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RICS

The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors. With around 100,000 qualified members and over 50,000 students and trainees in some 140 countries, RICS provides the world’s leading professional qualification in land, property, construction and the associated environmental issues. An independent, not-for-profit organisation, RICS acts in the public interest: setting and regulating the highest standards of competence and integrity among their members; and provides impartial, authoritative advice on key issues for business, society and governments worldwide. Find out more by visiting their website www.rics.org/

Restrictive Covenants

A Restrictive Covenant is a legally enforceable deed, usually created to protect specified rights concerning the use of a property or land. A restrictive covenant need not be new; it may have been drafted hundreds of years ago, specifying that a given plot of land cannot be used for development or certain purposes. Common examples of Restrictive Covenants, a) Not to erect any building or structures on the land that has been acquired, b) Not to use the land for any business activity, c) Not to use the land other than for agricultural use and not to carry out any building or residential development. A Restrictive Covenant insurance policy (also known as Restrictive Covenant Indemnity insurance or Restrictive Covenant Contingency insurance) provides for any loss in the value of the property and the legal expenses incurred in defending an attempt to enforce the covenant, subject to the selected limit of indemnity. Unlike most insurance policies, a restrictive covenant insurance policy lasts in perpetuity and as such can be usually be passed on to future owners of the property. For specialist advice we suggest that you look at such sites as www.stride.co.uk/

Rent Guarantee Insurance

Extension of Cover – Normally arranged in conjunction with Legal Expenses Cover. It should be clearly understood that insurers have several stringent and onerous conditions attached to the granting of this cover, that must be strictly adhered to by the Landlord before a tenancy is granted and signed, if a successful claim for non-payment of rent is to be made. The cost of the cover is based on the monthly rent being charged and can be quite expensive when viewed in relation to the cost of buildings and contents cover. Most insurers will only insure up to a maximum of £2.000 per month. You should carefully read any Key Feature document supplied by an Insurer so that you are fully aware of their particular terms and conditions.

References

Any Landlord should consider obtaining written references for any possible tenant. These are a requirement if you are also seeking Rent Guarantee Insurance. References are always obtained by most, if not all, Letting Agents as part of their standard business practice, which might also include credit searches.

Rebuilding Costs

CHECKING YOUR SUM INSURED.

The ABI (Association of British Insurers) in conjunction with BCIS, the RICS Building Cost Information Service provide an online facility for checking building sums insured. Most domestic house insurance policies require that the sum insured is the full rebuilding cost of the property. It is the responsibility of the insured to get this figure right. BCIS has been commissioned by the Association of British Insurers to provide guidance figures for the rebuilding cost of a home to allow householders to check their sums insured. Their calculator gives a general indication of rebuilding costs for many common properties within the UK, but it should be noted that it is not appropriate for all houses and the rebuilding cost of even similar houses can vary depending on individual circumstances. Find out more by visiting their website www.bcis.co.uk/

Radon

A tasteless and odourless but deadly naturally occurring radioactive gas. Find out more at www.hpa.org.uk/. The gas is the second biggest cause of lung cancer in the UK after smoking. It comes from the decay of uranium and radium found naturally in rocks and soil. It affects both new as well as old houses. The levels of Radon gas varies considerably from area to area. Radon is now a mandatory question on all conveyancing. If a problem is found in a property it can usually be sorted for around £1,000 by specialist measures, such as improving ventilation under floors. Radon reports can be ordered on line at www.landsearch.net/localauthority.asp.

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