Guide to letting
Heywoods finds vetted tenants quickly and manages your property with focus and professionalism.
Why choose Heywoods?
Heywoods is North Staffordshire’s premier lettings and property management agent. We offer a personalised solution to your lettings needs with all our services under one roof.
Our team of property management experts care about your property, tailoring their service to each landlord, being up-front about costs, communicating well and making letting simple and stress-free. Many of our landlords have been with us long term and enjoy great returns on their investments.
North Staffordshire’s letting market is a lively one, with large student and hospital staff populations as well as demand from the region’s numerous large businesses. Our carefully designed Homefinder service means we quickly match your property to the right tenant.
Heywoods’ lettings service
Our Property Management team is experienced and dedicated. They know the market well and are trained to deal with issues regarding the property as well as those regarding tenants. They have one simple aim: to ensure that you enjoy the benefits of owning and renting a property, with the minimum amount of stress. Unlike many other lettings agents, you will always have only one branch and team to deal with for any of your lettings and property management needs.
Property management services - what we offer
We want to understand your needs and expectations from the outset. Whatever your requirements, they are our top priority, so we tailor our services to you.
- Flexible, personalised and bespoke service to suit you and your circumstances.
- Free, no obligation rental valuation to advise you of a realistic potential income.
- Assessment of your legal responsibilities as a landlord, with practical help so that your property meets current safety standards.
- Screening of prospective tenants, including rigorous reference checks.
- Management of relevant documentation and procedures.
- Drawing up of an inventory to be agreed by all parties.
- Arranging independent registration of all deposits.
- Rent collection.
- Issue of monthly rental statements.
- Arrears management.
- Regular inspection reports to ensure your assets are being looked after.
- Arrangement of regular maintenance and ad-hoc repairs, in consultation with you, using our established network of approved local contractors.
- Full on-call service all day, every day.
- Termination of tenancies.
- Renewal of tenancies and negotiation of new contracts.
At the end of the tenancy we:
- arrange thorough check-out inspections against our inventory and report any damages or dilapidations
- oversee deposit return
- offer advice on any repairs or refurbishment required to ensure a quick and successful re-let.
Getting your property ready to market
A rental valuation with a member of our property management team will give you an accurate idea of how much you can charge to let your property. We consider current demand, the area, local schools, transport links and other amenities, the property’s size and condition and any stipulations you make.
Making your property attractive to tenants
We are happy to advise whether your property should be let furnished or unfurnished, and the implications of this. Make sure the property is well-maintained and your interiors are fresh and neutral – it’s a good idea to have your property professionally cleaned before you let it. This sets high standards from the start; we will then do everything we can to ensure these standards are maintained.
At Heywoods, we keep a careful eye on how tenants are searching for their next property. We embrace new technology to stay a step ahead of our competitors; we want your property to be found first and presented in its best light.
We prepare property and area details with professional colour photos that are sent to all suitable prospective tenants on our books as soon as they are available.
Your property online
We add your property to the Homefinder search tool here at heywoodsproperty.co.uk as well as Rightmove – the UK’s largest property portal, Zoopla and PrimeLocation, so that it can be found at any time of the day or night, from anywhere in the world.
We showcase most properties in the windows of our Newcastle-under-Lyme town centre offices. These are just off the A34 Blackfriars roundabout; we find there are plenty of passers-by who will spot a property and come in for a chat. The offices have plenty of parking spaces.
Our team of Home Moving Consultants have great local knowledge and can answer any questions from a prospective tenant. We show your property at its best and give you any feedback.
We offer viewings in the evenings and at weekends to ensure you don't miss out on a potential tenant and we will do our best to fit in with any current tenants to minimise disruption and ensure your property is empty for as little time as possible.
Keeping your investment safe
We want your tenants to be good tenants – paying rent on time and leaving your property in good condition. There are several ways we make sure you get the best tenant and look after your investment…
Our referencing procedure
For your peace of mind, we engage a specialist reference company to thoroughly check applicants’ credit history, current employment, accommodation status and right to rent in the UK.
It is a legal requirement that all damage deposits are secured by a deposit scheme. This protects both you and your tenant. If you choose Heywoods to manage your property, we can deal with this for you as well as any disputes that may arise at the end of a tenancy.
By law, tenants’ deposits must be registered with a government-approved Deposit Protection Service that:
- gives an independent resolution to any dispute arising between tenant and landlord
- ensures that tenants’ deposits are not unfairly kept by landlords
- safeguards all deposits from rogue tenants, landlords and agents
- gives all parties confidence that their deposits are protected by a licensed organisation.
If you choose to register the deposit yourself, you must give us proof that this has been done.
We look after our tenants
We know that happy tenants make good tenants who tend to stay put. Throughout a tenancy, our property management team makes sure any queries are answered and repairs are seen to with minimum fuss; our mobile app allows tenants to report repairs wherever they are and our 24-hour on-call service means that your tenants can get problems dealt with whenever they arise.
There are several legal requirements made on landlords and Heywoods keeps pace with any changes so that you don’t have to. Below is a brief outline of your responsibilities as a landlord. Our dedicated property management team can offer advice on any issue and we can recommend tradesmen for any job, big or small.
The structure and exterior of the property must be kept in good repair; this includes heating, gutters, drains, external pipes and water, gas, electricity and sanitation installations. Read more...
Furniture and soft furnishings must comply with fire regulations and you must have evidence of compliance. We can advise you of any exclusions. Read more...
Legionella occurs naturally within water and the water supply. This makes every property a potential risk to any occupier. As a landlord, you are legally obliged to have a risk assessment to ensure that your tenants risk of exposure is properly assessed and controlled. Heywoods will organise this for you.
A registered GAS SAFE engineer must annually inspect all gas appliances, pipes and meters, otherwise landlords are considered responsible for any fatalities caused by faulty appliances. We can arrange for approved engineers to inspect your property at competitive rates. Read more...
Electrical equipment must comply with The Electrical Equipment (Safety) Regulations 1994. We can arrange for a qualified electrician to carry out inspections and offer advice. Read more...
Landlords are required to install at least one smoke alarm on every storey of a property and a carbon monoxide alarm in any room containing a solid fuel burning appliance (eg a coal fire, wood burning stove). The landlord must make sure the alarms are in working order at the start of each new tenancy. Read more...
Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)
An EPC must be in place before a tenancy begins, by law. If you don’t have a valid certificate we can organise an inspection for you. The better the energy efficiency rating, the more attractive your property is to prospective tenants; we can advise you on how to improve your property’s rating.
Before a tenancy commences, find out from your insurance company whether your buildings and contents are adequately insured for letting a property. As a landlord, you are responsible for fully insuring your property and any contents against fire, theft, flood etc, however some policies are not valid for letting. Heywoods can recommend a suitable insurance provider.
The income you gain from letting a property, minus the cost of allowable expenses, is subject to income tax, whether you live in the UK or abroad, and must be declared on your tax return. The team at Heywoods can advise you on tax implications.
Non-UK resident landlords
If you live for more than six months outside the UK, we are required by law to deduct basic rate tax from the rent we receive on your behalf, and pay this to HMRC (read more on this). However, the Non-Resident Landlord Scheme means you can apply to receive your rent without deducting tax here, quoting our reference number: NA026820. Ask your accountant or tax adviser for advice.