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February 27, 2019

Landlords In Ashford – Set For 2019 Regulatory Changes?

If you thought that the toughest thing about being a landlord was managing the needs of your tenant, it is likely that you aren’t a landlord. From the importance of finding the right tenant to dealing with the vast number of regulations that landlords and rental property must comply with, being a landlord is a difficult role.

Even though there is a prominent level of demand for rental property, being a landlord is time-consuming and often draining. The number of regulations and rules that landlords must follow is one thing but the fact that many of these regulations change or are updated is another issue. There is also the fact that many regulations are added, giving landlords even more to consider when doing their job.

There were four new items for landlords to contend with in 2018 and 2019 is shaping up to be similar. In recent years, there have been changes to the way that mortgage interest can be treated as an allowable expense, and this year is no different. In 2019, the phase will enter its third year with landlords only being able to deduct 25% of their mortgage interest rate payment as and allowance, with the remaining 75% being levelled at the basic rate.

There is also a change coming in 2019 which means all letting agents are required to have Client Money Protection, or CMP. This move is set to offer protection for landlords and tenants in the event of the agent going bust. It is important that landlords who use a letting agent is aware of this change and they make sure that this cover applies to them.

However, for most landlords, it is the introduction of the tenant fees ban that will have the largest impact on their business. This is scheduled to come into effect from the 1st of June 2019 and this regulation will limit the ways that landlords can charge fees. A landlord will still be able to ask for the deposit and rent from a tenant, but landlords will no longer be able to charge fees for reference checks or inventory reviews.

These are important parts of letting property, so landlords will have to absorb these costs. It is still possible for landlords to charge fees for issues like a tenant losing their keys or making a late rental payment but generally, landlords will be severely restricted in what they can charge for.

Another issue that landlords should be aware of is the cap on deposits for rental property. There will be a five week cap when the annual rent of the property is less than £50,000 and a six week cap where the annual rent is higher than £50,000. This is likely to impact on the way that some landlords operate today or the priced they charge.

It is also important for landlords to be aware of the Homes (Fitness for Human Habitation) Act which comes into effect on the 20th of March 2019. This Act makes it possible for tenants to sue landlords if the standard of rental property is not of a satisfactory level. This means landlords will be under greater pressure to ensure they offer a high-standard of rental home.

While most landlords will not be affected by this, rogue landlords will be affected but it won’t hurt landlords to be aware of the risks involved in the market. Anyone who offers a dependable service should be fine, but there is no harm in ensuring high standards are set and maintained.

If you are a landlord in Ashford and you need assistance staying in touch with regulations, contact Stevens and Co. We are here to ensure you receive the best standard of support and guidance at all times, so please get in touch.

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