Offering Peace of Mind for Landlords
If you are looking for help to keep you and your property legal and compliant, obtain a high net rental, maintain your property to a good standard and increase the long-term value of your investment, giving you peace of mind then SouthSide is for you.
SouthSide does not charge a set-up cost or pass on marketing costs for our long-term landlords that are looking for management of at least 3 years. We advertise on your behalf on ALL major letting portals to achieve maximum exposure at no extra cost.
If your property is currently managed with another agent and you are not happy with the service, we can liaise directly with your current agent to take over the management of your rented property or portfolio and we also offer a reduced management fee of 6%+VAT (7.2% incl VAT) if you have a tenant in situ.
The only charge SouthSide make to landlords is the monthly management fee which is 9% + VAT (10.8% incl VAT) of the monthly rent.
How it works
Southside have an ethos of “Property Made Simple” to make the letting and management of your rental property as straight forward and stress free as possible. We are happy to arrange a free, no obligation appraisal where we will meet you at your property to go through, in detail, what is required to make your property compliant for renting out. We will also give you recommendations on any works required to achieve the best return on your investment. To arrange this you can complete this link to book an appraisal. Or to discuss further first, you can submit an enquiry here or call our office on 0131 510 0051.
The cost of letting your property is absorbed by us on the basis that you are looking for Full Management for at least 3 years, this cost covers everything from the professional photos, uploading the advert to around 20 main stream sites which, are highlighted below and also feed out to other sites, To Let Board, enquiry management, viewings, Application process for vetting potential tenants, referencing and credit checks and signing the legal documents on your behalf. Due to the increase in legislation which has resulted in a lot more work involved in letting and managing a property, should you decide to take your property back within the first 3 years we would need to recharge a proportion of the letting costs. We do have an alternative to this were we can offer our Let Only Service which you can read about below and we can then manage the property once tenants have been secured at the 6%+VAT rate.
- SouthSide do not charge any hidden fees to landlords for marketing; producing and signing legal documents; organising maintenance; Routine Property Visits (RPV’s) or any renewal fees.
- We offer you reduced managements fee depending on the length of tenancy, e.g. after 3 years of the same tenants your management fee is reduced to 8% + VAT, after 6 years, 7% + VAT and 9 years 6% + VAT. To request this, please contact your Property Manager.
- We do not charge your tenants any fees either, for example referencing and tenancy fees, tenants simply pay their first month’s rent and deposit (which we transfer to Letting Protection Scotland for retention and return at the time they move out).
- We will always do what we can to match the right tenants to the right properties and therefore we do not work on a first come first served basis, we consider multiple applications, summarise each application with you and you will then have the opportunity to make the final decision.
- We conduct Routine Property Visits 1 month after your tenants move in and 3-6 months RPVs thereafter, to ensure that the property is being kept in a good condition. A detailed photographic report will be completed at the visit and this will be forwarded to you for your records.
- Being Landlords ourselves and having used other letting agents before, we know how frustrating and costly it can be to carry out repairs and maintenance. To assist with this we have excellent local trades-people at negotiated prices and we do not add any fees either within or to the total of any invoices. For example we have negotiated a rate of £39 incl. VAT with various gas engineers for the annual landlord Gas safety certificates, ensuring landlords make a saving while maintaining the highest of safety standards. Many of our competitors take a percentage of the invoice back from contractors which results in much higher costs for landlords which we simply feel is not ethical.
- Landlords will be notified if repairs or maintenance need to be arranged and any associated costs will be detailed on the monthly rental statement along with invoices. The costs of works will then be deducted from the rental payment before being transferred. Deductions for any higher costs can be split to make the payments more manageable if required.
- If we take on an HMO property then we will manage the renew at no additional cost as we include this in our management fee for long term landlords.
Below is a list of our negotiated service rates with partner companies. We can also organise for works to be carried out by your own contractors if you prefer..
Summary of Maintenance Services 2019
Over the years we have developed a very effective and efficient letting and property management service and are pleased to continue to build long term relationships with landlords
Should you decide to work with us, all we require are two simple forms to be returned by you: a Legal Requirement Form and a Landlord Preference Form both of which are provided during the property appraisal or by email on request. As soon as we receive those we can begin to advertise your property. We typically take photos on a Wednesday so that the property can be advertised on all the major letting web portals on a Friday to catch the weekend traffic.
Should your property already have tenants in place with another company or you’re managing it yourself, we can take over the full management at a reduced rate of 6%+VAT (7.2% incl VAT) of the monthly rent for the duration of that tenancy, it would then revert to our standard fee when we are required to re-let the property.
