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Local buy to let landlords have been given a warning by Peterborough lawyers Roythornes after official statistics issued by the Ministry of Justice showed possession claims by landlords reaching record levels.
Commenting on the statistics, which showed that there were over 47,000 possession claims made by landlords in the first quarter of the year, Claire Trolove, solicitor in Roythornes property litigation team said:
“Many people are considering buy to let as a form of investment, but often they are unaware of the dangers and the safety nets that can be put in place to protect their rental income. With many landlords repossessing properties because of rent arrears and the first quarter of 2014 showing a record level of claims of this nature, this is a very real problem.”
Claire went on to say that landlords can ask tenants for a rent guarantor which is someone who says they will pay the rent if the tenant cannot – a parent or relative for example. Having a guarantor would add a layer of protection to the landlords should the tenant not pay.
“When a tenant does not pay it’s possible to get a judgment against them for the money, but that’s of little use if the tenant does not have the money to pay. Having a guarantor means that in this case the landlord has another party they can pursue to recover the money they are owed.”
Claire advised all those looking to enter the buy to let market, or already with a property portfolio to take legal advice:
“There are a number of ways in which landlords can protect themselves, but without taking advice many remain unaware of them only to suffer when things go wrong. A little advice at the outset can save both time and money in the long run.”