Our services range from ‘Let only’ where a suitable tenant will be found, references will then be checked to give you peace of mind and we will provide a short hold tenancy contract. If you prefer we will manage the tenancy for you -we will find a tenant, check references, check all safety aspects and provide a 24 hour maintenance contract. As an independent company we are also able to offer a part – managed service if there are some aspects you would rather Anne James Lettings handle.
SpecialistsWe are a local, independent company specialising in Residential Lettings and Property Management and we are fully focused on the priorities and needs of the landlord.
We understand that letting your property can be a worrying experience and with this in mind our most important consideration is providing you, the landlord with the best possible service . We never forget that the property is your most important asset and we can confidently assure you that by instructing us to act as your agent your asset will be in professional and caring hands.
Personal ServiceAnne James is a name that has been involved in the local property market for over 25 years and as we are an independent company, we are able to offer a personal and friendly service, whilst at the same time maintaining a very high standard of competence and professionalism.
Competitive RatesOur fees are competitive and may be open to negotiation dependent on the level of service you require, we are happy to adapt our service to suit your needs. We are also able to offer investment Landlord savings on the smallest of portfolios.
Carefully Selected Quality TenantsDrawn from a continually updated register, all prospective tenants are interviewed, thoroughly referenced and credit checked, as an independent company we quite simply work on the basis, would we rent our own property to this tenant. In some cases we will also require a guarantor for rent should we feel this beneficial to you the Landlord.
Out Of Hours ServiceFor our initial meeting with you we will if necessary be pleased to visit your property outside normal office hours, at a time that is convenient to you, aimed at fitting in with your busy schedule.
Insurance for LandlordsRentshield can offer a range of competitively priced insurance products designed specifically for landlords, providing extra security and peace of mind. These include:
- Rental Guarantee Cover
- Legal Expenses Cover
- Contents Insurance
- Buildings Insurance
- Emergency Repair Service
Please ask for further details.
UK-Wide NetworkIn addition to our local services, we are part of a UK-Wide Network of independent but associated Letting and Managing Agents, thus enabling us to offer an efficient national relocation service, and are often able to assist both individual and corporate clients, from within the UK.
Levels of Service Offered
A Tailored ServiceOutlined below are the three basic elements of our service. However, we maintain a flexible attitude, and are generally able to adapt our services to meet our client's individual circumstances and needs, for example by providing a part only service, or occasionally by taking on additional tasks and duties on your behalf.
Full Management Service - Leave Everything to UsThis is our Inclusive Service, which provides for the marketing of the property and carrying out viewings, leading to the introduction and vetting of a prospective tenant. This proving satisfactory, we will then go ahead and prepare the tenancy agreement, and if required an inventory / schedule of condition (see scale of fees for charges) The tenant will then be checked in against the inventory.
During the tenancy we carry out periodic inspection visits. Should these bring to light any maintenance issues, we will (within the confines of our Management Agreement) recommend, oversee and account for any necessary repairs.
Collecting and processing of rental payments is also part of our service. These will be credited automatically to landlord’s nominated bank account.
Towards the end of the tenancy, we will liase with the tenant, and renew the tenancy agreement or arrange to check them out as applicable.
This service is suitable for those Landlords who are not residing locally, or would rather not deal with the tenants directly, preferring all aspects to be handled by us.
Letting Only Service - Find Me a Quality TenantOur Letting only service includes marketing of the property and carrying out viewings, leading to the introduction and vetting of a prospective tenant. This proving satisfactory, we will then go ahead and prepare the tenancy agreement, and if required an inventory at an additional cost.
Following this, the first month's rent and security deposit will be collected; these will be credited to the landlord less our agreed fee. Managing the tenancy, including the maintenance and rent collection, will then be the responsibility of the landlord.
This service is suitable for those landlords wishing to take an active part in the rental of their property.
