Monthly Archives: September 2015

Updates on Right to Rent – and the impact on Bristol landlords

At City Rental Services we closely monitor and report back to our Bristol property landlords on issues and hot topics which could affect them and their property portfolios in Bristol.

And one of the biggest potential issues in recent months is the Right to Rent legislation currently being discussed across the country.

Advice on right to rent for Bristol property landlords from City Rental Services

From keeping an eye on latest commentary and industry articles on the topic, it appears that the Right to Rent debate is going to continue for some time.

Recent updates to the Right to Rent that Bristol property landlords need to be aware of include:

A new criminal offence –

This is expected to focus on repeat offenders and organised crime, carrying a maximum penalty of five years’ imprisonment. It’s also anticipated that only those failing to complete checks and end tenancies when instructed to by the Home Office should find themselves on the wrong side of the Law on this.

A new possession –

The Home Office has agreed that landlords need effective means of ending tenancies where a tenant is found not to have the Right to Rent. There will most likely be an amendment to the Housing Act 1988 to incorporate this.

A legal Home Office notice –

This will be a means to bring a tenancy to an end, where the Home Office determines the tenant doesn’t have a Right to Rent. This will involve the Home Office, not the landlord, serving notice to the tenant – subsequently, landlords will be able to service a notice on the tenant ending the tenancy.

There will be further minor amendments to existing Law on some of these points, to allow for concerns landlords have been voicing regarding the additional cost burden around removing tenants without a Right to Rent.

For example, it won’t be necessary to obtain a court order for possession, as the tenancy will no longer be an Assured Shorthold Tenancy with the new rues in place – although landlords may still elect to use court bailiffs to carry out an eviction where it is necessary.

This should serve to reassure Bristol landlords that the costs of evicting tenants without a Right to Rent will be minimised wherever possible by evolving legislation around this difficult and controversial area.

To find out more about our letting agency services in Bristol, simply call into 58 Gloucester Road to see us.

How will the removal of wear and tear allowance affect Bristol property landlords?

We came across an interesting and concerning article here at City Rental Services last week, with the news that the removal of the wear and tear allowance is having a detrimental effect on Bristol property landlords, and the nationwide buy-to-let sector as a whole.

advice on wear and tear allowances for bristol landlords from City Rental Services

According to research published by the NLA, and highlighted in this article more than half of all buy-to-let landlords will be affected by the removal of the wear and tear allowance.

Bearing in mind that 24% of all property landlords in the UK let their properties fully furnished, the new system coming into effect in April 2016 will cover the replacement costs of furniture and certain specific items.

Although the NLA has ‘broadly supported’ the new system, there are still concerns with some of our Bristol property landlords that scrapping the current allowance for a tax relief system will cost landlords more money overall in replacing and maintaining the furnishings and fittings of rented properties in Bristol.

We will, of course, be monitoring the changes closely for our landlords.

To find out more about our letting agency services in Bristol, simply call into 58 Gloucester Road to see us.

Was the Summer Budget positively focused on buy-to-let landlords in Bristol?

Here at City Rental Services, we like to keep an eye on industry legislation, so we’re better placed to advise and assist our buy-to-let landlords in Bristol.

A significant piece of Government legislation recently has, of course, been the Summer Budget – and it’s sparked a huge amount of debate in the lettings industry and Bristol rented property market in recent weeks.

advice for buy-to-let landlords in bristol from letting agency City Rental Services

We found a useful industry article here, covering a few concerns that the recent Budget would force private landlords and buy-to-let investors in Bristol to raise rents.

For us, as experienced independent letting agents in Bristol, there are two main areas of concern for landlords with the Summer Budget – namely:

  1. The restriction on ability to claim interest rate relief on the higher rate for taxpayers (40%) on buy-to-let mortgages
  1. The loss of 10% wear & tear allowance against income – in future, receipts must be available to prove that expenditure has been incurred

We’ve seen a number of legislative and financial attacks on buy-to-let landlords and property investors in Bristol during this year, and we’d advise all potential new private landlords and property market investors to seek professional industry advice before ploughing pensions pots into property.

We’re not accredited financial advisors here at City Rental Services, but we’re always happy to help and assist our private landlords in Bristol, and often find each week sees a number of our property portfolio landlords in Bristol popping in to see us and discuss the Bristol property market in depth.

To find out more about our letting agency services in Bristol, simply call into 58 Gloucester Road to see us.

Bristol landlords – is your rental portfolio covered for property damage?

It’s that time of year at City Rental Services, with the seasons changing and student tenants looking to the end of the Summer and the start of a new academic year in Bristol, that we consider various issues for private landlords across various BS postcodes – including covering property damage to rental portfolios across the city.

advice for property landlords in Bristol on property damage from lettings agency City Rental Services

We saw an interesting article here, highlighting an estimated 400,000 private landlords nationwide being apparently affected by property damage in the last 12 months.

Property damage can be a significant issue if the damage caused exceeds the value of a tenant’s deposit – this quickly eats into property profit margins.

There are simple steps that property landlords in Bristol can take to reduce the likelihood of sustaining property damage to their rental portfolios, such as:

  • Carefully vet all tenants before an Agreement is signed
  • Ensure that the home insurance policy cover is thorough
  • Talk to property management experts in Bristol such as CRS

It’s also worth considering the implications of void periods on rented property insurance for landlords, as well as carefully researching specific landlord insurance policies available on the market, to reduce the financial stress of property damage affecting a property portfolio during the remainder of 2015.

To find out more about our letting agency services in Bristol, simply call into 58 Gloucester Road to see us.