Minimum EPC ratings could return
David Cox, Rightmove’s General Council has stated this week that EPC requirements in the PRS are likely to return in some form or other in the future and warns that landlords should not take their finger off the pulse in getting their properties more energy efficient. He says
It’s likely that EPC requirements in some form will re-appear in the near future, so landlords with lower EPC rated homes should still keep this in mind and consider the improvements they might make. However with the deadline scrapped and all the attention on the Renters’ Reform Bill, it may be that while focusing on the changes the Bill brings in, considerations about green improvements take a back seat for some landlords.
In a Rightmove survey only a quarter of landlords have said that they plan to make energy efficient changes to properties rated below a ‘C’ compared to over a third last year. Furthermore 21% of those landlords with a property under ‘C’ plan to sell them compared to 33% in April last year.
David Cox also called more clarity so that landlords and letting agents can plan for the future and agents can provide the right guidance.
Regular property inspections now more critical than ever
A survey by Direct Line has identified that 83% of landlords have had breeches in their tenancies by their tenants and they are now urging landlords to carry out more frequent inspections to avoid any potential issues that could arise.
The survey says that the biggest breech is down to cleanliness and maintenance, where 36% of landlords have had to deal with these breeches. Many tenants do not report any repairs to their landlords. 29% of landlords have experienced this. Therefore regular inspections are now a becoming more of necessity.
Direct Line landlord product manager, Sarah Casey says
Property inspections shouldn’t feel intrusive for tenants and are all about building good relationships and keeping an eye out for any emerging issues.
Early intervention can often stop these from developing into a bigger problem that requires landlords to take further action.
Only 55% of landlords carry out regular inspections every six months and only 21% carry out one once a year. A shocking 10% of landlords only visit their properties at the beginning and end of a tenancy. Which one are you?
Note that if you find doing property inspections challenging, the Landlord Law Property Inspection Kit can help.
Wales introduces mandatory Short Lets registration scheme
Anyone in Wales renting out ‘visitor accommodation’, including Airbnbs, short lets, b&b’s and holidays lets must now register with a new mandatory scheme in order to demonstrate ‘compliance with safety and quality’.
The first phase will be a statutory registration scheme which will provide a register for visitor accommodation to include details on who, where and how they are operating in this accommodation sector. Once established, it will require compliance with safety requirements and, at a later stage, quality standards.
Deputy Minister for arts, sports and Tourism, Dawn Bowden says
The visitor economy is changing rapidly, and while the growth of online booking platforms has brought many benefits, there are concerns around compliance with existing requirements and the impact of short-term lets on housing stock and our communities.
This has been welcomed by the Short Term Accommodation Association, who hope that the government will have a clear picture of how big the hospitality sector in each area is and how big a contribution to the economy each type of provider is making.
No enforcement in PRS for mould and damp
We heard this week that the social housing sector will be forced to investigate damp and mould issues within 14 days and act on repairs on a further 7 days and all emergency repairs are to be dealt with within 24 hours, the government this week has stated that it will not be putting these deadlines onto private landlords.
Housing Minister Baroness Scott of ByBrook said
Almost half of private rental landlords own a single property and the vast majority own fewer than five so, unlike social housing landlords, very few will have in-house or contracted repair and maintenance teams, which makes it more difficult.
She added, therefore, that proportionate timescales need to be taken into account and that the safety and decency of private rented homes will be addressed through the Renters Reform Bill, which will give councils enforcement powers.
MAYOR: ‘Day’s of bad landlords being untouchable coming to end’
Renters face higher rents and fewer choices in 2024, Rightmove warns
Social housing estate of 29 homes to be guilt in Stoke Ferry
Section 21: Rental sector supplier hits back at Citizens Advice claims
Newsround will be back next week.
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