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Caerphilly Private Landlord Forum - did you miss it?  Read our latest "Newsletter"
The Chairman Greg Rowlands opened the meeting on Monday 18th January 2016 by welcoming everyone and he thanked a record number of landlords and agents for giving up their time to attend and support the Caerphilly Private Landlord Forum. 

 
John Dutton and Sarah Thomas from Nuaire were invited to attend the forum as condensation in rented properties is a major concern for most landlords.  Nuaire have a number of cost effective solutions to resolving this problem by using a method of extracting moisture and replacing it with good quality air.  John's presentation started with the reasons why we need to ventilate he then proceeded to tell us about the effects of not having proper ventilation, how moisture is generated in the home causing condensation and he finished his presentation with how nuiare can provide a solution.  Nuiaire over 40 years ago invented a Positive Input Ventilation system and it is now the UK's most popular method of low-energy whole home ventilation.

To read John's full presentation log onto www.caerphillyprivatelandlords.co.uk

To find out more about Nuiaire range of products such as the Flatmaster and Drimaster contact Sarah Thomas, Sales Coordinator on 029 2085 8386

 Claire Davies, Principal Housing Officer with Caerphilly County Borough Council was invited to come along to the forum and provide an overview of the new law and its requirements for landlords and agents in our area.


Claire commenced her presentation by firstly apologising to those landlords who had attended past forum's and may have heard similar presentations on "Rent Smart Wales", however, she was aware that 20 new landlords were present and her presentation contained up to date information since the law's inception on November 23rd 2015.

A brief outline of what "Rent Smart Wales" encompasses, some background on the Private Rented Sector in Wales and the legislative requirements was given.  Claire then went on to talk about the actual registration - who needs to register and Licensing who needs to be Licensed to comply with  Part 1 of the Housing (Wales) Act 2014 and why.  To summaries all Landlords have to register.  If a Landlord "Lets" or "Manages" rental properties they must apply for a License.  All letting Agents and their staff who undertake letting and management activities will need to obtain a license.  A definitive list of Landlord and Agent Letting Activities and Landlord and Agent Property Management Activities can be found on Claire's presentation.

Claire went onto talk about "The Code of Practice", Training and Enforcement.  The Enforcement tools available will include, rent stopping orders, prosecutions and more.  Enforcement will commence in November this year.

To read the full presentation log onto our landlord website www.caerphillyprivatelandlords.co.uk  where you will also find a list of fees for Registering and Licensing.

 

 

 

 


 
INFORMATION ITEM

During Karl Rivers Presentation he made reference to the following which Landlords/Agents should be aware of:

The Energy Act 2011 makes provisions to ensure that from April 2016, private residential landlords will be unable to refuse a tenants’ reasonable request for consent to energy efficiency improvements, where a finance package, such as the Green Deal and/or the Energy Company Obligation (ECO), is available. Provisions in the Act also provide for powers to ensure that from April 2018, it will be unlawful to rent out a residential or business premise that does not reach a minimum energy efficiency standard (the intention is for this to be set at EPC rating “E”). These requirements will be subject to there being no upfront financial cost to landlords; therefore, landlords will have fulfilled the requirement if they have reached “E” or carried out the maximum package of measures funded under the Green Deal and/or ECO.

 

OVER TO YOU!!

The Agenda for our next forum has been set.  A copy of which will be sent out to you all in due course (if Donna has your email address)?  The Chairman Greg Rowlands, however, invites Landlords/Agents to make suggestions on what topics you would like us to cover in future Forum's?  What would you like to be updated on?  Is there any information you require?  Please let us now and we will make every effort to include your chosen topics.

You can send your requests via our contact us section on our website - www.caerphillyprivatelandlords.co.uk or email Donna Elliott who will pass on your request. elliod@caerphilly.gov.uk

 

DATE FOR YOUR DIARIES

Our next landlord forum will be held on Monday 11th April 2016 at Ty Penallta Council Offices, Ystrad Mynach.