Our Let Only service is designed for landlords who are looking to manage their property themselves but require initial assistance to find the right tenant.
We offer 4 levels to our Let Only service, all of which require an initial fixed charge of £198 inc VAT for advertising the property on all the major letting portals including:
City Lets, RightMove, Letting Web, Zoopla, s1Homes, Gumtree, Find A Property, Nestoria, Prime Location and SouthSide Management.
This costs also includes a ‘To Let’ board outside the property if required. If you do not have marketing pictures/description of the property please add £36 incVAT for this, which is payable upon instruction to market your property.
The level of involvement is then up to you:
Level 1 (Bronze) 15%+VAT (18%incl VAT) of the achieved normal monthly rental – 1st month only
Includes: Marketing, Creation of Advert and Enquiry Management
Level 2 (Silver) 25%+VAT (30% incl VAT) of the achieved normal monthly rental – 1st month only
Includes: Marketing, Creation of Advert, Enquiry Management, Reference Checks/Credit Checks
Level 3 (Gold) 35%+VAT (42% incl VAT) of the achieved normal monthly rental – 1st month only
Includes: Marketing, Creation of Advert, Enquiry Management, Viewings and Reference Checks/Credit Checks
Level 4 (Platinum) 45%+VAT (54% incl VAT) of the achieved normal monthly rental – 1st month only
Includes: Marketing, Creation of Advert, Enquiry Management, Viewings, Reference Checks/Credit Checks and Preparation and Signing of Lease/Legal Documentation
If you have your own tenant and don’t require any Advertising, Marketing, Enquiry Management or Viewings we would not charge the fixed advertising charge and the fee for Reference/Credit checks or Lease Signing would be 15%+VAT (18% incl.VAT) for one service and 25%+VAT (30% incl VAT) for both services.
Please note that in order to advertise a property we require, by law, the Landlord Registration Number and EPC (Energy Performance Certificate)
Inspection Only Service
Occasionally landlords require, as part of their insurance, a property check or inspection to be carried out if their property is vacant for a period of time. We offer an inspection service inclusive of photos and a detailed report at a cost of £27 incl VAT per visit if the property is in Edinburgh.
Short term lets, many of which are marketed on Airbnb as rooms in residential homes and entire properties, are not affected by the legislation that surrounds long-term rentals in Edinburgh.
Although SouthSide is predominantly a long-term rental company, we can provide a short-term let service to our landlords if it is deemed to be beneficial, for example, during the Edinburgh Festival, if tenants give notice to leave just prior to August, between tenancies or where landlords are awaiting an HMO licence to be granted.
Short-lets can be very lucrative however the costs can also be much higher in terms of cleaning and turnaround and therefore profit is very much dependent on the occupancy rate and location is a huge factor. Not all properties are suitable for short-term lets and if the intention to let a property on a short-let basis is for an extended period of time, planning permission may also need to be sought.
Below is some information relating to short lets in Edinburgh that may be useful when considering renting your property on a short-term basis along with some articles.
Pro’s and Con’s of Shortlets
- The gross rental can be higher
- Properties are regularly cleaned and maintained
- The flexibility for landlords to use the property themselves
- Fewer legal requirements as currently no significant regulation
- Can offer a good temporary solution between tenancies
- Cost of cleaning, turnaround and supplies are high
- Bills and utilities covered by the landlord
- Issues with neighbours due to large groups
- Damage due to it being a temporary place to stay and not a home
- Issues that arise must be dealt with immediately as if an emergency – no reasonable lead time for contractors etc.
- Occupancy rate must be high to get a good return
- Higher wear and tear
Short Let Articles
We believe that investment is very much for the long term and next to your own home, one of the biggest investments you are likely to make. The main reasons property owners fail to gain sufficient monthly cash flow from their investment property to cover taxation and mortgage costs is because they overpay for properties and do not maximise potential. This is particularly true for refurbishment projects. With our expertise, we can help to find the right property for you and advise on the best ways to maximise layout and return on investment.
We understand that property investment can be both time consuming and stressful without the right skills, knowledge and experience. We systemise this process for you using our experience to minimise these risks to help you make the best decision in line with your investment goals. If you are looking to buy investment property to get good yields or for capital appreciation, we can assist you in your search and acquisition of these properties in a transparent and effective way.
Pre-Purchase / Rental Survey
- For landlords that are looking to purchase a buy-to-let property, we offer a Pre-Purchase Survey for a fixed cost of £80+VAT (£96 incl VAT) to advise landlords on the viability of the investment. The cost is just to cover the time involved however, should we subsequently manage the property thereafter, the cost of the survey will be refunded with the first monthly rental statement (as detailed below).
