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Landlords: don’t let fines wipe out profits

By Andrew Ellinas LL.B.Wednesday, 27 January 2016

Landlords: don’t let fines wipe out profits

The buy-to-let business in London is booming but landlords face fines amounting to thousands of pounds if they’re not on top of mounting new laws. The last few months have seen two new and very important regulations pertaining to privately rented property come into effect. Failure to meet them could see landlords face civil penalties of up to £8,000.

Smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors are now mandatory in every new tenancy - a legal requirement that is designed to prevent hundreds of deaths and life-altering injuries. If this new rule is not met by landlords, fines of up to £5,000 could be applied. Right to Rent checks are also a compulsory part of every new tenancy, with landlords responsible for checking every tenant’s right to legally reside in the UK. Failure to carry out these checks could lead to a penalty of up to £3,000.

Many landlords and property investors assume that, by side stepping a London property management specialist, they will save themselves money. In reality, not having a lettings professional at the helm of a buy-to-let leaving landlords susceptible to fines that could wipe out every penny of profit,” comments Andrew Ellinas, Managing Director at Central London letting agents Sandfords.

We expect the Government to come down hard on landlords who fail to meet the latest laws, which join an estimated 200 other rules, regulation and checks landlords have to comply with. Although property to rent in Central London is still an attractive investment, getting to the point of a legally-sound let and making sure it stays that way is becoming more complex.

Emphasis from 2016 onwards is expected to be on compliance and that’s where the role of a professional property manager comes in. Dedicated to the task of running profitable and legal lets, a property manager will have the industry knowledge, expert training, information on the latest lettings laws, implementation strategy and professional body affiliations to manage buy-to-lets successfully on behalf of landlords.

Yes, there is a fee attached to property management but breaking lettings laws carries hefty fines that can quickly overtake the cost of using a professional agent and even eradicate profits. If you’re not tuned into industry news, it’s quite easy to miss deadlines when new laws come into effect and it’s totally possible to miss new legislation altogether,” concludes Ellinas.

If you are considering purchasing a property for sale in Central London for buy-to-let purposes and would like advice on property management, please contact Sandfords today.


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