Who are the NLCE?

Sep 19th, 2016

Who are the NLCE?

The National Landlord Code of Excellence Limited was formed in 2016 to assist landlords and tenants in working together to overcome the impasse that can be created in the Private Housing Sector, due to everyday problems that can arise between a landlord & a tenant. We are a forward thinking community, developing proactive tools alongside North Somerset Council to create a resolve to these everyday dilemmas.

Through education and arbitration NLCE UK is assisting local authorities to bring about a better housing standard and rental community, without the need for them to bear down on our communities & wrap us all in unnecessary red tape; e.g.
Selective and additional licensing.
Related news topic: 24housing ⇄ Landlords stop selective licensing scheme (click to read on)

As a community of ‘hands-on’ landlords we know that any individual council with limited officers, limited resources and limited experience on the PRS front line leads them to believe that the only option is “Selective and/or additional licensing”.  In reality this does not work, it simply increases the anxiousness between landlords and their tenants which creates a bigger divide and leaves the landlord with no option but to raise their rent(s); in an already stretched market. The NLCE firmly believes that the PRS industry needs education and self-regulating, and does not benefit from ‘big stick’ discipline policies currently being issued by many local authorities across the country.

So what do we want to achieve?

The NLCE wants to achieve a level playing field for good landlords and good tenants.  It has been created to educate and help those are deemed “bad” simply because they do not understand their AST contractual obligations or their statutory duties. The NLCE is as intolerant of rogue landlords as we are anti-social behaviour from tenants and will work together to eradicate these from all of our neighbourhoods.

How can we help tenants?

The NLCE can help tenants through education; in order to understand that their tenancy is their home and not a hotel. Furthermore, if the tenant conducts themselves correctly throughout the tenancy they will create a better tenant history, which will enable them to secure better accommodation in the future.

The NLCE is the only accreditation company in the UK that has the ability to use the shared data of thousands of landlords who have registered their tenants onto a national database. Even tenants who have unfortunately fallen on harder times and created a bad credit score can be seen to be good tenants, and tenants who rely on benefits to assist them can show a solid and good history of tenure too. Landlords will always look to take a tenant with a good history of tenure, over one that simply has a good credit score because they paid their bank on time. In simple terms, landlords want to know about continuous rent payments and good conduct and not whether a tenant has paid their overdraft on time.

The NLCE also offers tenants a free Property Maintenance and Repair Report Facility, where tenants can automatically register their property issue(s) (free of charge) via a simple email to their landlord. (Please click here for full info on this)

As the NLCE grows it will offer more and more educational help to tenants about issues, such as how to deal with general maintenance issues in their property. It is the NLCE’s misson to help tenants understand why (for example) their central heating may not be coming on or why they may have damp issues created by condensation from drying clothes over a radiator, etc, etc. The NLCE believe that better understanding of these issue will lead to a better relationship between landlords and their tenants from the outset.

The NLCE also offers tenants a better chance for a better home in the future because, alongside good tenant histories (mentioned above), it can also provide a benefit assisted rent guarantee and legal expenses insurance backed security to the private rented sector landlords by way of the Ark Project.

The Ark Project delivers sustainable tenancies to benefit assisted tenants by offering a bank account for people on either no or low pay. It gives tenants mobility via the ARK Passport and this Passport gives landlords the confidence to accept pre-qualified customers on benefits into their properties.

For social and private rented housing providers it guarantees their rent, pays for any legal costs in light of Universal Credit (UC) and helps to assist councils in reducing the amount of support needed for growing homelessness to the Private Rented Sector (PRS).  For councils and communities it creates an additional, immediate supply of affordable rented properties and allows good tenants (who are supported by benefits) to be integrated securely into communities.

How can we help landlords?

Landlords are really on the front line and under fire from all angles in the current climate. With more and more legislation to protect tenants, stealth taxes to boost government coffers and local licensing schemes against all landlords to pay for the shortfalls in council funding to tackle rogue landlords, landlords are feeling the pinch all around. This means that most are needing to increase their rents to their tenants to cover these additional costs.
In light of this, Landlords/Agents who are already accredited on a residential course can passport straight into the NLCE scheme. To do this we would need details of their accreditation (date and certificate) and then they would commit to the NLCE code of conduct and follow the Continual Professional Development (CPD) points ongoing over their 5 year membership. Please contact the NLCE for more info.

Anti-social behaviour.

The NLCE understand that tenants need to be protected from bad, unprincipled landlords. However we also know that legislation brought out to protect decent and moral tenants is being used by some tenants to cheat, deceive and lawfully steal from their landlords. The NLCE is the only outside company that allows free data sharing to its members to assist landlords by not taking other accredited members’ problem tenants.  Today, the databases for tenant histories (both positive and negative) cover circa 500,000 records. This makes us the only company that has its accreditation’s deal with anti-social behaviour on a proactive level. The NLCE understands that if disruptive and uncommunicative tenants cannot set down roots in our communities, they cannot grow and flourish. After all, better neighbourhoods lead to better tenancies, better investments and stronger, functional and thriving communities.

Migration and the Right to Rent.

The NLCE is the only organisation where it’s accredited members can use a free Government approved format to enable them to check that their applicant tenant has the ‘Right to Rent’ in the UK. The process gives the landlord a record of the questions they need to comply with, to offer a tenant accommodation in line with the right to rent legislation and these are stored securely online to refer to at any point in the future. As currently stipulated in the ‘Right to Rent’ guidelines, this will present members with an unlimited time frame or one year statutory excuses.

Document Management & Statutory Certification.

The NLCE understands that one of the most important issues for a landlord, and part of a successful accreditation, is for a landlord to understand their statutory requirements in document management. It is imperative that a landlord delivers to the tenant the necessary documentation on time and within the process of compliance to stay within the law.

Items such as EPC’s, tenancy deposit registration, and gas safe certificates must be served in a particular manner and then, where necessary, renewed on an annual basis. This management from the outset of a tenancy to its completion must be administered, controlled and concluded in a professional and lawful manner. This is why the NLCE works in close partnership with TenantReferencingUK.co.uk to offer all accredited members a free management platform where they can store and get reminders of important document renewals.