Landlords: How many of these crucial laws do you know?
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A lot of landlords are low on knowledge when it comes to lettings-focused legislation and need to pull their socks up, according to one national estate agency.
Allison Thompson, managing director at property specialist Leaders, has issued a reminder to landlords that they need to remain up to date with the laws, or place themselves at risk of prosecution.
She said: “It’s a real challenge for landlords to keep up with constantly changing legislation, but failure to do so can result in landlords facing fines, restrictions and even prison terms, so acknowledging, understanding and acting on regulations should be a priority.”
These are the some key pieces of legislation that many landlords are not fully aware of, according to Allison:
- A landlord or their letting agent must make sure a prospective tenant has the right to rent in the UK, or risk a fine of as much as £3,000 or up to five years in prison
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- Rental properties must usually achieve at least an ‘E’ rating in their Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) by April 2018
- The annual gas safety check needs to be up to date
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- Landlords are legally obliged to install and maintain a smoke alarm on each storey of their let property, while any room containing a solid fuel burning appliance must contain a carbon monoxide alarm
- At least 24-hours notice must be given before entering a tenanted property, unless it’s an emergency
- Landlords must deal with maintenance or repair requests from tenants in a prescribed way - or face being unable to regain possession of their property.
Allison adds: “It is clear there is plenty for landlords to stay on top of when it comes to legislation, so it is perhaps no surprise that so many are unaware of all their responsibilities.
“However, the penalties for not operating in accordance with the law are serious, so gaining a thorough understanding and staying compliant is a must for everybody letting a property.”