Rent Smart Wales | CPS Homes

Rent Smart Wales - Landlord Registration and Licensing Scheme

Rent Smart Wales

Rent Smarter with CPS Homes

As experts on the newly-introduced Rent Smart Wales landlord registration and licensing scheme, we're here to help landlords comply with the new legislation put on them.

Due to an increasing amount of 'red tape' put in place by the local authority and Welsh Government in recent years, many landlords have taken the decision to instruct an agent to manage their properties on their behalf.

At CPS Homes, we fulfil Rent Smart Wales’ criteria required for an agent licence, meaning we’re permitted to continue acting as a managing agent when others won’t be.

By instructing us to manage your property, we will…

  • Save you the cost of a landlord licence and the hassle of ongoing training.
  • Buffer you from the questions and demands of the local authority and Rent Smart Wales.
  • Address any issues or problems via our designated Maintenance & Inspections Team.
  • Provide you with your own representative within our Lettings and Accounts departments.
  • Offer you continued and considered advice on how best to maximise your rental income.
  • Provide you with peace of mind via our Client Money Protection (CMP) policy, professional indemnity insurance, and redress scheme membership.

What is Rent Smart Wales?

Launched on 23rd November 2015, Rent Smart Wales is the product of the Welsh Government’s bid to "improve the image" of the private rented sector.

It puts a requirement on every landlord of a rented property in Wales to register with the scheme, while those who self-manage must also obtain a licence.

Landlords have 12 months to register with Rent Smart Wales and decide whether to apply for a licence or hand over management of their property to a licensed agent.

The Rent Smart Wales website contains a comprehensive Frequently Asked Questions section, but the scheme can be summarised as follows:

The two main requirements for landlords

  • Registration. As a landlord, you must register with your name, address, date of birth, e-mail address, telephone number and addresses of every property you let out in Wales.
  • A licence. If you carry out any tenant-finding or day-to-day property management-related duties – a full list of which can be found here – you must be licensed. However, if you use a managing agent, then it’s the agent who must be licensed.

How to register

  • Registration can easily be done online for a cost of £33.50, or via a paper application form for £80.50. The cost is per landlord, not per property.

  • If your contact details change, you are required by the local authority to update your record. Likewise, if you sell an existing buy-to-let property or buy a new one, you must make these changes.

  • Registration is valid for 5 years. Upon expiry, a new registration must be made, along with payment of a new fee.

  • The registration process must be completed by the landlord and cannot be done by an agent. This is because the person completing the registration has to verify that the information being registered is true and accurate, and they are personally responsible for the record.

How to obtain a licence (in order to manage properties)

  • Applying for a licence can be done online for a cost of £144, or via a paper application form for £186.
  • Landlords must undertake relevant training before being granted a licence, which is at an additional cost to the licence itself. Rent Smart Wales offer their own training – which is a one-day course at a cost of £100 per person – but alternative training via authorised providers will be available soon. Click here to view the training options available. The training will also be available online in the near future.

If you have already completed Landlord Accreditation Wales training course, there will be a short, free, online top-up training session made available to you.

  • Only one licence is required, regardless of the number of properties you manage.

  • The license holder must be deemed a ‘fit and proper person’ and must comply with a Welsh Minister-approved Code of Practice containing letting and management standards in relation to rented properties.
  • Licenses are valid for 5 years. Upon expiry, a new application must be made, along with payment of a new fee.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

I already have a HMO (House of Multiple Occupation) licence for my rented property. Do I need to register and obtain a licence via Rent Smart Wales as well?

HMO licensing and Rent Smart Wales are two entirely different pieces of legislation, so holding a HMO licence does not alter the requirements put on landlords by Rent Smart Wales.

Rent Smart Wales operates on a per landlord basis, whereas HMO licensing operates on a per property basis.

I’m going to register myself as a landlord online, but I own many different properties in Wales. Can I upload them in bulk, rather than input them individually?

Yes, you can. There will be functionality available for landlords to upload multiple properties in one go.

I have buy-to-let properties inside and outside of Wales. Do I need to declare them all when registering?

No, only the properties in Wales need to be listed.

I use a managing agent who handles everything on my behalf. Can they register me as a landlord?

No, unfortunately not. Only the landlord can complete the registration because they have to verify that the information being registered is true and accurate.

What will the fees paid by landlords and agents be used for?

Rent Smart Wales states that the fees are not collected to make a profit. Instead, they will be put towards the running costs of the scheme, which includes ensuring landlords who try to ignore their legal obligations are pursued and punished accordingly. The scheme will also investigate complaints made by tenants.

I jointly own a rental property with someone else, and we manage it between us. Do we both need to register and obtain a licence?

Yes. One of you can register as the "lead" landlord and list both persons' details on the registration, but bear in mind that you will need a landlord licence each as you both do property management activities.

I own some properties individually and some jointly. Who needs to register, and who needs to obtain a licence?

You will need to complete one registration for the properties you own solely, and a separate registration for the ones owned jointly (either owner can complete this). Only the individuals who complete letting or management activity will need to apply for a licence.

History of Rent Smart Wales

07 December 2015


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