Please note:
Access to Ty Penallta is limited after office working hours.  The doors will be open up to 17.55hrs.  If possible please come early for a prompt start at 18.00hrs.  I understand that this is sometimes difficult because of work commitments etc. and we do not wish to discourage any landlord/agent from attending so if you do intend joining us and need access to the building after 17.55hrs just drop me an email elliod@caerphilly.gov.uk so that we can open the doors for you.  Hope to see you all on the 11th April. 

 

Karl Rivers Environmental Health Officer with Caerphilly County Borough Council was our second speaker of the night.


We asked Karl to talk about the Housing Health & Safety Rating System and to enlighten landlords on the "Top Ten" hazards found in rented properties and how landlords can avoid enforcement from the Environmental Health Team?

Karl started his presentations by outlining the principles and aims of the HHSRS system.  Karl explained that they have to look at what effects a fault could cause, does it have the potential to harm and what would be the ideal if the hazard was removed?

The process of the HHSRS is complex and Karl explained that a numerical score is determined by identifying the type of hazard the likelihood of causing harm and the severity of the outcome.  There are four classifications Class 1 being extreme to Class 4 being moderate.  

Karl then touched on the actions available to EHO's to serve upon the landlord, however, Karl and his colleagues would prefer to speak to landlords and work with them to avoid formal action being taken.

Karl's presentation was informative and photographic evidence was shown of some of the hazards they have come across in Caerphilly.

To view Karl's full presentation and to see what the "Top Ten" hazards are log onto www.caerphillyprivatelandlords.co.uk.  


 
Douglas Haig from the Residential Landlord Association is a valued supporter of Caerphilly Private Landlord Forum who is always happy to speak to landlords about becoming members of the RLA.  Douglas informed everyone that the RLA have been designated as an approved training provider for "Rent Smart Wales".  
Douglas is currently offering landlords a special deal whereby you can sign up for a training course to become licensed and receive a years membership to the RLA for just £90.00!  To get this deal telephone: 03330 142998 (choose option 3 then 4). or email info@rla.org.uk

 

Steve Jones from Caswell Jones Solicitors from Caerphilly.


Steve was our last speaker of the evening.  Steve was invited to give a brief talk and give landlords some pointers and identify the pitfalls of buying property at auction.

Here are a few tips to consider prior to buying property at auction:
  • All properties going to auction will be identified in an auction catalogue.  It is imperative that you look at the property for yourself rather than relying on the catalogues description.
  • Ask a Solicitor to have a look at the auction pack and check it's legality with regard to the lease conditions etc. prior to the auction.
  • Auction packs are often not available until a few days before the auction, however, you are able to check the packs on-line which is advisable.
  • Register your interest in a property in advance and always take along identification to the auction.
  •  Properties do not usually sell at the guide price and it is sometimes prudent to make an offer for the property with the Auctioneer prior to it reaching the actual auction.
  • If the property comes with land check with the planning authority that it is suitable for building.
  • Carry out the usual property land, water,drainage searches.
  • The sale of a property at auction is confirmed when the auctioneers gavel falls.  At this point the successful bidder is immediately under a binding contract.  Completion is expected to be between 21 to 28 days.  Failure to comply could result in penalties being imposed or your initial deposit forfeited.
These tips are for guidance only.  If you are considering purchasing property at auction you should always consult with auction professionals and Solicitors.

If you wish to speak to Steve for more information or advice you could contact him on: 01443 816622.
Contact Donna Elliott - 01495 235378 or elliod@caerphilly.gov.uk -

IF YOU HAVE:

- A property to let and want to advertise it on the CCBC housing website  free of charge.-
- A tenant who is struggling to find their top-up part of their rent. Donna will be able to put you in touch with someone to assist with applying for  a DHP (Discretionary Housing Payment).
- A portfolio of properties in our Borough.   Why not let us put your details onto our landlord website.  Tell us what type of properties you have, (1 bed, 2 bed etc.) and where they are plus a contact number.  This way you may get tenants lined up ready to rent when one of your properties becomes available. You could vet them in advance to assess their suitability?  Could reduce void times?
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