At Macintyers we're proud to manage an extensive portfolio of rental properties. On this page you will find an outline of our lettings process, as well as useful regulatory information for landlords. Many of our landlords have been with us for a number of years - read what they say about us.
Macintyers is a thriving independent company giving local expertise and knowledge to the residential lettings market. We have prominent double fronted offices in Brackley and Middleton Cheney and our team bring over forty years experience and training from which our clients benefit.
Professionalism is demanded by today's landlords and Macintyers are members of ARLA, the Association of Residential Letting Agents, a government recognised professional and regulatory body solely concerned with residential lettings. ARLA members are governed by Principles of Professional Conduct, providing a framework of ethical and professional standards at a level far higher than the law demands. Therefore, landlords who use an ARLA agent can be assured that they are receiving the best and latest advise on all lettings matters.
Macintyers are also regulated by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, a professional body which places very high demands on the professional conduct of its members in all areas of its business. Letting your property will demand careful planning and as a major investment should only be entrusted to a professional agent who will look after your interests and optimise your investment.
As a landlord you will have responsibilities and this guide is designed to give you help and advice in this area and explain the services we can offer you. Whether you are an experienced investor or letting your home for the first time we are in the best position to let and manage your property.
The first stage towards letting your property is to meet with your chosen letting agent at the property for a ‘Market Appraisal Appointment’. We provide this service free and with no obligation.
First impressions count! If your property is presented well, it will not only achieve a higher rent but will also attract better tenants. It is important to ensure that the property is cleaned, that redecoration is carried out and carpets professionally cleaned where necessary, windows cleaned inside and out and the garden well tended. Macintyers can advise you on the level and type of furnishings, fittings, and appliances required and where redecoration or other improvements are required.
One of the first decisions to be made is whether to let your property furnished or unfurnished. From experience we find most prospective tenants are looking for unfurnished accommodation so this is how we generally advise you to let your property.
Unfurnished lettings generally include the following:
If you chose to let your property furnished then:
Garden maintenance is normally made the tenants’ responsibility and most tenants although rarely enthusiastic gardeners, are happy to maintain a small or medium sized garden. However, if your property has a large garden or requires specialist maintenance, we recommend that you employ a gardener to look after it during the tenancy with the cost of this being reflected in the rent.
Mortgage lenders - If the property is your usual residence and the mortgage is not a ‘buy to let’ loan, you must advise your lender and seek their permission before making arrangements to let. If you do not do so, they may be entitled to repossess the property and evict your tenants. It is rare for lenders to refuse permission, but you must ask them first.
Superior landlord/leaseholder - If the property is leasehold you should seek permission from the free- holders and notify them of your plans to let.
Insurance - A landlord is responsible for arranging insurance on the buildings and any possessions left within the property or outbuildings. The insurance should also include personal liability insurance to cover you, for example, if a flat that you let has a washing machine which floods and damages the flat downstairs. It is preferable for this insurance to be a specialist letting policy, as standard policies may exclude certain situations such as damage by tenants - even where the damage was unintentional.
You should notify all utilities and service providers that you are letting the property and request closure of accounts. Services should not be disconnected as this can cause delays and problems when managing the property. Tenants are usually responsible for Council Tax, Electricity, Water Rates, Telephone and Gas or Oil Supply and we will transfer these as part of our full Management services.
You will also need to make arrangements with the Post Office to forward your mail (we cannot forward mail without passing on the Post Offices charges).
Landlords should note that it is a legal condition of any tenancy granted that the landlord should keep in good repair the structure of the premises inside and out including decoration, gutters and drains. Also all installations supplying water, gas, electricity, oil, sanitation, hot water and space heating should be kept in working order.
Historically, residential property has proved to be an excellent investment. With values on average doubling every eight years over the last fifty years.
The abolition of rent controls, the landlord’s right to regain possession, the availability of tailored ‘buy to let’ mortgages at competitive rates, increased demand from a more mobile workforce and changing lifestyles have all contributed to a significant increase in the residential lettings market.
