A private landlord owns one or more properties that they rent out to tenants, usually on a six-month shorthold agreement. Their rental property may be fully furnished or unfurnished and the rent is set accordingly, and the best place to find such properties for rent is in a local newspaper or on this site.
Whereas a letting agent would find a suitable tenant, take care of the paperwork, deal with problems and collect rent on behalf of a landlord, a private landlord chooses to take sole responsibility for these things.
Before signing a contract with a private landlord it’s worth asking if they are members of any private landlord related trade bodies. If they are it’ll prove they are genuine and generally professional landlords, although not all good private landlords are members of trade bodies.
It is also worth asking a potential private landlord for a reference from a past tenant; after all they are likely to ask you for two or three. Getting the opinion of people who have rented from the landlord before is a good way to make sure they have the characteristics you’re looking for in a private landlord.
If you decide to rent a house through a private landlord then it’s important to shop around for the best deal. Do your research by viewing a number of properties owned by different private landlords, and if the one you really like is missing a few extras that another one has, mention it to the landlord, they may be willing to supply those extras to win your tenancy.
You should also be aware that private landlords must give 24 hours notice before entering your home to do repairs, show prospective new tenants round, etc. Private landlords must also fix and repair problems such as a broken boiler or leaking roof, if it has been caused by general wear and tear.
So, if you want to rent from a private landlord, check out our listings page or your local newspaper, and start looking for your new home today.