Rent Collection ServiceOur rent collection service, which provides for the marketing of the property and carrying out viewings, leading to the introduction and vetting of a prospective tenant. This proving satisfactory, we will then go ahead and prepare the tenancy agreement, and if required an inventory / schedule of condition (see scale of fees for charges) The tenant will then be checked in against the inventory.
Collecting and processing of rental payments is also part of our service. These will be credited automatically to landlord’s nominated bank account.
The landlord is responsible for Inspections and will deal direct with the tenants for all repairs for the property.
General Practical and Legal Issues
Preparing The Property For RentalWe have found that a good relationship with tenants is the key to a smooth running tenancy. As Property Managers this is our job, but it is important that the tenant should feel comfortable in their home, and that they are receiving value for their money. It follows therefore that a well presented and maintained property in a good decorative order will go towards this, whilst also achieving a higher rental figure. Tenants are more inclined to treat such a property with greater respect.
General ConditionElectrical, gas plumbing, waste, central heating and hot water systems must be safe, sound and in good working order. Repairs and maintenance are at the Landlords expense unless misuse can be established. Interior decorations should be in good condition and preferably plain, light and neutral.
FurnishingsYour property can be let fully furnished, part furnished or unfurnished. Which of these is appropriate will depend on the type of property and local market conditions. We will be very pleased to give advice whether to furnish or not and to what level. As a minimum, we recommend you will need to provide decent quality carpets / floor coverings, curtains, light fittings and a cooker. Remember that there will be wear and tear on the property and any items provided. If letting furnished, you'll find a list of recommended items further on.
Personal items, Ornaments etc.Personal possessions, ornaments, pictures, books etc. should be removed from the premises especially those of real or sentimental value. Some items may be boxed, sealed and stored in the loft at the owner's risk. All cupboards and shelf space should be left clear for tenant's own use.
GardensGardens should be left neat, tidy and rubbish free, with the lawns cut. Tenants are required to maintain the gardens to a reasonable standard, providing they are left the necessary tools. However few tenants are experienced gardeners, and if you value your garden or if it is particularly large, you may wish us to arrange visits by our regular gardener.
CleaningAt the commencement of the tenancy the property must be in a thoroughly clean condition, and at the end of each tenancy it is the tenant’s responsibility to leave the property in a similar condition. Where they fail to do so, cleaning will be arranged at their expense.
Information for The Tenant/sIt is helpful if you leave information for the tenants, e.g. on operating the central heating and hot water systems, cooker and alarm system, and the day refuse is collected etc.
Keys You should provide one set of keys for each tenant. Where we will be managing the property we will arrange to have duplicates cut as required.
MortgageIf your property is mortgaged, you should obtain your mortgagee's written consent to the letting. They may require additional clauses in the tenancy agreement of which you must inform us.
LeaseholdsIf you are a leaseholder, you should check the terms of your lease, and obtain any necessary written consent before letting.
InsuranceYou should ensure that you are suitably covered for letting under both your buildings and contents insurance. Failure to inform your insurers may invalidate your policies. We can advise on Landlords Legal Protection, Rent Guarantee Cover and Landlords Buildings/Contents Insurance if required.
Bills and Regular OutgoingsWe recommend that you arrange for regular outgoings e.g. service charges, maintenance contracts etc, to be paid by standing order or direct debit. However where we are managing the property, by prior written agreement we may make payments of certain bills on your behalf, providing such bills are received in your name at our office, and that sufficient funds are held to your credit
Council Tax and Utility AccountsWe will arrange for the transfer of Council Tax and Utility accounts to the tenants. Meter readings will be taken, allowing your closing gas and electricity accounts to be drawn up. All these matters we will handle for you, however British Telecom will require instructions directly from both the landlord and the tenant.
Income TaxWhen resident in the UK, it is entirely the Landlords responsibility to inform Inland Revenue of rental income received, and to pay any tax due. Where the Landlord is resident outside the UK during a tenancy, under the rules effective from 6th April 1996, unless an exemption certificate is held, we as Landlords Agent's are obliged to retain and forward to the Inland Revenue an amount equal to the basic rate of income tax from rental received, less certain expenses. An application form for exemption from such deductions is available from our office; any further information may be obtained from Inland Revenue.
