Are you a “NO DSS” Nuneaton landlord? It has long been a fear for many landlords that if they rent their property to a family in receipt of, what is now, universal credits then they are at higher risk of having problems with rent arrears. Not necessarily because of the individuals themselves but rather the system itself.
Propertymark have said “The design of the system with payments made in arrears makes paying rent on time impossible for many tenants and this presents issues for landlords who are relying on the rent to make mortgage payments.”
A Negotiator article recently reported that “at York County Court a judge found that the practice of turning away applicants because they are receipt of benefits unfairly discriminated against a single mum-of-two with a disability, on the grounds of sex and disability under the Equality Act.”
People should not be discriminated against because of their circumstances, I absolutely agree. I am also inclined to agree that the system MUST change to support & reassure landlords that renting their property to someone in receipt of Universal Credit is no higher risk than renting to a person in full time employment.
“NO DSS” will be “stamped out” says Shelter and no doubt hefty fines are headed in your direction if you do not adhere to it!
Are you thinking about investing in Nuneaton? Maybe you’re a pro investor and could buy properties in your sleep or, maybe like some people we’ve spoken to recently, you’re new at the property investing game?
Either way, I’m delighted to announce that we are venturing into property sourcing for investors and our services will include a basic “property source” right through to quoting and managing the refurbishment of your newly sourced property as well as property management at the end of the process.
We will be with you every step of the way. Either holding your hand (metaphorically speaking of course…thanks to COVID 19) through it all (if you need a bit more reassurance and support) or just provide regular email updates with photos of the progression so you know that things are being dealt with.
You’ll know from this blog that Mariam and I love property and are always keeping up to date with what’s going on in the local community (town improvement plans, new build sites etc) as well as the Nuneaton property market as a whole. So, if you want to use our property sourcing service for a property investment in Nuneaton, please feel free to get in touch and we’ll be delighted to find you the next gem in your property portfolio.
If you were going to buy or rent a house would you take the house based on a virtual tour?
My answer- Hell NO!
Before I bought my house I saw so many houses online and was sooo excited thinking, “yes this one is the one” then i’d go and view it and it wasn’t as big/nice as it looked and it just had a “bad” feeling to it.
Men reading this might think “pffft women and their feelings” but it’s so true. You either get a good or bad vibe about a house and you just can’t feel that when you look at photos or watch a video.
We have a managed property vacant at the minute and a nurse was looking to move to be closer to the hospital. She saw the video i did (which was awesome…obviously!) and loved the house. The landlord went and opened the door for her and allowed her to view the empty property alone. She got back to me and said that although it was lovely, she didn’t feel it was big enough for her and her family.
It’s not that i’m trying to pause the housing market any more than it has been but I want to be real about things and say, although the video tours might be helpful, I don’t think i could trust anyone who would buy or rent a house from a video tour. They’re a great additional tool to have to sift out the time wasters before booking viewings but I can’t imagine how many issues will arise from people taking properties from virtual tours alone….cringe!
What are your thoughts on this? I’d be very interested to hear from you.
Well, I don’t know about you but during lock down I’ve perfected the art of baking as well as Lego houses and sunbathing.
In all seriousness, I am working from home running my Lettings business as well as managing my own properties (and trying not to let my 5 year old become a tech monster!).
I have had several people contact me saying “my rental house is empty and i want to get a tenant in ASAP”. I shall share with you what I told them… If a house move is non-essential then it should be postponed until it is safe to do so. For example, if a person is in an abusive relationship and it would be a danger to life if they did not move, then that would be acceptable OR in a case that i dealt with, a family had a house fire and were living in a hotel. The hotel then closed due to COVID 19 and they would’ve been homeless had I not sorted everything out for them.
Even if you do have a prospective tenant in desperate need for homing, how will you go about doing a viewing, all of the paperwork, right to rent checks etc without breaking government guidelines?
The answer is- it’s possible but a longer drawn out process.
