Your tenants are in, so give yourself a big pat on the back. Now you can sit back and do nothing for the next few months except watch the rent coming rolling in, can’t you?
Well no, not exactly. First of all there are a few loose ends to tie up and then, unless you’ve appointed someone to manage the property for you, you’ll need to keep an eye on things.
Don’t forget to make sure all the paperwork is in order. Have you protected the deposit and sent the tenant the Prescribed Information and received signed confirmation from them that they’ve received this? Has the tenant returned to you a signed copy of the check-in report to confirm everything is in order? Have you got a copy of the tenancy agreement, signed by all parties?
All of these need to be kept somewhere safe, just in case of any dispute or query in the future.
You’ll also need to inform all utility providers including gas and electricity companies and the water board details of the new tenancy, including the tenant’s name and the start date of the tenancy. You’ll need to give them the meter readings from the date the new tenant moved in. By doing this, you’re ensuring that you won’t be held responsible for any of the bills. If you're happy for your tenant to look at a different energy provider or tariff, make sure you tell them so they can save themselves some money.
If your tenant is paying by standing order (most do) then make a note to remind yourself to check that they make monthly payments on time. If the first payment doesn’t hit your account by the due date, don’t panic. Often there are hold-ups at the bank, sometimes the tenant has been so busy with the move that they’ve forgotten to fill out the forms and they just need a gentle, polite reminder from you that the rent must always be paid on time.
For landlords usingUPay On Success services, registering the deposit and setting up a standing order mandate will all be taken care of and we’ll also collect the first month’s rent for you. If you’re using our fully managed service, we’ll also inform the utility providers of the tenant’s details.
After three to six months, it’s a good idea to carry out a routine inspection of your property to make sure no maintenance issues have cropped up. You can’t always depend on tenants to let you know if something is wrong, many will ignore early signs of damp or leaks until they’re directly affected.
And yes, a routine inspection will give you a chance to spy on your tenants and make sure they’re taking good care of the place. Make sure you give them at least 24 hours’ notice of your visit and be flexible: if the date of your proposed visit isn’t convenient, suggest you go round at another time, but don’t let the tenant keep fobbing you off. You’re entitled to visit your property once in a while and if they seem reluctant to let you in, use this as a warning something might be wrong.