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Buy to let red tape

Beset by a range of potentially, disastrous tax changes (primarily the withdrawal of finance charges as an allowable deduction – reduced instead to a basic rate tax credit), landlords of buy-to let residential accommodation also have to contend with a growing list of red-tape. We have listed below a number of compliance issues that are backed by legislation. Failure to comply with these can lead to penalties. Obligations include:
Building and landlord insurance
Gas Safety Certificates
Energy Performance Certificates
Electrical Installation Reports and Certificates
Smoke detectors on each floor
Carbon monoxide detectors if required
Copies of tenants references
Tenants agreement to receive communications by email
Proof that tenant has right to rent in the UK (copy passport for example)
Household inventory
Register your property business with HMRC
Tenants contact details
Protect deposit within 30 days of receipt
You are required to respond to written complaints within 14 days of receipt, in writing
Inform tenants prior to a property inspection
Provide tenant with:
How to Rent – the checklist for renting in England
Guarantors Agreement – if required
Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement
Information regarding Deposit Protection Scheme
Serve the correct form of notice to end tenancy
Tenant should sign a list of deductions made from rent deposits
Return whole or balance of deposit at end of tenancy

This list is by no means complete. Landlords that use the services of letting agents will no doubt have these points covered as part of their contract with the agent.