I manage a Facebook page called ‘Nuneaton Houses To Let For Sale or Wanted’ and we have had about 200 new members since lockdown and lot’s of people looking to move. I appreciate that people may “want” to move but if they don’t “HAVE” to move then they should stay put. I also appreciate, as a landlord, that we don’t want our property empty, however, given the circumstances I think it’s best that we stick to the guidelines.
In the mean time, go and check on your empty rental once a week/once every couple of weeks. Speak to the neighbours (from a distance) and pass on your number and ask them to get in touch if there are any problems.
It’s also the perfect opportunity to do a bit of maintenance/ painting. Spend a bit of time getting the house tarted up, ready for letting.
If you’re looking to find a tenant for your rental property after lockdown or want any advice on property rentals in Nuneaton, feel free to give me a call.
I don’t know about you but I’ve been doing a lot of home improvements over the last 10 days or so since we’ve been on lock down. I’m not looking to sell or rent my house, however, I thought this really is THE perfect time to get a house ready to sell or to rent.
You might be thinking “yeah, great idea but where can I get materials from?”. Well, I know our local Wickes store is doing a click & collect service and I would imagine that they are all doing the same countrywide. So, those scuffed walls that are looking worn and unattractive can be painted, that chipped and scratched worktop that is letting the kitchen down can now be replaced. You get my drift.
If your house was on the market prior to lock down and it wasn’t letting or selling, feel free to get in touch. We can arrange a video call, you can show me around and i’m happy to advise on those few improvements that could make all the difference!
I’m pretty confident that the property market is going to boom once we have come out of this pandemic so, lets get ready to sell or rent NOW!
Apologies for the delay in getting more blogs out. It turns out that working from home with a 5 year old isn’t easy…at all! However, he is currently entertained so I figured I’d get a quick blog done.
I’ve had a few questions come in from landlords and tenants and i thought i would share my findings with all of you as well…
Do i Still have to carry out the landlord gas certificate?
The short answer is YES.
“Landlords have a duty of care to their tenants. This is a legal duty to repair and maintain gas pipework, flues and appliances in a safe condition, to ensure an annual gas safety check on each appliance and flue, and to keep a record of each safety check.
The Gas Safe website say:
In the event you are unable to gain access to the property, e.g., refusal of access due to tenants self-isolating, or if you are unable to engage a registered gas engineer to carry out the work due to a shortage of available engineers, you will be expected to be able to demonstrate that you took reasonable steps to comply with the law. This will need to include records of communication with the tenant and details of your engineers attempts to gain access. You should seek to arrange the safety check as soon as all parties are available. For more information click HERE
What repairs do I HAVE to carry out during Coronavirus Pandemic/lockdown?
This is very much about common sense. Do you NEED to arrange for someone to go out and do the repair? (If not, don’t do it). Can it wait? (If so, just tell the tenant you will address is as soon as you can). Is it likely to be detrimental to the property or tenant if left unattended? (If so, find a suitable trades person, ensure they will adhere to the Health & Safety e.g. social distancing, wearing gloves & mask and arrange for the work to be done).
My tenant has asked for a “Rent Holiday”. How do i get this money back?
If your tenant asks for a rent holiday, you need to be understanding and sympathetic given the current situation we all find ourselves in. Agree a term (probably 3 months) that they can have a rent holiday and discuss repayment options. e.g. the 3 months rent they have missed will be split over 6 or 12 months and added onto their monthly rent amount.
Contact your mortgage company straight away (online is best) and request a mortgage holiday. They will most likely grant 3 months holiday and your ;missed payments’ will be added to the term and you will find that your mortgage repayments will increase as a result.
The important thing is to ensure you keep in touch with your tenant and be as clear as possible with how things will work. Try to keep things in writing so you can both keep records of everything. If they have a guarantor, please contact them to inform them (see if they are able to pay. If not, let them know that the rent payments will go up as a result and their obligations still apply).
That’s all for now folks. If you have any more questions, please feel free to get in touch and I will get them posted on here and share them far and wide to ensure as many of us keep afoot of the changes and our obligations.