Property should always be viewed as a medium or long term investment. There are short term rises and falls in property values but over the long term, property has always performed well as an investment. To ensure your property investment is as good as it can be, it is important to buy the right kind of property.
Macintyers are able to provide all the expertise you need to ensure that you choose the right type of property to suit your budget and personal circumstances. We will advise you on location, local demand and rental values to enable you to achieve the most from your investment, as well as explaining all the legal, financial and tax issues, wherever possible.
In general terms, the smaller the property, the greater the rental return on your investment. One or two bedroom houses and apartments and three bedroom houses are ideal. Modern property is preferable from a maintenance point of view but a carefully renovated older property is fine. Good residential localities attract better tenants and demand is stronger for town rather that country property. Small studio apartments and bedsits are not ideal as there tends to be a higher turnover of tenants and a greater problem finding reliable, financially stable tenants.
At Macintyers Property Management we offer three levels of service to accommodate clients differing needs. Most landlords opt for our Full Management Service, although we also offer a Let and Rent Collection Service, and a Let Only Service for very experienced landlords.
Our full management service ensures that every aspect of the letting process is dealt with on your behalf and includes everything specified previously plus:-
We will organise for the transfer of utilities into the tenant’s name and on a day to day basis we will be the point of contact for the tenant should problems occur. We will also effect minor repairs and pay charges relating to the property provided we are in funds.
We will carry out regular visits to the property, usually every three to six months, to ensure that proper care is being exercised and check the condition. We will then report to you on maintenance required and arrange for this to be completed unless otherwise instructed.
We will also administer the renewal of the gas and electrical safety checks where applicable and at the end of the tenancy check the tenants out and advise on the apportionment of the security deposit in accordance with the TDRSA.
In addition to the let only service we collect the rent, usually on a monthly basis, pay this into the landlord’s designated account and provide a statement of account. If rent is not paid we will make immediate contact with the tenant and follow set procedures to collect arrears.
We will serve necessary notices and negotiate a new agreement where appropriate, reflecting rent increases if applicable. At the end of the tenancy you will be responsible for checking the tenant out of the property and we will disperse the security deposit when the landlord and tenant have reached agreement on dilapidations or in accordance of with the terms of the TDRSA.
We begin with a comprehensive on-site meeting with you to discuss your requirements, advise on current demand and rental levels, advise on your property’s presentation and relevant safety regulations and decide upon a marketing Strategy.
Marketing commences with your property being listed and advertised within our prominent office, on our website and in the local property press. Details are circulated to corporate and private tenants, viewings conducted and preparations for letting the property completed.
Once a prospective tenant has been found, and tenancy terms have been negotiated on your behalf, references are carried out which include credit checks. If these are satisfactory then the tenancy agreement and the inventory are prepared. Only once the tenant has signed up and paid the first month’s rent and security deposit, usually equal to one and a half month’s rent (which we hold under the terms of the TDRSA), can keys be handed over.
At this stage we hand over legal documents to you as the landlord and the tenancy, rent collection and management of the property, including compliance with safety regulations and the checkout become your responsibility.
As soon as Macintyers receive your written instructions to proceed, our lettings team will commence the process of finding a suitable tenant. Prospective tenants that are registered on our extensive database will be contacted. A description and photograph of the property will be distributed to prospective tenants and added to our property list and our macintyers.co.uk website, rightmove.co.uk and onthemarket.com. A selection of properties are displayed in the local press and in our office windows. Macintyers will continue this active line of promotion until a suitable tenant has been secured.
Macintyers invest heavily in press and internet advertising in order to generate constant enquiries from potential tenants.
Our high profile, strong reputation and innovative marketing generates considerably more enquiries than most other local letting agents. All this works towards getting your property let as quickly as possible.
