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Painsmith Blog

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The Queen’s Speech

The Tenants’ Fees Bill was announced in the Queen’s Speech on Wednesday. The Bill is designed to stop tenants having to pay letting agent’s fees and limit deposits. The ban was first proposed by the Chancellor in his Autumn statement of 2016 and a subsequent consultation paper has been published. The consultation was concluded at […]

Challenging the Right to Rent scheme

Last month the Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants (JCWI) wrote to the Home Secretary challenging the decision to roll out the Right to Rent scheme to Northern Ireland, Wales and Scotland. The Right to Rent scheme places a positive obligation on landlords to ensure that they do not rent to people who do […]

Block Management and Grenfell Tower

Following on from the tragic events of last week the DCLG issued guidance to all local authorities and Housing Associations in respect of fire safety checks predominantly aimed at cladding of blocks of flats. In particular concerns have been raised over what is known as Aluminium Composite Materials (ACM). The Department is arranging procedures so […]

Right to Rent Checks

The Immigration Act 2014 made it mandatory for landlords or their agents to carry out Right to Rent document checks on all tenants and or occupiers past ( i.e. all new tenancies which commenced on or after 1 February 2016) and present. Essentially these checks were expected to ensure that only those with a legal […]

Right to Rent – Ending a tenancy

If a landlord knows or they or the Home Office believe that someone living in their property in England is not permitted to rent due to their immigration status (“disqualified person”) then the tenancy should be terminated as soon as legally possible. If landlords fail to take prompt action they could face an unlimited fine […]

Selective Licensing and Planning

In the recent case of London Borough of Waltham Forest v Khan, the Upper Tribunal held that a local authority can consider the planning status of a property when considering an application for a selective licence. What is selective licensing (SL)? Properties that are not subject to HMO licensing could be covered under a SL […]

Money Laundering Regulations 2017

On 26th June 2017, the Fourth Anti-Money Laundering Directive (4MLD) will come into effect. The Directive replaces the Third Anti-Money Laundering Directive, which was implemented in the UK by way of the Money Laundering Regulations 2007. The Directive aims to prevent Europe’s financial system from being used for tax evasion, terrorist financing and money laundering. […]

Cannabis Farms

Cannabis farms in rented accommodation have been a problem for landlords for several years. Criminals appear to prefer spreading farms around multiple locations to ensure that production continues even when one farm is discovered and closed. It is this need for multiple locations which leads the criminals to rented or squatted property. For landlords, the […]

London Mayor database

The London Mayor has announced that a new on-line database will be created naming and shaming landlords and lettings agents who have been successfully prosecuted for housing offences. The on-line database is expected to go live this autumn. The Mayor is hoping that tenants wishing to rent in London will access the database to check […]

Reminder – Gatwick Seminar 24th May 

We have a handful of places left for the forthcoming Seminar in Gatwick. The Seminar will take place on Wednesday 24th May 2017 at the Hilton Hotel, South Terminal, Gatwick Airport RH6 0LL. Topics to be covered include the Right to Rent and Immigration Act 2016, Housing and Planning Act 2016 and Trips and slips to […]

Election – Update

The Homelessness Reduction Bill has now been made an Act of parliament having received Royal Assent on April 27th. Many feared that this Bill would not be made an Act prior to the dissolution of Parliament for the general election called by Theresa May and might be lost. However, this Bill in addition to another […]


Teresa May’s announcement of a general election on June 8th, will have an impact on the upcoming Housing legislation. Some of that legislation is likely to be either delayed and may even be lost if a new Housing Minister is appointed as they may have other ideas. Banning letting agents fees. The consultation is continuing. […]

Mortgage Interest Tax Relief

From April 6th, this year, tax relief on mortgage interest payments for landlords was restricted to the basic rate of (20%) income tax. Prior to April 6th, landlords could claim tax relief on their mortgage interest payments. This meant that landlords could offset their mortgage interest against their rental income for the purposes of self-assessment. […]

Leaks and Flooding – who is responsible?

If you live in a flat you may have issues with leaks and flooding from neighbouring flats, especially those above. Where such issues exist, tenants are likely to look to their landlord to make good, but it is not always that simple. Where a leak or flooding damages the structure such as walls, plasterwork or […]

Tobacco Tax evasion

In February, HM Revenue and Customs published a consultation paper on further measures to help tackle tobacco duty evasion and other excise duty evasion. Part 6 of the consultation paper discusses imposing a statutory duty of care on landlords where a tobacco offence has been committed. A tobacco offence includes the importation and sale of […]

Banning letting agent fees paid by tenants

The Government has published its consultation paper on banning letting agent fees paid by tenants. The consultation is expected to last for 8 weeks until the 2 June 2017. The Government is keen on banning letting agent fees in the hope that it will improve competition in the market and give tenants greater clarity and […]

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