With the new university terms approaching, a large number of students are preparing to move into their new rental properties for the forthcoming academic year. As a landlord, you need to make sure you are complying with the various laws in place to help protect your tenants.
We’ve teamed up with the Department for Communities to bring you some valuable advice for making sure you comply with your legal obligations as a landlord!
By law, all private landlords who are renting a residential property in Northern Ireland must be registered with the Landlord Registration Scheme – this is a statutory scheme introduced by the government, to help raise standards in the private rented sector by promoting good practice and by acting as an educational tool for landlords.
Failure to comply with the legislation can result in you being fined up to £2,500, so make sure you are clued up – for full details regarding the Landlord Registration Scheme, click here.
Tenancy Deposit Schemes
Another key requirement for private landlords is the tenancy deposit scheme. When you take on a new tenant who pays you a deposit, you are required by law to protect that money with any of the government authorised schemes, such as my|deposits NI.
The schemes are in place to offer an unbiased dispute resolution service in the event that there is a deposit dispute at the end of a tenancy.
As a landlord, you have 14 days from the date you received the deposit to protect it with the scheme, and another 14 days to provide the tenant with proof that you have done this.
If you fail to protect the deposits within the allotted time frame, the local council can serve a fixed penalty notice at the value of three times the deposit amount. If the council takes the case to court you could face a fine of up to £20,000.
For full details on the tenancy deposit protection law, click here.