The full survey includes:
Site visit to the property
Detailed description of property (including access and points to note)
Legal obligations to put in place for letting
- For landlords that are just looking for advice on the market rent of the property we can offer you a Basic Desktop Appraisal for a fixed cost of £40+VAT (£48 incl VAT).
Following a purchase and if required by you, we offer a full or let only management service as detailed above. Please note that we will refund the cost of the Pre-Purchase Rental Survey for owners looking to let their property with SouthSide on a full management basis for the long term (3 years or more) which would be refunded with their first monthly rental payment and included on their monthly rental statement.
To arrange an appraisal, simply fill out this Pre-Purchase Property Appraisal Form. Further information can be found on this form, with options for payment.
Upon successful search and acquisition and appraisal of an investment property, for new clients, SouthSide charge a simple 1.2% + VAT acquisition fee of the purchase price for search, negotiation, acquisition and professional advice. For existing clients, this is reduced to 0.9% + VAT. Should you find a property yourself and we advise during the process and provide basic appraisal costs, we only charge 0.3% + VAT of the purchase price.
Finding the right property to get the best return on investment can require patience however once the right property comes along it really is a great way to invest.
As SouthSide are ARLA Propertymark registered agents, we are approved for providing a mortgage consent letter for your property. The cost for a desktop appraisal, which will enable us to complete the letter, is £48 including VAT.
Alternatively, if you prefer to have a site visit (formal appraisal), the cost is £96 including VAT. Please note, should you bring the property on for long-term full management with ourselves within 12 months of us creating the letter, the cost will be refunded to you with your first months rent.
We will issue a report, along with a mortgage rental valuation letter for either options along with any recommended items.
To request a Mortgage Consent Letter, please complete this form, which can be done online.
What is an HMO?
A House in Multiple Occupation (HMO) is an entire property rented by at least 3 unrelated tenants (who are not from 1 household, e.g. a family or a couple), with shared kitchen, bathroom or toilet facilities.
How can SouthSide can help to manage a HMO?
Keeping our tenants safe and landlords compliant are among our main priorities at SouthSide and we have an experienced Property Management Team who specialise in managing HMO properties for landlords. For long term landlords we include HMO management and the renewal service as part of our standard management fee and we would only charge for managing an HMO if a licence was not yet in place and a brand new application was required – any future renewals however would be included as part of our service.
What are the benefits and drawbacks of owning an HMO property?
Owning a well-maintained HMO property can have huge advantages for landlords in terms of rental income and tenants are rarely in short supply however, applying for an HMO licence can be a lengthy and complicated task and general wear and tear can be higher.
What’s Involved in applying for an HMO?
Due to the time and level of regulation involved, many landlords choose to use a management company to take care of their HMO property. There are several steps to go through before a licence can be granted to ensure that a property meets the required standards.
To assist landlords with the rules and regulations Edinburgh Council have put together an HMO Application Flowchart to cover the process step by step.
How long does a licence last for?
An HMO licence is granted initially for 1 year and then providing there are no issues and the property has been managed well, a licence is typically granted 3 yearly thereafter.
What are the penalties for not complying with HMO regulations?
Failure to meet any of the conditions of an HMO licence once it has been granted could result in the licence being revoked or a fine of up to £10,000 and if a landlord lets out an unlicensed HMO property, the fines can be even higher, up to £50,000.
SouthSide is a team of hardworking, driven and fully committed individuals. We respond quickly and work with our landlords and tenants. We are proud to be one of the leading agents in Edinburgh which is reflected in the reviews we receive on
The people we serve, lead busy lives and so with this in mind, we are continuously adopting new ways to improve our service and make things easier for landlords and tenants with extended office opening hours, including Saturdays and Bank Holidays, a 24-hour on call Property Manager, flexible viewing times and more online systems which, our team goes the extra mile to provide. In the past 2 years we have introduced new online systems to make it easier to book viewings, apply for properties and report issues and maintenance out of hours. Having outgrown our previous system, we have also invested in a purpose build database to streamline our operations and procedures which allows us more time to focus on the things that matter the most, our clients.
We also understand that times are tight and therefore, do what we can to make the services we provide affordable and inclusive.
Landlords often contact us when they are not happy with their current agent and they are looking for a reliable and transparent company to take over the management of their tenanted property or portfolio. We are always happy to work with and build long term relationships with good landlords that need our help to get things back on track and provide a great service.