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Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Fergus Wilson sells off his final 300 homes

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Trimming a tree could cost you £40,000

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Overview of the Tenant Fees Act

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More Welsh landlords refused licences

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Air quality tests rental properties


Landlords across the UK can now have their properties’ indoor air quality tested, as EnviroVent, one of the UK’s leading ventilation manufacturers, has partnered with social enterprise Airtopia to offer quick and easy Home Health checks.

Sources of indoor air pollution are all around us, but invisible. The unique Airtopia test will, for the first time, give landlords a detailed report and recommendations that relate to their own property.

Many people do not realise that poor indoor air quality may be the reason for a variety of health problems, ranging from respiratory conditions, such as asthma, sore throats, bronchitis, skin rashes and irritation, allergies, red eyes, headaches, running nose and nasal congestion. Long-term exposure to toxins in the home has even been linked to diabetes, dementia, tachycardia and an increased risk of cancers.

The Airtopia Home Health Check, available through EnviroVent, is an in-depth Indoor Air Quality assessment and questionnaire that can determine for sure whether a home has a problem. It only takes 90 minutes for an EnviroVent specialist to carry out the test. The results are then analysed in detail in the Airtopia laboratory.

The analyst will test for:
  • Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) – the test reveals the overall levels of airborne chemicals, breaking them down into 16 individual contaminants with results and recommendations for each of them.
  • Temperature, Moisture & Humidity – it tests the amount of water vapour in the air, which contributes to condensation, alongside levels of thermal comfort around the home.
  • Carbon Dioxide – a gas naturally found in the atmosphere but is undesirable at higher levels.
  • Formaldehyde – a colourless pungent gas used in building materials and many household products.
  • Microbial Volatile Organic Compounds – which actively grow mould.
The landlord then receives a bespoke report on the air quality in their home, alongside advice, support and details of recommended solutions. Making use of the various remedial advice given, the property owner can improve their home’s indoor air quality and potentially their family’s health too.

Rebecca McLean, Marketing and Product Director, at EnviroVent, said: “The Home Health checks are an ideal tool for landlords to demonstrate any indoor air quality issues in their properties. Having an indoor air quality test means that you are made fully aware of any contaminants, toxins and excess moisture and then can deal with them in an appropriate manner. The best way to improve or maintain good indoor air quality is to have a reliable ventilation system in the home.”
For private and social landlords, EnviroVent has its own specialist team who will survey, recommend and then install the product into an existing or new property.

EnviroVent offers a range of extract fans, Positive Input Ventilation (PIV), Mechanical Extract Ventilation (MEV), and Mechanical Ventilation with Heat Recovery (MVHR) solutions for the new build and refurbishment sectors. Its award-winning products are UK manufactured and can be installed by EnviroVent’s own dedicated team of nationwide installation engineers, who also provide after-sales support.

EnviroVent & Airtopia’s Home Health Check, including detailed laboratory tests and a bespoke report, costs £299. To book a Home Health Check call 0345 2727807 or visit

For more details about Airtopia and indoor air quality, please visit
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Landlords count the cost of tax measures

  • 58% of landlords report an increase in their 2017-18 tax bill
  • Tax increase of £3,039 on average
  • One third of landlords point to higher than expected rise
Nearly six out of ten landlords (58%) saw an increase in their 2017-18 tax bill according to Paragon’s PRS Trends Report for Q1 2019 which tracks the opinion and experience of over 200 landlords across the UK.

Landlords with three or more properties were more likely to report an increase in their 2017-18 tax bill than those with smaller portfolios, with an average annual increase in tax of £3,039 for those reporting a rise.

While over 60% of landlords confirmed that the change in their 2017-18 tax bill was as expected, one third (33%) said it was either a little or a lot more than expected.

Almost half of landlords (49%) who reported a higher than expected increase said they would make changes to their portfolio as a result, with the most popular measures including selling property (24%), increasing rent (20%) and reducing borrowing (19%).

Mortgage interest tax relief for buy-to-let landlords is being phased out over a four-year period and replaced with a basic rate tax credit. In the 2017-18 tax year, landlords could deduct 75% of mortgage interest costs from rent. This was reduced to 50% in 2018-19. It will fall to 25% in 2019-20 and then to zero.

John Heron, Director of Mortgages at Paragon said: “These figures provide early insight into how the tax changes impacted landlords in the first year of implementation. The January tax deadline was the first real data point for measuring change and it’s clear that landlords are continuing to adapt their approach as the transition progresses.

“The fact that almost one quarter of landlords intend to respond by selling property is bad news for tenants, impacting supply to the sector, driving rental inflation and ultimately making it more difficult for those that rely on the UK’s Private Rented Sector for a home.”

View the full PRS Trends Q1 report.
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