and maintain fire fighting equipment and alarms
- Ensure that the property design and structure will not cause any injury
- Provide adequate supply of gas (if any) and electricity
- Provide adequate, uninterrupted water supply and drainage
- Check annual Gas Safety certification (if gas is supplied) and electricity safety every five years
- Keep the property and any shared gardens in good repair
- Provide suitable rubbish disposal
If you require any further information regarding Houses in Multiple Occupation please contact the Private Sector Housing team:
- Email: PSHousing@tendringdc.gov.uk
- Address: Private Sector Housing, 90 Pier Avenue, Clacton on Sea, Essex, CO15 1NJ
- Telephone: 01255 686617
Landlords Energy Saving Allowance
As a landlord you can claim the Landlords Energy Saving Allowance (LESA) of up to £1500 of tax relief per unit of accommodation if you make energy saving improvements to your property. Find out more from HM Customs & Revenues Website www.hmrc.gov.uk or the national Landlords Association www.landlords.org.uk or 0207 8408900.
If you require further information on any of the above please contact:
Telephone: 01255 686617
These Council departments also have information available for Landlords: