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You may be aware that the Government has recently published four new guides aimed at helping both private rental landlords and their tenants. The guides – part of a new ‘How To’ series, have been put in place to provide more information on the Government’s official advice for the private rented sector in England. The guides were released at the end of June by the Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government, and are available for free from the Government’s website.

The four guides cover ‘How to rent’ and ‘How to rent a safe home’, intended for current and prospective tenants; ‘How to let’, for current and potential landlords; and ‘How to lease’, for current and future leaseholders.

‘How to rent’ looks at the various rights and responsibilities of tenants and landlords in the private rented sector. A checklist is provided and covers “what to look out for before renting”; “living in a rented home”; “what happens at the end of a tenancy”; and “what to do if things go wrong”.

‘How to rent a safe home’, meanwhile, focuses – as the title suggests – on the health and safety aspects of renting. This guide is aimed at both social and private rented sector tenants and covers “the main hazards which may make a property unsafe to live in” as well as outlining the obligations of both tenant and landlord and the process for raising concerns about any safety aspects of a rental property.

‘How to lease’ targets “anyone already living in a leasehold property or anyone thinking of buying one” and “sets out the difference between leasehold and freehold property and the rights, obligations and implications of being a leaseholder.”

Finally, ‘How to let’ is aimed at current landlords as well as “anyone interested in letting a property in the private rented sector” and outlines the “responsibilities, legal requirements and best practice” for private letting (the Government is explicit that the document does not cover “leasehold, holiday lets or ‘resident landlords’ who let to lodgers”.

The guides are available in PDF format, so are easily viewable online as well as being printable.

Note that landlords are now legally obliged to give tenants a hard copy of ‘How to rent’ when they begin their tenancies.

Karen James, Partner and Head of Residential Property commented: "Here at Ramsdens we help hundreds of people to move home every month and understand how important it is to be done right. Whether our transaction is with the tenant, landlord or leaseholder we want to ensure that they have the right information every step of the way, including a thorough understanding of their rights and responsibilities throughout the contractual agreement."

Whether you are leasing, letting or renting Ramsdens can help. Contact us today by calling 0808 1685 643, fill out an online enquiry form, or email and we will be in touch.