Lettings Blog

What makes us different?

This April (2022) sees us celebrate the 30th anniversary of Richard James, after opening our doors in Wroughton back in 1992. Since then, we’ve been fortunate enough to help clients of multiple generations find their dream homes and have expanded across 8 offices that cover Wiltshire, Oxfordshire and Gloucestershire. As well as Sales, we are also home to Richard James Lettings, Land & New Homes,...

FAQ’s for Buy-To-Let Investors

With our Sales and Lettings businesses under one roof, we regularly hear from investors looking to invest in properties that they will later rent out using our property management service. That coupled with the abundance of apartments in Swindon, which in our opinion are ideal buy-to-let investments, means we often get asked the same questions regarding the local area, the current market and other...

Landlords, did you know you could be liable for unpaid utility bills or reconnection fees?

Landlords should be aware that they could be liable for any unpaid utility bills, and even reconnection fees if they don’t correctly manage the end of tenancy process with regards to utilities. We've put together a ‘best practice' guide regarding tenants’ utility services to help you have a successful tenancy, without facing any unexpected fees.  Who is responsible...

A Guide to Becoming a Landlord

Whether you’ve deliberately made the decision to invest in a buy-to-let property or you’re one of the country’s rising number of ‘accidental landlords’ and you’ve found yourself in a position where, for whatever reason, you need to rent out a home, you must understand your responsibilities before you welcome your first tenants. There are a lot of rules in place that apply to landlords and...

April 2020: Changes in regulations for low-rated Energy Performance Certificates (EPC’s)

A lot of landlords are still unaware of the regulations for MEES (minimum energy efficiency standard) and what it entails. So, we thought we'd break it down for you: The previous changes that came about in 2018, meant that landlords of low scoring properties were required to conduct repairs or changes to their properties to upgrade them to band E or higher, once their current tenant had vacated....

Top Letting Tip #1 – Calculating Rental Yields

This is first in a series of 'Top Letting Tips' and it is all about calculating your rental yields. Rental yields are one of the most important considerations for any new or current landlords. Rental yield helps you decide whether or not a property is a sound investment and it is also used as a factor when considering the affordability of buy-to-let mortgages.  SO, WHAT EXACTLY IS RENTAL...

What are the benefits of a pet-friendly property?

Deciding whether to allow pets in your rental property can be a difficult decision to make. A simple 'no' may be the easiest option in most cases, but is it the best one? Allowing tenants to have pets widens your prospective pool of paying tenants, and you can easily protect your property with a carefully worded tenancy agreement. Since so many landlords do not allow pets, you could ask for a slightly but...

Void Periods: How to avoid them?

Landlords naturally panic at the thought of their properties being empty for any length of time. So, if you are dreading long void periods and want to avoid them at all costs, then review our top ten tips: 1. MAINTAIN YOUR PROPERTY TO A HIGH STANDARD It is a competitive market, so tenants expect rental properties to be kept in good decorative order, with up-to-date kitchens and bathrooms.  2. REMEMBER...

Top 5 things to do pre-tenancy

Did you know we can take the burden out of preparing your property from you? At Richard James, we are happy to prepare everything needed to ensure that your tenants are moved in safely and legally. We cross all of the T's and dot all of the I's and let you relax, by keeping it simple!  We have listed the top 5 steps below... 1. MAKE SURE YOUR PROPERTY IS SAFE: You, as the Landlord, have a duty to...

Pre-tenancy checks and why they’re so crucial

Landlords, do you have time to deal with all the crucial pre-tenancy checks, to ensure you've found the RIGHT tenant?What if we could alleviate the potential stress associated with pre-tenancy checks, and remove it from your hands completely? As letting agents, we filter out any tenants who have serious adverse credit/ history, low affordability, and a history of anti-social...

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