Originally Posted by figs666
BUT , by letting to the local authority i have 10 years hassle free .
anybody got any experience with this sort of thing ?
The local authority is not liable for repairs. They may give you up to one month's rent to cover damage by the tenants they themselves nominated. That's all the protection you have. The RAS scheme (what you're talking about) has many such flaws.
You also remain the landlord to the tenant in place and all your obligations under the various acts remain as if you "let it to professionals".
The only difference is the fact that you have a contract with the local authority to the side of the landlord tenant relationship that states the local authority will guarantee the rent payments directly to you and they will be responsible for getting the tenant to pay their share.
Some local authorities will allow YOU to nominate tenants that you will accept and the contract ends if/when those tenants leave. This is the only way I'd entertain using that scheme at present. The idea of giving up nomination rights to my property with no compensation when the local authority puts a family of a certain type in there and your whole house is stripped for its copper would scare me witless-no thanks!
In summary, it's not what you're looking for (guarantees, maintenance etc.) by the sounds of it.