So, i’m doing my best to retain some sanity whilst sat at home trying to run a business, home school my 5 year old, trying to block out the constant chit chat while i’m responding to emails and taking calls. It’s all good fun! I’m sure a lot of you are in the same boat (some of you will have the even bigger challenge of multiple children… enjoy!).
I’ve not been doing so many written blog posts on the Coronavirus because I’ve mostly been doing video blogs for landlords and tenants, helping them to decipher the vague announcements from the govenrment over the last few days. If you want to see any of the videos, please click here.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the last week, you will know that the government have announced that lenders will be offering a 3 month “mortgage holiday” to help relieve the financial pressures of those “impacted” by COVID-19. They also said that there will be a complete ban on evictions for the next 3 months to ensure that tenants are safe during this time of uncertainty. Both fair. Both necessary.
However, what was not made clear was what happens in the event that tenants cannot pay the rent and STOP paying the rent. The landlord may have the mortgage holiday but they have to pay this back eventually and are losing income in the mean time. Do tenants have to pay the lost rent back?
I have a couple of contingency plans in place in case this happens. If you would like to know what they are, please feel free to get in touch.
I know i’m a bit of a joker at times but, I just wanted to say that if any of you are feeling anxious or worried at this time about what will happen to you, your tenant or your investment property, please feel free to get in touch for a chat. I may not have ALL the answers but i’m hear if you need me.
If you do call, please excuse the noise in the background. It turns out that 5 years old aren’t particularly quiet!!
Whilst doing my usual trawl through On The Market, I noticed this gem pop up. Admittedly, I am not usually a massive fan of flats. I have several of my own flats and can’t say that they’re my favourite but I do have some at Simon Close (where this flat is for sale) and these flats are, BY FAR, my favourite! The management company are fantastic and the flats rent very quickly here.
This flat is on for offers over £80,000 but it has been on since December so I’m thinking there may be some flexibility here.
Lets look at the fun stuff… If you purchase the flat for £80,000 and the current tenant pays £500. The ground rent and service charges are £1210/year, which would leave you with a gross yield of 7.50% and a net yield of 5.99%.
However, I will share a little secret with you….I charge £525 for both of my flats at Simon close so, if the rent were to be increased, you could be looking at a gross yield of 7.88% and a net yield of 6.36%.
Not bad, ey!!!
If none of you snap this one up, I might add to my Simon Close collection!
If anyone is looking to have their Nuneaton Property managed or if you just simply want us to find you a tenant, please feel free to get in touch on 02477674545 and we’ll gladly help.
You may have read my blog last week about the clever clogs
who suggested that landlords provide a 3 month rent free period to their
tenants if they are unlucky enough to get the COVID-19 virus and just take the
financial hit (more like Thor’s hammer to the face!).
Well, I read today that lenders are looking to support their
clients by offering a 3 month holiday from mortgage payments if they are
affected by the virus. At the moment it is only RBS but other lenders are
likely to follow suit.
The article by “The Negotiator” states that “With the fallout from COVID-19 likely to last many months, and some experts predicting another financial crash, the speedy move will go some way to maintain confidence in the market.” I am inclined to agree with this and say “hoorah” to the sensible lenders who are good enough to support their clients…and the economy as a whole!
I hope this doesn’t affect any of our readers and I hope you
all stay safe and healthy over the coming weeks/months. Elbow bumps to all of
As a property manager, I have a lot of phone calls from tenants saying “my heating and hot water has gone off” and I reply with “what is the pressure gauge saying on the boiler?” and they respond is usually “the what?”. Obviously, I do my best to avoid sending out a plumber unnecessarily so i get the plumber to call them and talk it through if possible.
Today i came across a very helpful video from Jamie at Hydro Heat Plumbing and he explains why the pressures drops and how to re-pressurise the boiler yourself.
I’ll be sending this round to all of our tenants and landlords so i wanted to share it with all of you too. Watch the full video HERE.