The InventoryA professional third party inventory can be provided at an additional cost.
It is most important that an inventory of contents and schedule of condition be prepared. In order to avoid misunderstanding or dispute at the end of a tenancy. Without such safeguards, it will be impossible for the Landlord to prove any loss, damage, or significant deterioration of the property or contents.
(PLEASE NOTE THAT AN INVENTORY IS NOT PROVIDED BY ANNE JAMES LETTINGS AND MANAGEMENT)
If the landlord wishes to provide their own inventory this can be arranged and a copy provided for the tenant on check in. (Please note a administration charge will apply for printing & supplying to tenants)
What Is an Assured Short hold Tenancy?Most tenancies will automatically be Assured Short hold Tenancies (ASTs), providing the rent is under £25,000 a year and the property is let to private individuals. Tenancies are usually granted for an initial fixed term of either 6 to 12 months. When the fixed term has expired the landlord is able to regain possession of the property providing he gives two months written notice to the tenant. In addition, if the tenant owes at least 2 months or 8 weeks rent on the property he / she (the Landlord) can apply through the court to seek a possession order.
Health And Safety and Other Legal RequirementsThe following requirements are the responsibility of the owner (Landlord). Where you have signed Full Management Agency Agreement, they are also our responsibility. Therefore when we are managing we will need to ensure compliance.
Energy Performance CertificateAs from the 1st October 2008 all rental properties will need a EPC at the start of a new tenancy. The survey normally takes less than an hour and focuses on, insulation, heating system, hot water system, fixed lighting, windows and fuels. We are able to arrange this on your behalf at a cost of £75 including VAT.
- Annual safety check - Under the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 all gas appliances and flues in rental accommodation must be checked for safety within 12 months of being installed, and thereafter at least every 12 months by a competent engineer (e.g. a gas safe registered gas installer).
- Maintenance - There is a duty to ensure that all gas appliances, flues and associated pipe work are maintained in a safe condition at all times.
- Records - Full records must be kept for least 2 years of the inspections of each appliance and flue, of any defects found and of any remedial action taken.
- Copies to tenants - A copy of the safety certificate issued by the engineer must be given to each new tenant before their tenancy commences, or to each existing tenant within 28 days of the check being carried out. Carbon Monoxide detectors can also be tested on your behalf by the gas engineer.
ElectricalThere are several regulations relating to electrical installations, equipment and appliance safety, and these affect Landlords and their Agent's in that they are "supplying in the course of business". They include the Electrical Equipment (safety) Regulations 1994, the Plugs and Sockets Regulations 1994, the 2005 Building Regulations - Part P and British Standard BS1363 relating to plugs and sockets.
Although with tenanted property there is currently no legal requirement for an electrical safety certificate (except in the case of all HMOs ) it is now widely accepted in the letting industry that the only safe way to ensure safety, and to avoid the risk of being accused of neglecting your "duty of care" or even of manslaughter is to arrange such an inspection and certificate.
FireThe Furniture and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations 1998 (amended 1989 & 1993) provide that specified items supplied in the course of letting property must meet minimum fire resistance standards. The regulations apply to all upholstered furniture, beds, headboards and mattresses, sofa-beds, futons and other convertibles, nursery furniture, garden furniture suitable for use in a dwelling, scatter cushions, pillows and non-original covers for furniture. They do not apply to antique furniture or furniture made before 1950, bedcovers including duvets, loose covers for mattresses, pillowcases, curtains, carpets or sleeping bags. Items which comply will have a suitable permanent label attached. Non-compliant items must be removed before the tenancy commences.
Smoke AlarmsAll properties built since June 1992 must have been fitted with mains powered smoke detectors alarms from new.
It is expected that as from October 2015 Parliament will pass new regulations making it compulsory for all Private rented properties to be fitted with smoke alarms on every floor.