Can a landlord live in their property?
Yes, a live-in landlord is someone who lives in the property they own or lease. This implies that the landlord has greater oversight of tenants or lodgers, allowing them to address questions, repairs and other maintenance matters directly.
A live-out landlord, on the other hand, does not live in the property. Some landlords choose to rent out all or part of the space they own, while still living elsewhere. For these landlords, it can be beneficial to have someone to fully or partly manage the property, such as a letting agent.
What is the difference between a tenant and a lodger?
A tenant is someone who rents a room or entire property from a landlord and signs an agreement that outlines their rights and responsibilities.
A lodger is someone who lives in the same property as the landlord but may not necessarily have a contract or a signed agreement, although having one drawn up is advised. Regardless, the lodger still pays rent to the landlord and may be subject to certain rules set by the landlord. However, they do not have the same rights as tenants when it comes to things like repair requests or eviction notices. To find out more about lodger’s rights, please check citizen’s advice.
Live-in vs live-out landlord responsibilities
When renting out a property, landlords need to understand the difference between these two types of arrangements and the responsibilities associated with each.
Live-in landlord responsibilities
● Room and board maintenance
In the event of any issues with the property, such as plumbing problems, electrical faults or structural concerns, it’s the live-in landlord’s duty to resolve any issues promptly.
● Safety and security
The live-in landlord is responsible for making sure the property’s safety features, such as fire alarms and security systems, are functioning effectively.
While lodgers may be responsible for keeping their room clean and congenial, the landlord is typically responsible for maintaining common areas, ensuring they are clean and well-maintained.
● Legal obligations
Live-in landlords must adhere to local housing laws, ensuring the property meets safety standards and has an EPC rating.
● Rent collection
As the person on-site, it’s the live-in landlord’s job to collect rent from lodgers and make sure payments are on time and correct.
● Conflict resolution
If any disputes arise between lodgers, the landlord will often be the one to mediate and resolve the issue.
Live-out landlord responsibilities
● Property maintenance
Although they don’t live in the property, it’s still the live-out landlord’s responsibility to address and fix issues such as plumbing, electrical or structural problems.
● Safety standards
Live-out landlords also still must make sure the property meets all safety regulations, including functioning fire alarms, emergency exits, and security systems.
● Cleanliness of property
Depending on the agreement, the live-out landlord may be responsible for ensuring the overall cleanliness and maintenance of the property, including common areas.
● Legal responsibilities
Following housing laws is critical, including maintaining the property to an acceptable standard, complying with eviction procedures and ensuring the property is in line with all local and national housing regulations.
● Rent collection
Managing rent collection, even from a distance, is a key responsibility. This can involve setting up direct deposits or working with a property management company like Hunters to ensure timely payments.
● Tenant landlord communication
Live-out landlords need to maintain open lines of communication with their tenants, addressing concerns, resolving disputes and ensuring a positive living environment.
● Property inspections
Routine inspections are necessary to assess the condition of the property, check for any damages and make sure that tenants are sticking to their lease agreements.
● Management of tenancy agreements
This includes ensuring leases are up-to-date, handling renewals or terminations and managing tenant turnover.
If you need help managing your let, use an experienced local letting agent like Hunters to advise you on the latest legislation, collect rent and help to manage tenancy agreements.