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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

'Create a rental property MOT certificate' says top inventories firm

The UK’s largest provider of inventory services says the creation of an MOT certificate system for properties in the rental sector is the next logical step to improve standards. 

"As we can see from the work the government is doing around the  private rental sector, this innovation would fit squarely with their aims and mark another step towards raising the standard of privately rented properties," says Nick Lyons, chief executive and founder of No Letting Go.

"An MOT report, ensuring a property meets a minimum standard, alongside an independently and professionally compiled inventory would ensure that everything about a property's condition and contents is suitably documented at the start of a tenancy" he explains.

"This would protect all sides of the rental transaction and reduce the chances of either landlords or tenants being unfairly left out of pocket at the end of a contract. Landlords should no longer be able to get away with letting shabby properties to tenants with no other choice."

No Letting Go says the MOT idea has already been put forward in the recent review of the private rental sector conducted by University of York academics Dr Julie Rugg and David Rhodes.

Their report, released in the early autumn, advocated MOT-style reports with minimum standards required to indicate whether a property was fit for letting.

The MOT idea has also been backed by ARLA Propertymark, whose chief executive says a certificate concept may be less complicated and more practical than many other alternatives. 

No Letting Go says MOT-style reports would complement the Homes (Fitness for Human Habitation) Bill which is set to become law this spring. The measure requires homes to be fit for human habitation before letting with the aim of reducing problems such as damp, mould and unsafe living conditions.

The legislation will also give tenants powers to take legal action against their landlord in the courts for breach of contract if their property is not fit for human habitation.

  • Paul Smithson

    Sounds like another sticker on your agency window, why can’t we have a bad tenants list ?

  • icon

    Another parasite operator feeding off landlord bashing, campaigning for things to generate work for them

  • SCN Lettings

    Agreed. With Section 24, Tenant Fee Ban, the last thing we need is another layer of regulation. We already have Gas Safe, EPC, Deposit Protection, Legionella, and soon to be electrical certs for standard rentals. Landlords ( and agents) have had enough.

  • icon

    Woah, think this through. Yes, some recent measures such as tax changes are hurting landlords. But do you really thing gas/electric/furniture regs etc are an unnecessary burden?

    Assuming you think safety is a good idea, do you not bundle the documentation? If you do, that’s pretty much an MoT. And agency software will do the work, as with deposits.

    The difference is the information could be held on a portal, where tenants and enforcement agencies can check it’s in place. Problem with that?

    The sweet bit is that it could be made an offence for not providing the information. So, no need for enforcement agencies to go digging. Provide or get fined. Makes it much easier to hit the rogues. Property let? Yes. MoT in place? No. Fined.

    Making what you do transparent (assuming you do what you should) is an advert for the good agents, helping to rebuild trust between agent and tenant, and a means of getting rid of the rogue agents. Bleating about providing safety information says what about the industry’s attitude to their customers, exactly? Small wonder government are regulating.

  • Kristjan Byfield

    An MOT style certificate is, in my eyes, a great idea. One of the frustrations with the current legislative framework is that good agents & landlords will comply- but where is the transparency that they do this. Likewise, where is the transparency of highlighting the agents & landlords who knowingly breach regs? Some landlords are still unaware of an array of regs and, again, a system like this would force them to comply and, upon realising the workload, turn to agents to fulfil this. A certificate could potentially be populated with a lot of the necessary data gathered from 3rd parties so the agency workload could actually be relatively limited and, over time, should become entirely automated.

  • icon

    Surprise that an Inventory company is suggesting even more regulation that allows them to charge for an Extra service, almost as bad as the Fitness for Human Habitation Act - providing more legal Aid work for solicitors ( who would have you believe they don't want it - nah, who wants more money !!! )

  • S l
    • S l
    • 09 January 2019 19:36 PM

    Again another agency to rake in the bashing of prs. The council are already charging hefty licence fee n they are doing that anyway, that would be multiple agency double work and of course double fee. Is there no solution to housing crisis which council are suppose to provide instead of diverting attention from their failures??

  • Kathy Taylor

    Sounds like a sensible idea, but then who is going to pay for it and who is going to police it? Annual gas safety checks are a legal requirement but we know full well that not all Landlords get them done. It would just be more legislation that reputable agents and landlords would adhere to and dodgy ones would ignore....

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