Glossary of Terms for Landlords

Are you a first-time landlord? It can be hard enough letting a property without the added confusion of some of the industry terms used by letting agents, tenants, contractors, and other vendors in the property market industry.

We have gathered to help landlords old and new, with a glossary of useful terms.

Alternative Dispute Resolution ADR (“ADR”) – refers to the means of settling disputes outside the court. The common forms are arbitration and mediation.

Arrears – refers to the money owed such as unpaid rent. If the tenant has two months unpaid rent, there are “two months in arrears”.

AST – stands for Assured Shorthold Tenancy. The main feature of this type of tenancy is the landlord can evict a tenant without a reason, but the landlord must follow the eviction procedure – giving a notice to tenant and getting a court order for eviction. The contract can be fixed term or periodic.

Buy-to-let (“BTL”) – refers to buying a property to rent out.

Client Money Protection (“CMP”) -  refers to a scheme to protect money such as rent and deposit monies, if an agent could not give back the money.

Deposit – it is the sum of money that the tenant agrees to place with a landlord at the start of the tenancy which acts as a financial safety net for any deductions needed at the end of the tenancy. The deposit should be protected through a Government approved Tenancy Deposit Protection Scheme.

Electrical Inspection Condition Report (“EICR”) – It is a formal document that is carried out by a registered electrician to identify the condition of the property. This is done every 5 years in rental properties.

Energy Performance Certificate (“EPC) – It is an energy efficiency rating of the property  from the most efficient (A) to the least efficient (G). All privately owned properties must have an EPC before they can be let or sold.

Furnished – If the rental property includes furniture and appliances that a person needs to live in. Furnished property usually have higher rental rate.

Gas Safety Check – It is done annually by a Gas Safe registered engineer.

Guarantor – is someone who cosigns the rental lease. A guarantor acts as a guarantee in situations when tenant could not pay the rent. The landlord can legally ask a guarantor to pay the rent if the tenant fails to.

HMO – stands for House in Multiple Occupation. This is when a house is shared by more than one household.

Property Inventory – It is a documentation of all the contents and condition of a property. Check-in inventory is a document of the property at the start of tenancy. At the end of the tenancy, this documentation is referenced for any changes of the condition of the property. Having a thorough property inventory at the start of the tenancy helps avoid disputes at the end of the tenancy.

Letting Agent – refers to the third-party company that manages the property on behalf of the landlord.

PAT – stands for Portable Appliance Test which is an examination to ensure that the electrical equipment is safe to use.

PCM – stands for “Price per Calendar Month” and this refers to the monthly rental fee of the property.

Section 21  - Section 21 notice is a notice that a landlord must give the tenant to begin the eviction process. This can be done after a fixed term tenancy ends or during a tenancy with no fixed end date.

Stamp Duty Land Tax (“STDL”) – this is a tax paid on any property purchased over a certain price.

Tenancy Deposit Scheme (“TDP”) – is a government backed scheme that guarantees tenants get their deposits back as long as the terms of tenancy agreement are met, and no damages done to the property at the end of the tenancy.

Unfurnished – If the rental property does not include any furniture. The tenants will be responsible for furnishing of the property throughout their tenancy.

Valuation – refers to the assessment of the value property or how much the property can be rented out or sold.

Wear and tear – refers to the gradual damage of the property over time.  

If you are a landlord or a letting agent, Hamilton James Property Inventories can help you with your property inventory needs. Feel free to contact us at 0208 769 7488, you may also visit our website