Author Archives: painsmithblog

Landlord banned

On 16 August 2019 the First Tier Tribunal issued a landlord with a 5-year banning order. There was a long interaction between the landlord and local authority who applied for both a banning order and rent repayment order. For the purposes of this post we will concentrate on the banning order. The landlord had been […]

Brent and Harrow Trading standards

Brent and Harrow Trading Standards have carried out checks on agent’s websites to ensure that they are complying with the Tenant Fees Act and other relevant legislation applicable in the Private rented sector. Having investigated 67 letting agent’s websites in both Brent and Harrow, Trading Standards officers have found that just 14 appear to be […]

Signature on deposit prescribed information

In a previous post we discussed the case of Bali v Manaquel. However, this issue continues to raise its head in the county courts and appears to be a common defence for a number of tenants facing possession proceedings. In Bali v Manaquel the tenant argued that the Prescribed Information served on him pursuant to […]

Tenants to pay tax

A number of newspapers have reported that tenants with overseas landlords have received letters from HMRC advising them that they may have to withhold rent to help settle their landlords’ tax liability. We have not seen these letters, but we understand that thousands have been sent to tenants and overseas landlords. The letters are not […]

London landlord fined

A London landlord who divided his 3-bedroom house into 8 flats without planning permission has been fined £90,000 and ordered to pay a confiscation order under the Proceeds of Crime Act of £400,000. In addition to the fine and confiscation order the landlord was also ordered to pay £40,000 in costs. The landlord converted his […]

When to serve the updated How to Rent guide

The How to Rent Guide was updated in May of this year to reflect the changes introduced by the Tenant Fees Act. Further minor amendments have followed which we have discussed in previous posts. As a consequence of these updates many people on the Painsmith helpline are asking whether they need to serve the updated […]

‘Pet rent’

With the advent of the Tenant Fees Act 2019 (2019 Act) many agents have been trying to find ways to manage pets in rental properties. A logical solution is currently receiving a lot of bad publicity but landlords have been left with little or no option. Under the 2019 Act deposits are limited to 5 […]

Inventory clerks

An increasing number of letting agents have agreements with independent inventory clerks for check ins and check outs. However, not all agents, specify the standards that these clerks must meet. Check in and check out inventories are usually compiled by a clerk on behalf of either the agent or landlord. A good check in inventory […]

Split Commission

In some local markets in the UK it is not uncommon for agents from different companies to work together to arrange private rental property deals. Essentially one agent will have the property and therefore the relationship with the landlord and the other agent will have been approached by a tenant who will suit that property. […]

Updated Contracts

At Painsmith we are always reviewing and updating our contracts in line with new legislation. An updated inventory clerk contract is now available and a sub agency contract will be available shortly. For those wishing to purchase these contracts please call the office on 01420 565310.

Serving a Section 21 notice

Following the government’s announcement to end section 21 notices we have received enquiries about when these notices should be served and particularly whether landlords or agents should serve notice now in order to protect their position. The government announced that they wish to consult on abolishing section 21 notices in April this year. The consultation […]

Tenant Fees Ban Wales – Reminder

On Sunday, 1 September the Renting Homes (fees etc) (Wales) Act came into force. This means that landlords and agents with properties in Wales will no longer be able to charge fees for new tenancies or renewals. Our previous post on the Act can be read here. This Act is similar to the Tenant Fees Act […]

Private tenants “right to buy”

The Shadow Chancellor has suggested that the Labour party may introduce a “right to buy” scheme to help private tenants buy their rented properties at a ‘reasonable’ price if they were to win the next election. Shadow chancellor John McDonnell has suggested that they would consider introducing a right to buy scheme for private tenants. […]

Gas Safety – update

The Court of Appeal has listed the hearing of Trecarrell House Limited v Rouncefield at the end of January 2020. Readers of the blog will note our previous post on this case. In summary, a tenant defended a section 21 possession case on the basis that the landlord had not provided the gas safety certificate […]

Airbnb – a warning

Westminster council has successfully prosecuted a council tenant for sub-letting his apartment in Victoria, Central London, to a large number of tourists over several years. The council tenant was advertising his apartment using a fake profile on Airbnb. There are conflicting reports on how the council became aware of the subletting. However, it is likely […]

Club or agent?

Islington Borough Council has successfully prosecuted a director of a company for trying to  pass a letting agency off as a membership club to avoid the relevant legislation. The London based company is said to have pressured tenants to sign a contract without inspecting the terms or the accommodation, charged them a non-refundable ‘joining fee’ […]

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