I bought a one bed flat in North London a few years ago to live in with my partner. Recently we purchased our first flat together and have moved into it. I was able to secure the new mortgage partly based on the projected income from the old property – I believe this is known as “Let to Buy” and is becoming quite commonplace.
To avoid becoming a dreaded “accidental landlord” I’ve done a fair bit of research in the run up to moving out to ensure I know what I’m doing.
However, I’m still concerned that I may have overlooked something.
- Could experienced readers just take a moment to check out my thoughts:
- I have obtained consent to let from mortgage lender (for £100 fee).
- We have cleaned the property and touched up paint etc. and it is ready to go.
- I’ve had the boiler inspected, serviced and gas safety certificate issued.
- I’ve spoken to the Inland revenue about tax implications (found out that the wear and tear allowance is only applicable to fully furnished properties as of April 2013).
- I’m pretty much set to choose a letting agents and begin.
My questions (sorry for the long run up):
- Picking a letting agent: The flat is in great condition and I have a homecare agreement with British Gas which covers the boiler, the central heating, the plumbing and the electrics. The flat was built 5 years ago and is in great condition. Should I bother paying a management fee?
- Should I bother with a traditional letting agent at all: online letting agents seem to be far more reasonably priced?
- What are reasonable charges for finding a tenant, referencing etc. as there seems to be a large variability?
- I have been advised to sell my property 3 years after moving out to avoid CGT, but from my understanding there is also relief equal to the lower of: The maximum amount of Letting Relief due is the lower of:
- £40,000 the amount of Private Residence Relief due the amount of gain you’ve made on the let part of the property
- What are people’s strategies for tax planning; is it worth hiring an accountant just for one property (rent likely to be around £15k/annum)?
Any advice regarding one or all of the above questions would be appreciated, as would any other additional advice for a first timer!