The internet has become an essential tool in the marketing of rental properties. Most people moving home use the internet to search for property. Available 24 hours a day, prospective tenants can view homes that are currently available from wherever they are in the world. Because property lists can be updated daily and contact can be made online, the whole letting process is accelerated.
Our internet advertising generates daily enquiries from individuals, military personnel, companies and relocation agents.
A significant proportion of applicants are unsuitable as tenants either because of their financial situation, their age, or their inability to look after a property carefully. The success or failure of a letting agent rests on their ability to make the correct judgement of an applicant.
There is always an element of risk with letting, but an experienced agent will know when to refuse an applicant. The most appropriate type of tenant will also depend on the type of property and your own specific circumstances and requirements. Macintyers will discuss your particular needs in detail and strive to find the most suitable tenant.
Different landlords make different stipulations regarding what they will and will not allow. Typical exclusions include the following, but remember, the stricter you are, the more difficult it becomes to find a tenant:-
✔ No pets ✔ No smokers ✔ No children
When a tenant has been found we employ stringent referencing procedures which gives us an understanding of their personal and financial circumstances. When it comes to tenant selection we cannot guarantee to always get it right, but out of the many lettings with which we deal, we get very few problem cases.
Once we are satisfied with the choice of tenant, we will proceed with preparing the tenancy agreement.
Macintyers use a comprehensive tenancy agreement which has been carefully designed to protect your rights to possession, to control the tenant’s activities, ensure that you have redress if your property is not looked after carefully and comply with standard building society requirements. Tenancy agreements are normally for an initial term of six months and thereafter six/twelve months with your permission.
The Housing Act 1988 (as amended by the Housing Act 1996) specifies the types of tenancy and whilst there are several types, it is likely that the tenancy of your property will be an ‘Assured Shorthold Tenancy’
We prepare a schedule of condition/inventory for each tenancy. At the end of a tenancy the property is inspected and any damage or deterioration of the condition of the property is noted. The tenant is responsible for the cost of rectifying any damage caused by them at the property and this cost is deducted from the tenant’s deposit.
Please bear in mind that people will be living in the property and reasonable wear and tear must be taken into account. Depending on the length of time your property is let, you must be prepared for some redecoration and other work at the end of the tenancy.
We have staff on hand to deal with any maintenance issues, oversee any essential repairs and arrange payment of the contractor. Our prime concern is to ensure that the property is maintained on your behalf, in the same condition as that in which it was first let, allowing for fair wear and tear. When appropriate we will advise you of any improvements that may be needed in order to attract quality tenants. Unless you have preferred contractors, Macintyers will use one of a group of contractors who have proved their reliability and good workmanship.
Macintyers accounts team will ensure that rent is paid on the due dates and passed on to you as quickly as possible. They prepare statements of rental income and expenditure every month to ensure that you have full information for yourself and for your tax return.
The tenant pays rent into the Macintyers client account initially and this is then transferred into your account each month.
Our accounting complies fully with both the RICS and ARLA bylaws and our bonded client accounts are independently audited annually.
We carry out routine visits of the property about every three to six months. We do not carry out a survey of the property but do check that care is being taken and check the condition of the property. We then write to you on maintenance required and arrange for this to be completed unless otherwise instructed.
Although our tenancy agreements are usually for an initial term of six months or one year, many tenants extend their tenancy and in some cases stay for several years. Towards the end of the term of the tenancy we will contact you and confirm your instructions and then either serve notice on the tenant (minimum two months) or negotiate a new tenancy for a further fixed period. Occasionally no notice is served and the tenancy becomes “periodic” on a month to month basis. In this case the landlord can end the tenancy by giving a minimum of two months’ notice which must expire on the same day of the month that the tenancy commenced. The tenant can give one month’s notice.
The following information is intended only as a guide for landlords and should in no way constitute a detailed interpretation of the complete regulations. Whilst the regulations might appear onerous, they are designed to ensure the safety of the property and tenants. Landlords should note that the maximum penalty for non compli- ance with these regulations is a fine of £5000 or 6 months imprisonment.
