As a first time landlord, it can seem daunting keeping up with legislation and best practices. Brokers Direct has put together a handy landlord checklist for new landlords to follow.
- Register as a landlord. All private landlords in Scotland must register as a landlord, ensuring that they are ‘fit and able’ to be letting residential property.
- Inform mortgage lender. While it isn’t compulsory to have a buy to let mortgage, to avoid breaching your terms of loan the mortgage lender should be informed of your leasing of the property.
- Check tax implications. No matter how small your buy to let portfolio, treat it like a business and declare your income.
- Gas safety certificate. As a landlord, you are responsible for the safety of your tenants. It is recommended to keep a record of the safety check for 2 years, issuing a copy to each existing tenant within 28 days of the check being completed.
- Inventory checking. Minimise potential disputes between tenants and landlords with a listing of all the contents of a property and a record of their condition.
- Energy performance certificate. A legal obligation, all landlords must have an energy performance certificate and provide a copy of it to prospective tenants. Brokers Direct recommend Just EPC.
- Tenant referencing. Avoid unsuitable tenants with a tenant referencing service. Landlords Hub recently detailed what tenant referencing is.
- Inform council. It is likely your tenant will be responsible for paying Council Tax, but landlords will have to pass tenant and tenancy details onto the Council.
- Secure deposit. Deposits must be placed in a tenancy deposit protection (TDP) scheme within 30 days of receiving it.