Rent Smart Wales and the New Obligations for Landlords
Posted on 01 Feb 2016
A new legal requirement for all landlords operating in Wales was introduced on 23rd November 2015. Landlords are now required to register themselves and their rental properties.
If you own a property in Wales that you do not live in, and you allow someone else to live in that property (for which you receive payment of money in return), then the requirement to register as a landlord will almost certainly apply to you.
Who must register? You will need to register if you are an individual landlord or a company landlord. If you own property together with someone else, then one of you must register the property on behalf of the other owners.
As part of the registration process, a landlord must provide correspondence information, as well as the address of all rental property. There is a registration fee to pay and a landlord must update the information on the register.
In addition, any person who is responsible for letting or managing the property must be licensed. If you are a landlord and you do not employ a licensed agent to let and manage the property, you must apply for a license yourself. If an agent does the letting and managing work, then only the agent needs to be licensed.
The new legislation requires all licensed persons to undertake approved training, which can be organised via Rent Smart Wales or via an alternative authorised provider.
The aim of the legislation is to improve management standards in the private rented sector, raise tenant confidence in landlords and raise awareness of landlords, agents and tenants’ rights and responsibilities.
From the 23rd November 2015, there is a 12 month period during which the focus is on raising awareness of the new requirements and ensuring compliance with the new registration and licensing requirements.
If you are a landlord or a letting or managing agent, you must ensure that you fully comply with these new requirements before the end of the initiation period as the local authority and the licensing authority can take enforcement action against you.
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