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Letting process

A step-by-step guide to letting your London property
Selling or Letting? Request a valuation
Made in Chelsea, in 1856 With over 160 years’ experience matching people and property throughout London, we’re not only one of London’s longest established agents, but also one of the most prevalent.
The best in the business Underpinned by a culture built on energy, agility, professionalism and knowledge, our local teams live and breathe our values. That means we go to great lengths to get the best results for our clients.
Local know-how, better results Our clients benefit from better results because we intimately understand - and are proud to be a part of - the communities in which we operate.

As most of us are well aware, investing our money in property is rendered one of the most sensible decisions to make financially. Whether you are buying a property to let out, or are simply moving house but are deciding to keep and rent out your old house, there is a process to follow, which can sometimes have hiccups along the way. Follow our guide to an easy letting process.

Consider your options

Before you even start to look for a property, have a think about the mortgage you will need to take out. Will you need a Buy-to-Let mortgage or will you need to change your existing mortgage to a Let-to-Buy?

Buy-to-let mortgage

This kind of mortgage will apply to lenders who are purchasing a property to let out as a rental and not as their main place of residence. Buy-to-let mortgages are typically more expensive than a residential mortgage unless you are a cash buyer in which case you will not need a mortgage. Deposit requirements are usually a lot higher than the preferred 10% on residential mortgages and interest rates can rise.

Read more on buying to let

Let-to-buy mortgage

If you are buying a second home and plan to keep your old place of residence to use as a rental, mortgage providers will often require your existing mortgage to be changed to a Let-to-Buy. If you are still within a fixed term when you purchase a second property, then a ‘consent-to-lease’ or ‘consent-to-let’ is known as a special condition of which your new mortgage offer must include before completion.

Watch out for extra stamp duty charges. As of 1st April 2016, there is now a 3% surcharge on each stamp duty threshold band for those buying a second home as a main residence or a buy-to-let. Use an online stamp duty calculator to find out how much extra you will need.

Valuing the property and finding tenants

You’ve purchased the property, you’ve spruced it up and now you’re ready to find out the rental value. This requires a visit from one of our expert estate agents who will give you a rough estimation based on the area and the property itself. You will also get the chance to discuss whether the house will be furnished/unfurnished and how we will market the property to attract the right tenants for you. Marketing the property relies on what is available in the area such as local schools, bus/tram/train routes, shops, restaurants etc.

Once you are happy with the valuation, you will want to find the right tenants who will look after the property and pay their rent on time. It isn’t always wise to draw up a rental agreement with family or friends as situations can arise which lead to relationships becoming awkward and uncomfortable.

Here at Marsh & Parsons, we pride ourselves on making sure our strict vetting policy ensures the right tenants for you. The vetting process includes financial and reference checks and once we are happy with the information we have obtained, the tenancy agreement is written up for both the landlord and tenant to sign.

Book a property valuation today

Moving day

Once a suitable tenant has been chosen, your letting agent will write up a tenancy agreement including all the rules and regulations both the occupants and the landlord must abide by. This will include information about the fixtures and fittings, the length of tenancy, deposit details and details about your required length of notice.

It is generally recommended that tenants hand over a deposit that would equate to four weeks’ worth of rent. This should then be deposited into the government-run Deposit Protection Scheme, which protects both landlords and tenants if disagreements should arise when notice to leave the property has been given.

Property Management

As a landlord, you can choose whether or not to manage the property yourself, or hire an estate agent to do it for you. Managing a property can be hard work, especially when juggling your own property as well as a career and family life. The last thing you need when enjoying a relaxing holiday is a call from your tenant to say the house has flooded.

At Marsh & Parsons, we can effectively and reliably manage the property for you. Should your tenants have any queries or emergencies, we are their first port of call, leaving you to go about your daily business without any hassle. Speaking from experience, potential tenants are usually attracted to properties that are managed by an agent as opposed to directly by the landlord. The distance between a tenant and landlord is also an added bonus, as issues can be dealt with at a much quicker pace.  

Read more on our property management service

Coming to the end of the tenancy

Tenants are required to give notice before moving out, and this can vary from anything between 6 weeks and three months, although this should always be checked in the tenancy contract. As a landlord, you may wish to put the house up for rental while the previous tenants are still residing there, purely so your break from rental income is as short as possible. This way, future tenants can access the house for a viewing while your old tenants prepare to move out.

Before the occupants hand over the keys, a thorough inspection of the property should be performed by either the landlord or property manager. Any damage caused by the tenant can be claimed against their deposit, which is why it is so important to have this protected by the government scheme discussed above. This also protects your tenants, as any disagreement can be raised to dispute level and settled professionally.

If your tenant expresses they would like to simply renew their tenancy, this is usually straightforward and involves an increase/decrease in rent depending on the current market and also making sure both the landlord and tenant are still abiding by the original terms and conditions set out in the tenancy agreement.

If you would like to discuss letting out a property or would simply like some advice, do not hesitate to contact our office to speak to a dedicated member of the team.

Lettings Renewals & Extensions Service includes:

  • Reassessment of current rent amounts in accordance with prevailing market conditions
  • Negotiation of renewal including the addition of new terms where necessary
  • Comprehensive renewal administration including issuing a memorandum of renewal and arranging signature by both parties
  • Continuation of rent collection and arrears management
  • Continuation of deposit holding service

Why let with us?

  • Unbeatable local know-how
  • Award-winning customer service
  • The best possible price, in the shortest time
  • Exposure to 1,000s of high-calibre and corporate tenants
  • Viewings and appointments that fit around your schedule
  • Totally switched on marketing and a brand Londoners love

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Marsh & Parsons is registered in England (Company No. 05377981) Registered office address: 80 Hammersmith Road, London, W14 8UD (VAT No. GB 842 7959 83) | Copyright © Marsh & Parsons 2018