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A-Z of Lettings

Letting or renting a property can feel daunting without also being confused by some of the words and terms that you will come across. Below we have put together an A-Z of jargon regarding the letting of property in the UK to help you on your way!
A is for Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement 
Is the most common form of tenancy agreement -it entitles the landlord to a possession order immediately after the initial agreed period, which is usually for six months. The landlord is therefore able to evict the tenant after the initial fixed term without a legal reason.
For our managed properties, we review the rental amount annually. We discuss any suggested increase with our Landlords and if an increase is desired, we notify the Tenants two months before the anniversary.
B is for Buy to let 
We can help find you the best Buy to Let investment properties to obtain the best yield. We can then assist with finding you excellent tenants and manage your tenancy for you if you wish, so that you can feel safe in the knowledge that your investment is being very well taken care of.
C is for Cleaning  
We encourage Landlords to instruct contract cleaning of their rental property when the property is first let. This way, the inventory will note that the property has been professionally cleaned by the Landlord at the start of the tenancy. In turn, at the end of the tenancy, the Tenant must have the property contract cleaned to the same standard as when they moved in.
D is for Dogs 
We love dogs at Robert Leech, but we do understand that not all rental properties are suitable for pets and we always respect our Landlord’s wishes in this regard. However, should a Landlord decide to permit a dog (or cat) at their property, we can take a higher dilapidations deposit and have special pet clauses in the tenancy agreement, requiring that all carpets are professionally cleaned and flea treated at the end of the tenancy, at the Tenant’s cost.
E is for Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) 
An EPC measures the energy efficiency of a property using a scale of A-G. It is a legal requirement and the Landlord’s responsibility to have a valid EPC for their property when it is marketed, and for rental purposes a property must have an EPC rating of E or above.  An EPC lasts for ten years. We can organise for an EPC to be carried out for you if you would like us to.
F is for Furnished
In recent years, we have noticed a huge decline in the number of Tenants looking for furnished properties and we therefore advise our Landlords to let their properties unfurnished. It is usual however, to provide a fridge/freezer, washing machine, oven and hob. A dishwasher will give your property the edge over those without and we recommend that Landlords provide curtains or blinds so that Tenants have no need to drill holes into walls.
G is for Gas Safety Inspections
It is a legal requirement that a Gas Safety Inspection is carried out by a Gas Safe Engineer annually. We are happy to recommend an engineer who we have worked with for many years. For Landlords who use our fully managed service. We organise this annually on their behalf so they don’t have to give this important inspection a second thought.
H is for History
At Robert Leech we understand the importance of knowing our Landlords, Tenants and Properties – this makes sorting out any issues fast and based on knowledge and understanding.
I is for Inventory
An inventory is a document which describes the condition and contents of a property. At the start of a new tenancy the independent inventory clerk walks the new tenants through the property to ensure that they agree with the content of the inventory. This is called the ‘check in’ and at the end of the tenancy a ‘check out’ takes place. The clerk notes any differences between the two and this document is used to fairly deduct any charges, if required, from the Tenants deposit.
J is for Julie Sullivan
Julie has worked in the Lettings Industry for over 30 years and has been with Robert Leech as a Lettings Manager since 2010. Julie is always happy to advise on suitable properties and their likely rental income before a prospective purchaser makes a financial commitment.
K is for Katy Paine
In 2012 Katy joined the Lettings and Property Management Department at Robert Leech where she will be found registering applicants, dealing with a variety of rental enquiries, booking in viewings, preparing new tenancies and dealing with the property management of our managed properties.
L is for Landlords
We pride ourselves on our service and have Landlords that have been with us for over 25 years.
M is for Maintenance
We have an excellent network of maintenance contractors from gas engineers to decorators, with whom we have forged strong business relationships over many years, based on experience and trustworthiness. This is not to be taken lightly and we are very proud of our contractor relationships. We look after them and they in turn look after us and our landlords. We try to use local independent contractors wherever possible and we do not make any profit on their work.
N is for Negotiation
We are well skilled to negotiate to achieve the best financial return for our Landlords.
O is for Obstacles
Julie and her team are deft in problem solving and making sure there is an amicable resolution.
P is for portfolio
If you wish to grow your property portfolio you’ve come to the right agent. Our sales team will be more than happy to help with your search.
Q is for Qualifying Applicants
We think it’s vital to match the right applicants to the right properties and landlords, so we ask extensive questions to applicants at the first point of contact to make sure that they could be right for the property.
R is for Recommendations
It isn’t always easy choosing an agent to look after your property and we are very proud that the largest proportion of our instructions are by recommendation. Our Lettings team have worked hard to forge strong working relationships with Landlords, Tenants and Contractors. If you wish to see testimonials please ask one of our team or look at robertleech.com.
S is for Sally Ewbank
Sally is solely responsible for every aspect of the Reigate portfolio including property management and is enjoying being able to tailor the lettings service to landlords requirements. She has over 10 years experience in estate agency, with the last 7 years spent specialising in lettings in Reigate. Sally has lived in Reigate for 20 years and loves the town and is knowledgeable about what it has to offer.
T is for Tenant Deposit Scheme
For fully managed and rent collection services we transfer all tenant’s deposits into the custodial scheme known as the DPS (Deposit Protection Service). Tenants can feel safe in the knowledge that their money is being held in one of the three government approved schemes. If necessary, but rare in our experience, they can utilise the free arbitration service of the DPS should there be any dispute over deductions from their deposit at the end of their tenancy, following the receipt of the check out report provided by the Inventory Clerk. Let only landlords are at liberty to join this scheme if they wish or they can opt for the TDS or My Deposits. We will be happy to give advice in this regard if required.
U is for unfurnished
The majority of our applicants are seeking unfurnished properties, a benefit for landlords as you will not be responsible for purchasing or replacing furniture prior to or during the tenancy.
V is for Void Period
A void period is when your property is unoccupied and therefore there is no rental income. Something to be avoided and buying the right property in the best location will minimise this happening, as will an accurate rental asking price.
W is for Wear & Tear
The law defines fair wear and tear as “reasonable use of the premises by the tenant and the ordinary operation of natural forces.” This refers to the twin forces of time and normal daily habits. Walking across a carpet from door to dining table, for example, will exert a wearing effect during the length of a year which is perfectly natural.
X is for eXtraordinary
We believe that we go the eXtra mile for our clients and that we offer an eXtraordinary service.
Y is for You
Your experience of Robert Leech. We are a family run, local, independent estate agents  for whom recommendations are crucial. Therefore your experience is of paramount importance to us.
Z is for Zebras
Zebras are usually not allowed in rental properties!

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