Landlord responsibilites in Scotland
Looking for advice on your responsibilities as a landlord? We’ve compiled a handy landlord checklist including information on legislation, property tax payable on your buy-to-let purchase and property maintenance. If you need more information, ESPC Lettings is an expert letting agent based in Edinburgh and we provide free advice for private landlords so don’t hesitate to get in touch.
get in touch with espc lettings today
Get in touch with ESPC Lettings
How ESPC Lettings can help
Our dedicated team of staff are committed to delivering excellent customer service and trained to be able to offer free advice for private landlords on all aspects of the letting industry.
With our in-depth industry knowledge and access to extensive property market data from ESPC, we will work to get the maximum return on investment for landlords. We provide a full range of letting services and don’t charge upfront costs.
Our small team of letting experts pride themselves on first class customer service, making us one of the best letting agents in Edinburgh. But don’t just take our word for it – check our reviews from our landlords to see for yourself.
We provide everything from free advice for landlords to a fully managed property service, and everything in between! Get in touch today to find out how we can help with your rental properties.
get in touch with espc lettings today
Landlord checklist - legal responsibilities
Unsure of your legal obligations as a landlord? Here are the main things to be aware of.
1. Landlord registration
If you’re wondering whether you need to register as a landlord in Scotland, the answer is yes. All owners of a rental property need to register as private landlords. This can be done online.
2. Tenancy deposit scheme
All deposits paid by tenants must be placed in one of three Scottish Tenancy Deposit Schemes (TDS): Safe Deposit Scotland, My Deposits Scotland or Letting Protection Service.
ESPC Lettings use Safe Deposit Scotland, and we will ensure your tenants deposit is correctly lodged in the Tenant Deposit Scheme.
3. Gas and electrical safety certificates
All rental properties must have the following checks carried out to ensure they are safe for tenants:
- Gas Certificate - all gas appliances must be checked on an annual basis and a certificate must be in place to show all appliances are safe for use
- Portable Appliance Test (PAT) - all electrical appliances that are portable (e.g. toaster, washing machine) must be checked annually and a certificate provided to show that they too are safe for use
- Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR) - wiring and sockets must be checked on a regular basis and we recommend to our Landlords that this is carried out every three years.
4. Smoke alarms
In order to comply with the repairing standard the following should be adhered to:
- One functioning smoke alarm in the room which is frequently used by the occupants for general daytime living purposes (normally the living room/lounge)
- One heat alarm in every kitchen
- All alarms should be ceiling mounted
- One functioning smoke alarm in every circulation space on each storey, such as hallways and landings, or in main room if no landing in the upper storey
- All alarms should be interlinked
- Mains-operated alarms (with battery backup) are permitted, and tamper proof/sealed/long-life lithium battery alarms (i.e. not PP3 type or user-replaceable) are also permitted – the expiry date should be visible on each alarm
- Alarms can be interlinked via wires (hardwired) or wirelessly (by radio communication).
5. Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)
All properties must have an EPC before the property can be advertised. If you have a Home Report you will find a copy of the EPC within this report. An EPC is valid for 10 years.
6. Legionella risk assessment
It a legal requirement to have a risk assessment for legionella carried out in all rented properties. The risk assessment should identify any areas where legionella bacteria could grow and if treatment is required. To stay compliant, landlords should employ a “competent” person to conduct the risk assessment who can make recommendations if a risk is identified.
As the owner of the property you are responsible for insuring the building. You may choose to arrange insurance for any contents you may have in the property, anything belonging to your tenant is their responsibility to insure.
As an expert letting agent in Edinburgh, ESPC Lettings can help you meet your legal obligations as a landlord and provide advice when needed. Get in touch to find out how we can help.
Landlord checklist – property tax information
As a landlord, the issue of tax can be an overwhelming one. Here we break it down into sections, so you understand the tax you are required to pay on your properties. You can also read our page on landlord tax requirements.
Land and Buildings Transaction Tax (LBTT)
Land and Buildings Transaction Tax (LBTT) applies to property transactions in Scotland.
It is usually the solicitor who is acting on the buyer’s behalf who will complete the return and facilitate the payment. The amount of LBTT payable depends on the price of the property that has been purchased.
Use ESPC’s LBTT calculator to find out how much tax is likely to be paid on a property.
Additional Dwelling Supplement Tax (ADS)
The Additional Dwelling Supplement (ADS) is a tax on the purchase of an additional residential properties (such as buy-to-let and second homes) of £40,000 or more. The current rate is charged at 6% of the total purchase price.
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Income tax for landlords
If you’re a landlord, you’ll need to pay tax on your rental income. We spoke to tax specialists for their tips on completing a self-assessment form as a landlord.
Landlord checklist – property maintenance
If you are renting out a property or numerous properties, they will require maintenance from time to time. If you have questions such as “How often should a landlord refurbish a property?” or “What is considered maintenance on rental property?”, ESPC Lettings can help.
The team has plenty of experience in taking care of rental properties and offers a fully managed property service, so you don’t have to worry about dealing with maintenance issues yourself. We will keep you updated as to maintenance costs and what needs done in your property, so you are kept informed at all stages.
Get in touch with ESPC Lettings to get advice about property maintenance and find out more about our full property management service.
ESPC Lettings can provide expert advice on all aspects of being a landlord – contact the team today using the form below, emailing email@example.com or calling 0131 253 2847.
You can also drop in to the ESPC Property Information Centre to chat to one of the team. View the timetable of when we provide free buy-to-let advice.
Landlord tips and insights
Tenancy agreement: what you need to know
When renting a property, tenancy agreement is a crucial part in the process. Find out more about your rights and obligations as a tenant.
Decorating a rental house or flat: top tips for landlords
Decorating a rental property can be quite different from decorating your own home. Nicky Lloyd at ESPC Lettings provides top tips for landlords on how to decorate a rental house or flat.
Tax charges on second properties
Owning a second property as a holiday home or as a landlord has long been attractive to investors. However, you need to be clear on the tax charges you could face on purchasing a second property. Claire Maxwell, Tax Senior Manager at Johnston Carmichael, takes a look at LBTT and the recently increased Additional Dwelling Supplement.
Scottish Letting Agent Register
ESPC (UK) Ltd - LARN1904080
ESPC Lettings are accredited with Landlord Accreditation Scotland.