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New/Prospective Landlords

What is an EPC?

An EPC, or Energy Performance Certificate, gives information of how energy efficient your home is as well as making suggestions as to how it can be improved. All properties which to be rented require an EPC, which we can arrange for you if you do not have one.

How long does an EPC last?

EPCs are valid for ten years.

How much does it cost for an EPC?

For details of the cost of an EPC please contact the office on 01449 616666.

Do I need to have an electrical test?

The majority of landlords are proactive when it comes to ensuring the safety of their tenants and make a welcome contribution to the housing market. But a minority fail to do so, putting their tenants in danger as a result.

The current Regulations require landlords to have the electrical installations in their properties inspected and tested by a person who is qualified and competent, at an interval of at least every 5 years. Landlords have to provide a copy of the electrical safety report EICR to their tenants, and to their local authority if requested.

This means that all landlords now have to do what good landlords already do: make sure the electrical installations in their rented properties are safe.

The Regulations came into force on 1 June 2020 and form part of the Department’s wider work to improve safety in all residential premises and particularly in the private rented sector.

Will I need to have a gas check?

If you have any gas appliance (fire, cooker, boiler etc) in your property there is a legal requirement to have it inspected by a registered gas-safe engineer and a landlords certificate produced.

How often will I need to have my gas inspected?

The legal requirement is to have a landlords gas safety inspection annually.

How much does a gas inspection cost?

For details of the cost of a gas inspection please contact the office on 01449 616666.

I’m planning to move abroad. Do I need to do anything?

Not if you’re planning to be abroad for less than six months. If you are planning to be abroad for six months or more you need to contact the Inland Revenue to register as a non-resident landlord. For more details please contact the office on 01449 616666.

Existing Landlords

Can I have access to my property during a tenancy?

Yes, by prior agreement with the tenant and adequate notice which should never be less than 24 hours.

What if I want to decorate during a tenancy?

Not recommended unless it’s to the outside of the property and again this has to be done with notice and the tenants’ agreement. Otherwise we suggest it’s dealt with at a break in the tenancy.

Can I have my property back during a tenancy?

Usually not during the initial six month fixed term agreement and even then only by giving the appropriate notice of not less than two months. You may have to get a court order to regain possession but you do have to demonstrate the exceptional circumstances justifying your breaking the terms of the agreement.

New/Prospective Tenants

I’m a smoker, is that an issue?

All of our properties are non smoking properties. If you decide to smoke in the property, then you will be charged for cleaning and possibly re-decoration for breaching the terms of your tenancy agreement, please smoke outside the property.

Do you accept pets?

It is a landlords decision whether they will accept pets in their property. Some simply don’t want any, whereas some may accept only cats or only dogs. The best thing to do is declare what you want to take in there and we will advise at the outset. Please refer to each property profile or call the office to see which of our current properties accept pets.

How long does the application process take?

Provided that you have supplied all the relevant information and documents it should take no longer than five working days – although the majority are completed well within this time.

Will I need a guarantor?

If you need a guarantor Shorts will let you know. If you are close to or do not meet the income quota (i;e 30 X ‘the rent’), you may need a guarantor. Also you may need a guarantor if you have just started a new job or have not been in employment for a full year. For more information contact the office.

Existing Tenants

Your board is still outside, do I need to do anything?

No. Please do not take down our board. We will be sending our contractor to collect the board so it needs to be where it was left. Normally, the board will be collected the next working day. However, do not worry if it isn’t, it will be collected as soon as possible.

What do I do with other peoples’ post?

For all post which is not addressed to you we suggest you write “gone away” and re-post. However if there is post addressed to the landlord please contact us or drop into the office and we will forward it.

How do I report a fault/problem?

During active office hours (see our opening hours) just call the office or send us an email and report the fault. Outside office hours, you could leave a message on our answer machine or send us an email. The best way to report a non emergency is by email with any associated images (where necessary) that way we have a written record of the fault and can deal with it asap.

I’ve got a fault, when will it be fixed?

We do try to get to every problem and resolve it as quickly as possible. Please bear in mind that we may have to get in contact with the landlord to authorise some repairs. The most important thing to keep in mind is that we cannot resolve any issue instantly. Anything reported on Friday evening or on a Saturday may not be looked at until the following Monday at the earliest, especially if it is non urgent. Try to report issues as early in the day and quickly as possible to prevent any delay.

Can I decorate?

Only with your landlord’s prior agreement. Provided that permission is given for a specific colour scheme, you may decorate. Should you decorate without permission you may have to restore the original colours at the end of the tenancy.

Can I hang posters and pictures etc on the walls?

In moderation only and it’s best to ask and get written approval first but beware, if the fixings and marks on the wall are obvious you may be asked to fill, ‘make good’ and redecorate when you move out.


  • RICS
  • Property Redress Scheme
  • Safe Agent