Landlords Association Scotland
BLA Scotland – British Landlords Association, a national landlords association also covering Scotland.
Renting property in Scotland
Before you can rent a property in Scotland you have to register with the local council, which covers the area where your let property is situated.
Registering before you rent out a property, in turn, ensures you meet the minimum legal requirements.
Joint owners (anyone else who’s named on the title deeds) need to register too, but they will not be charged.
It is a criminal offence if you rent out your property without registering with a local council. You could be fined up to £50,000.
You can apply for landlord registration online on the Scottish Landlord Register website, or you can contact your local council’s housing department.
Exemptions from registration
There are some situations where you don’t have to register with a council to rent out a property in Scotland. They are:
- Holiday lets
- Houses managed by religious orders
- Houses with a resident landlord
- Houses with agricultural and crofting tenancies
- Letting to family members
- Houses providing care services governed by Care Inspectorate regulation
Scotland HMO license
You need a house in multiple occupancy (HMO) licenses if both of the following apply:
- You want to rent your property out to 3 or more tenants
- None of the tenants is related or part of the same family
If you want to use your home in this way, there are extra criteria you’ll need to meet before the council will agree to register you.
They’ll have to decide:
- If you are ‘fit and proper’ (able) to hold an HMO license
- If the property is managed properly
- If the property meets their required standards
Contact your lender and insurers
Before you register to be a landlord, you should contact your mortgage lender and your insurers and inform them in writing too that you intend to let your property.
The terms of your mortgage or insurance may change if you rent out your home. In some cases, your insurance cover may be void if your insurer has not been informed your property is let to a tenant.
Scotland – Your responsibilities as a landlord
You have the following responsibilities as a landlord.
Although your letting agent may be able to carry out some of these duties on your behalf, you’ll still be legally responsible for them.
Any legal action that happens because these weren’t carried out will be your responsibility, not the letting agent’s.
It’s your responsibility to:
- Register with the local council, which covers the area where your let property is located.
- Give the tenant your name and address
- Register their deposit with an approved tenancy deposit scheme
- Give the tenant a tenancy agreement and the correct information notes for their tenancy
- Have an Energy Performance Certificate for the property
- Respect the tenant’s peace and quiet, and give them the correct amount of notice (24 hours or 48 hours) if you want to enter the property
- Meet gas, electricity and other safety requirements
- Make sure you’ve carried out a Legionella Risk Assessment
- Maintain the property’s structure and exterior (including drains, gutters and external pipes)
- Allow adaptations for disabled people, within reason (your local council might be able to provide some support)
- Make sure the property meets the Repairing Standard and give the tenant information on it (this is contained in the information notes which you legally have to give your tenant)
- Give the tenant written notice if there’s any defect in the property or work that needs to be carried out
- Take action to deal with any antisocial behaviour with your tenants in or around your property
- Follow the right legal procedures if you want your tenant to leave
- Consider whether a house in multiple occupancy (HMO) license is needed