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Vanessa Warwick Landlord and Co-Founder of PropertyTribes.com **If you have got value from Property Tribes, find out how you can support it in remaining a free to use community resource**
We are being approached more and more now by accidental landlords who want to exit but dont want to evict their tenant.Although we like choosing our own tenants we are not averse to this as quite often theres a deal to be done.The list above is very good but intially the most important questions for us are:-1/ Is there a properly prepared AST and can i see it? - I never cease to be amazed how many landlords dont bother or create their own which isnt worth the paper its written on.2/ How do they pay and have there been any issues ?3/ Are they working or LHA and is there a guarantor?I will then drive by, at least 3 times at different times of the day mid-morning, tea-time and late evening..I particiularly want to know1/ Is the tenant taking care of the property or is there rubbish piled up on the front of the property2/ Are the curtains opened during the day? This drives me nuts, bad tenants dont open curtains or windows - Its always a tell-tale sign3/ Do people congregate outside- groups of kids etc.If we then progress the purchase we would obviously inspect the property, talk to the tenant, ask then if they are happy and if they have any issues with the property, check out who is living there (If its a single mum and child , are there signs of a guy living there too? He may be working, making the LHA claim fraudulent) and depending on gut instinct we may ask them to provide info for a credit check.
Stewardson Developments Ltd.
Burson Land Ltd. & Jennings & Gilchreaste Ltd.
Follow me on twitter - @philstewardson
Tessa Shepperon Landlord Law | Landlord Law Blog |
Vanessa,I perhaps did not explain very well, I didn't mean tenants closing the curtains during the day, I meant more never opening curtains or windows.. Always a tell-tale sign of a bad tenant as well as a cause for ventilation/condensation issues.
talk to the tenants or rather get the tenants to talk to you. If they know their landlord is selling with them in situ they have a vested interest in a potential new landlord.Its surprising what info you can glean from an informal chat and the tenant can give info about the property and themselves without thinking.If its a single mum type tenant then get the wife along and get them chatting to the tenant whilst cooing over the baby. Getting peoples guard down can produce all sorts of interesting information pertaining to tenant and property..
On the deposit I would check that all the prescribed information has been served at every renewal etc and ask to see it.For HMOs I would also check planning status and whether the council tax valuation officer has been in touch. If there is a superior lease has permission to sublet been sought and will there be a fee for further sub-lets
Just up-dating this with a new thread:Purchase - existing tenant interview questions
Great discussion topic Vanessa and a really helpful check-list! Great comments from everyone above too!
At Vesta Property we help landlords to buy and sell tenanted property. Buyers we deal with almost always ask for the following information:
Of course, 3., 4. and 5. can all be found in the AST. However, it's interesting to hear those questions.
3. and 4. are for risk mitigation (e.g. what happens if things sour and the new landlord needs to start proceedings to remove a tenant, and what's the extent of the deposit to cover any appropriate damages). Whilst 5. demonstrates how attached the tenant is to the property (if they've been there a long-time) and may also help to justify situations where the rental income is a bit below market value.
Like MatthewS says, the tenants should have a vested interest in a new landlord buying the property, and of course they'll become your customer. So get to know them!
Great thread Vanessa, great tick list of questions for an investor/landlord in this situation.