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Keeping your rental accommodation up to basic standards Wed, 02 Jul 2014 15:09

Some landlords sell their buy to let house to a home cash buyer like Dream House Buyer because they just don't have the time and money to keep it in basic tenantable condition. Those minimum requirements include keeping the property wind and watertight and ensuring the good repair and working order of everything from basins, sinks, toilets and baths to the home's water heating and space heating installations.


You also have a general responsibility to ensure the good repair and working order of water and gas pipes, electrical wiring and the property's structure and interior, including drains and exterior pipes. Before even advertising the property to tenants, you are strongly advised to hire a qualified surveyor to undertake a full inspection of the house and produce a report on its overall condition. This helps to ensure that every part of the house is in a reasonable state of repair and good working order.


Wherever possible, no more than 24 hours should pass without the carrying out of emergency repairs to leaking roofs, burst water pipes, malfunctioning electrical installations, failed central heating or hot water boilers. You should give your tenants an emergency contact number that they can use to report any necessary repairs, and they should also be advised how to turn off water and gas and electric services, including where meters and stop cocks are positioned.


If you do not comply with your repair obligations as a landlord, the local district council may issue various enforcement notices, and also has repair enforcement powers. Not only should the rental property be free from any progressive structural movement likely to lead to any major part of the building failing or collapsing, but it should also be substantially free from rising and penetrative dampness. You should also ensure the efficiency and safe design of the property's heating system, and attention will need to be paid to lighting and ventilation, too.


Before deciding to sell your buy to let house, check its fitness against the statutory fitness standard, as amended by the Housing (NI) Order 1992. Requirements of the standard include that the property is structurally stable, free from serious disrepair and free from dampness prejudicial to any of the occupants' health. A home's failure to meet any of the complete list of criteria shall lead it to be deemed unfit for occupation, although this may make it eligible for a grant to remedy the situation.


Should you be unable to carry out the changes necessary, there is always the option to sell your buy to let house to Dream House Buyer. 

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