Sell the property.
You could sell your property on the open market – employ an estate agent or advertise it yourself locally or on the Internet.
- You will find listings of estate agents in the Sefton Council area on the Internet or in the Yellow Pages.
- Make sure you choose the most suitable agent for your needs. Check that the agent sells houses in the relevant area and that they sell other similar properties to yours -some estate agents may specialise in selling empty and run down properties.
- Run down and empty premises can take longer to sell and are often more difficult to sell to a general buyer. Please be aware that you may have to drop the price or do some renovations / improvements to the property to make it more attractive.
Sell at a property auction. These are a quick, decisive way of selling and they can be much quicker than selling on the open market. They are aimed at a targeted audience – developers, cash buyers, investors and portfolio landlords, and the very issues that might make empty properties unattractive to home owners may make them attractive to these buyers.
- Contact the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), Customer Services Department, 12 Great George Street, Parliament Square, London, SW1P 3AD (Tel. 020 7222 7000) for details of estate agents running auctions in your area.
Let / Rent the property out become the landlord. You do need to understand that becoming a landlord is a business opportunity and must be considered in this context. If you have no business experience and limited time, you should seriously consider whether becoming a landlord is a suitable option. Should you wish to let the property yourself there are various factors that need to be considered:
- Finding a tenant – always be cautious when finding a tenant. It is always advisable to interview prospective tenants yourself and get references. You also need to ensure that you do not discriminate in any way yourself – based on race, religion, sex, age or disability, when choosing a tenant.
- Get a good contract, which will be the Tenancy Agreement. Think about any restrictions you wish to place on the tenant and the use of your property.
- Ask for a rent that is realistic and affordable for your potential tenants. Housing Benefit – if your prospective tenant intends to claim housing benefit then please contact us and complete the online form, see Do it online, Council Tax Landlord Tenancy change.
- Complete the Council Tax Landlord Tenancy change form to keep us updated with changes in your coulcil tax.
- If you have a loan or a mortgage that is secured against your property you must obtain consent from the lender that you can let the property out. Without this consent the tenancy may be deemed unlawful and the lender than has the right to take possession of the property.
- You should confirm that your buildings insurance will be maintained if the property is let. You should consider the public liability element of your insurance and check that this will cover any loss or injury occurring at the property which might be sustained by the tenant or visitors during the tenancy – for which you, the landlord, could be liable.
HMO (Houses of Multiple Occupation) licensing. If your property is three or more stories high and has five or more occupants who share amenities such as bathrooms, toilets and cooking facilities it now has to be licensed under the compulsory licensing scheme introduced under the Housing Act 2004. Operating an unlicensed HMO is a criminal offence that carries a fine of up to £20,000. See further information.
Useful websites and contacts
www.residentiallandlord.co.uk or call 0870 765 2005
www.direct.gov.uk - Go to the home and community section, then the private renting and letting section.
Use a Private Rental / Management / Letting Agency. You may wish to engage the services of a professional agent to manage the tenancy. A letting agent will act on your behalf for a fee. Letting agencies can: find a
tenant for a property, collect rent, manage the property, arrange repairs and provide tenancy agreements and inventories.
- The Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA) Tel: 0845 345 5752, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- The National Approved Letting Scheme (NALS) Tel: 01242 581712, Email: email@example.com
- The National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA) Tel: 01926 496 800, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) Tel: 0870 333 1600, Email: email@example.com
If the agency you are using is a member of one of the above you may be able to complain if it does not keep to a certain standard of good practice.