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Wednesday 19th June 2013

Latest Comments

Total Number of Property118 Comments: 6

Brian Godfrey

9:15 AM, 23rd August 2013, About 8 years ago

Refusal of consent to let by mortgage lender

Reply to the comment left by "Gavin Morris" at "23/08/2013 - 06:27":

HI Gavin. Generally, yes, consent to let tends to have a limited time-frame. In addition, your lender might put you on a higher interest rate to reflect the perceived increase in risk.

Consent to let might be a better option for individuals who know they're only relocating temporarily and/or who don't have a lot of equity in their property for a buy to let remortgage. If you think you're going to be away for a long time, refinancing might be the better option.

You can find out more about the 'let to buy' process here: What, exactly, is let to buy?... Read More

Brian Godfrey

9:29 AM, 23rd July 2013, About 9 years ago

Refusal of consent to let by mortgage lender

Sadly, lenders are no longer quite as helpful as they once were with regards to permission or consent to let. The upshot of this is that you now have less to lose from their refusal. If consent is granted you'll often pay a loaded rate, a heavy fee and probably face a lengthy interview and annual reviews. Also, what if you find you have to stay away for longer than anticipated?

If you do find you have to switch to a buy to let mortgage, because you want to return to your house as a main residence in the near future, the sale of the mortgage will be regulated. Also, remember to make your tenant aware of your desire to return. Not only is this good manners, this also means that if you get a problem tenant who doesn't want to move on, you can cite ground 1 in a Section 8 eviction notice (that you intend to return to the property to live in it), which is a mandatory ground, and if you can prove it the courts should automatically rule in your favour.

As Mark said, you can challenge the decision, but this does take time. Also, I don't think it's quite so unusual in recent years for lenders to deny permission to let. The reason for this is the now black-and-white distinction between regulated residential sales and unregulated BTL or commercial sales - regulators such as the FCA want there to be as little crossover between the two as possible.... Read More

Brian Godfrey

11:28 AM, 28th June 2013, About 9 years ago

Landlord's right to visit his property with or without notice

Good afternoon Mike

Section 11 Subsection 6 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985 has this to say on the matter:

"In a lease in which the lessor’s repairing covenant is implied there is also implied a covenant by the lessee that the lessor, or any person authorised by him in writing, may at reasonable times of the day and on giving 24 hours’ notice in writing to the occupier, enter the premises comprised in the lease for the purpose of viewing their condition and state of repair."

However, because of the tenant's right to quiet occupation, your tenant is entitled to refuse you entry and if you gain access without permission, you may be guilty of harassment (the exception being access to communal areas in an HMO let on an individual room basis). As Chris said, the tenant will be in violation of their tenancy agreement if they repeatedly refuse access without good cause. It's a bit of a legal tennis match, which we recently published a blog about.

With regards to your questions:

1. The notice should be written, at least 24 hours in advance, and it’s advisable to deliver it by recorded post. You should retain a copy of the letter and proof of posting for your own records.

2. Each individual time you gain entry, be it for repairs or an inspection, you need to give 24 hours' notice. The exception to this rule is if there is an emergency, such as a flood or fire, in which case you can enter at will.

3. A phone call alone isn't sufficient, though it is always worth substantiating the written notice with a quick phone call, email or text exchange to make sure the tenant is fully aware of, and happy with, your visit.

4. I'm afraid that you have to give 24 hours' notice irrespective of arrears or any other contractual breaches of which the tenant might be guilty. This includes extreme arrears cases, such as those of several months.

I hope this helps.
Warm regards... Read More

Brian Godfrey

17:24 PM, 19th June 2013, About 9 years ago

Landlord power can and will get Deposit Protection rules clarified

"In my opinion it needs to be confirmed that once a deposit is protected, either in a custodial or by an insured scheme, than it remains protected until such time as it is unprotected."

My agreement could not be more absolute, Mark. The issue for the landlord in question - Superstrike Ltd, the claimant in the county court case which sparked all of this panic - was that they had *not* protected the deposit initially as it was taken prior to 6 April 2007, when deposit protection regulation was introduced. The section 21 was considered to be invalid as the statutory periodic tenancy upon which it was issued began *after* this date.

Further to your suggestion, I would deem it necessary to consider the *conditions* under which a deposit was taken as on-going, or at least give landlords time now to protect deposits taken under similar circumstances. The problem is that many did not think an SP tenancy counted as renewal, and so many landlords could still be vulnerable to legal action even if your suggestion was followed.

Another option, one I would favour, would be to clarify specifically that SP tenancies are, in fact, continuations or FT tenancies for the purposes of guarantors, deposits etc, until such a time as either party terminates the agreement.... Read More

Brian Godfrey

9:46 AM, 30th May 2013, About 9 years ago

Question re tenants running a business from a rented home

Good morning Rex

Will your tenant be delivering stock to, or storing it on, your property? It sounds like it.

Generally (as far as I am aware) if the above is true, if a workforce is regularly coming and going, and/or if machinery is being operated, it counts as a home business.

This isn't illegal, but it might be against the terms of your BTL mortgage or landlord insurance policy. You can find more information on the subject here:

What do I do if my tenant has set up a business in my property?

Warm regards... Read More