If you wish to let a property you own to a tenant Morison and Smith Solicitors can ensure a Provate Residential Tenacy Agreement is put in place to protect your interest. The Private Housing (Tenancies) (Scotland) Act 2016 came into force on 1st December 2017 and brought with it the new Private Residential Tenancy. We are able to provide information on landlord registration. It is an offence for a person to let out a house subject to a lease agreement whilst unregistered with the relevant local authority.
As a potential landlord, there are a number of significate changes of which you should be aware (please note, this list is not exhaustive):
There are no more pre-tenancy notices, such as the AT5;
- The Scottish Government has provided a ‘model private residential tenancy agreement’, which includes a number of mandatory and discretionary tenancy terms, please see the accompanying notes for a further explanation;
- The process and ground for regaining possession of the property have changed;
- A landlord must provide the tenant with written tenancy terms and one of the Government-produced notes to accompany the agreement, although these may be in the form of electronic documents;
- If you do not provide a written copy of the terms of the tenancy, a correct set of notes to accompany the terms, and a written explanation of any updated terms within 28 days of any change, the tenant may make an application to the First-tier tribunal for Scotland;
- Any change in rent should be given at least one month’s notice, the legislation makes provision for how rent should be changed;
- The deposit can be no more than two months’ rent;
- A landlord cannot ask the tenant to pay other administration fees, premiums, further deposits or additional charges; and,
- You can agree with your tenant to conduct all communications by email of you both prefer.
In addition there are a number of additional obligations placed on the tenant (again, this list is not exhaustive):
- The tenant must give access for repairs, with 48 hours’ notice, unless in an emergency;
- The tenant must give reasonable access for repairs, inspection, or valuation of the property; and
- Without your prior consent, the tenant cannot sublet, take in a lodger of give their tenancy to someone else, and you must be informed is anyone else living with them.
It should be noted, the above only applies to new tenancies. Previous tenancies such as the Short-Assured Tenancies will continue, under the same rules, if created before 1st December 2017, but any new agreements will be covered by the new legislation.
Finally, the Scottish Government has provided a detailed guide of all the implications for a landlords, including their rights and responsibilities, a copy of same is enclosed for reference.
We can advise you fully on any concerns you have.