Homefront: 'Should I change my UK mortgage if I move to Abu Dhabi?'

The Briton plans to let out the South London property when she relocates to the UAE

LONDON, ENGLAND - AUGUST 22:  Houses in a residential area of south London on August 22, 2016 in London, England. A forecast released today claimed that central London house prices will fall this year as the effect of the Brexit vote takes its toll before a recovery takes hold in 2018.  (Photo by Carl Court/Getty Images)
Beta V.1.0 - Powered by automated translation

I am about to move to Abu Dhabi from the UK where I have a mortgage on a home in South London. I plan to let out the two-bedroom property when I relocate to the UAE. Do I need to let my mortgage provider know I am leaving the country and that I plan to rent the property out. I am on a fixed-term mortgage that will expire in about 18 months; should I wait until that happens or tell them now? Also what will happen to my mortgage if I let the property to tenants? MB, London

If you are planning on renting out your property and have a mortgage attached to it, you should definitely inform the mortgage provider of your intentions whether you are relocating abroad or not.

In terms of when to inform them, legally you should do so at the point of change itself because should anything untoward happen, your liability could be affected, which may cause you problems in the future. Informing your bank will legalise exactly what you are planning to do and I confirm there is a strong possibility your mortgage product could also change. By this I mean that after your fixed-term agreement has expired, your interest/profit rate will likely be more expensive.

The other point to consider is insurance. When you let your property out, there will be a need for a different kind of insurance, which will cater for landlord/tenant issues rather than owner occupier ones.

I recommend speaking directly to your bank or perhaps an independent mortgage broker, who will be able to offer you a wide choice of home loan options.

I am moving into a villa in April. The property is well maintained and in good condition, but it could do with a fresh coat of paint and a thorough clean. Should the landlord make sure this happens before I move in or is it my responsibility to clean and paint the villa? WL, Abu Dhabi 

At the start of any tenancy, it is standard practice that the property (whether it is an apartment or villa) should be handed over to a new tenant freshly painted and thoroughly cleaned. This is the responsibility of the landlord (if never rented before) or the outgoing tenant (if previously rented).

In the case of a vacating previous tenant, he/she must return the property back to the landlord in exactly the same condition as it was given. This means the property must be freshly painted and cleaned; this also includes any repairs needed during the tenancy period.

In case your landlord has not organised this due to perhaps being out of the country, for example, it is quite in order for you to both agree that you will get the work done on behalf of the owner and to send the invoice to him/her.

Mario Volpi is the sales and leasing manager at Engel & Volkers. He has worked in the property sector for 35 years in London and Dubai

The opinions expressed do not constitute legal advice and are provided for information only. Please send any questions to mario.volpi@engelvoelkers.com