These cover all gas appliances, flues, meters and associated pipe work and require landlords to get an inspection carried out by a Gas Safety Registered Engineer (formerly CORGI registered) to check any gas installations. Once the engineer is satisfied that the installations are safe, he will supply a Gas Safety Certificate, a copy of which must be held by the managing agent and given to the tenant before they move in. This certificate must be renewed once a year.
It is worth arranging the inspection before a tenant is found to avoid delaying the start of the tenancy. Breach of this regulation can result in heavy fines or even imprisonment so tenants are not allowed to occupy a property without a current certificate.
Landlords are also responsible for ensuring that either the operating instructions are shown on the appliance or that an instruction booklet is supplied.
This act covers all upholstery and upholstered furniture supplied by the landlord in a rented property, including; Beds, footstools, pillows, headboards, mattresses, sofa beds, futons etc. Furniture manufactured since 1950 cannot be supplied to a tenant unless it has been professionally re-upholstered with conforming materials. Compliant furniture will always carry a label indicating that it complies.
As a landlord you must be able to demonstrate that the fixed wiring electrical installation and any electrical appliances are safe.
There is also an obligation in accordance of Section 11 of the Landlord and Tenants Act 1985 to make the property safe. Supplying unsafe electrics in a rented property that result in injury or death could result in a landlord being prosecuted. To ensure that the electrical installation is safe our professional body, The Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA) recommend that before the property is let a competent qualified electrician, who is a member of one of the approved professional bodies, carries out a “electrical installation inspection report (EICR.)
Necessary updating highlighted by the “EICR” will need to be completed by a qualified electrician prior to tenants moving in and copies of certification provided to our office.
Periodic inspections of the fixed wiring installation will need to be repeated every five years. However, you will generally find that once an installation has been brought up to standard most will only require more minor improvements after five years to stay up to standard.
Portable appliances (usually defined as those that are plugged in) should be tested annually. Some landlords choose not to leave any portable appliances in their let properties, however not having appliances in the kitchen can make a property less attractive to tenants and increase void periods. As a landlord you are also responsible for ensuring that operating instructions are shown on appliances or that instruction booklets are left at the property.
All new homes (built after June 1992) must be fitted with mains operated smoke detectors. There are no specific regulations governing older buildings, however, Macintyers insist that at least one smoke alarm is fitted to each floor of your property.
This is required before marketing can commence.
If you are a landlord resident in the UK, your net income from your investment property is subject to income tax. The level of tax depends on your other income. If you are
already a higher rate tax payer, tax will be payable at the higher rate. The normal method of reporting your taxable income to the Inland Revenue is by a self assess- ment tax return. We strongly recommend that you instruct an accountant to advise you on the implications and allowable expenses before you start letting your home or buy a property to let.
The following deductions can usually be made from your rental income to arrive at the net income which is subject to tax:
The non-resident landlords (NRL) scheme is for taxing the rental income of persons whose ‘usual place of abode’ is outside the UK. If you are treated as a non resident land- lord you still have to pay UK income tax on rental income from UK property.
Unless the landlord can provide Macintyers with an exemption certificate from the Inland Revenue, we are obligated by law to deduct basic rate tax from rents received and account to the Inland Revenue on a quarterly basis. Exemption certificates are required by any person named on the tenancy agreement who lives overseas.
Landlords are responsible for obtaining their own exemption certificate and the appropriate forms should be submitted as early as possible as they take several weeks to process. The majority of landlords apply for and are granted an exemption certificate.
Details on taxation are subject to change and you should consult the Inland Revenue for the most up to date details. Further information for non resident landlords and owners tax advisor exemption application forms are available from Macintyers or the Inland Revenue at:
Centre for Non Residents Landlords
Fitz Roy House
P O Box 46
If you would like to rent one of our properties, we'll ask you to complete an initial application prior to referencing.
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