for tenants renting a property
information is given for general guidance only and should
therefore not be relied on. It has been prepared by an experienced
letting agent operating in the UK market in 2004 and since
posting this information here there have been many changes
in legislation in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.
also Credit Scoring & Credit References)
sure you have details ready of who is going to provide your
references (for example, employers, previous landlord or agent,
bank account etc) It is normal these days that if you are
renting via an Agents that they will use a Credit Search Company.
They will normally make a charge per applicant for this search.
Search Companies normally work on 30 X rent. e.g. rental of
£650 pcm X 30 = £19,500 (applicant must earn this amount per
annum – if not a guarantor might have to be used) * The credit
search company reserves the right to charge for a Guarantor’s
reference in addition and this will be charged out at the
normal applicant rate.
you are paying a 'reservation' or 'holding' deposit whilst
your application for a tenancy is processed, make sure you
get a receipt and a Holding Deposit Agreement from the Agent
that sets out the terms of this initial deposit and any circumstances
under which you may or may not get your money back.
is usually paid a calendar month in advance. The first payment
will be made by bankers draft/building society cheque (not
a personal one) and or Part Cash.
of money laundering regulations most Agents are only able
to accept a maximum of £500 in cash. Subsequent payments are
normally made by standing order or the Agent or Landlord.
If the payment of rent is late, interest is payable as shown
in the Tenancy Agreement.
deposit equivalent to approximately 6 weeks rent will normally
be required to settle any claim for dilapidations, or any
other breach of the tenancy agreement, which may arise, during
the tenancy or at the termination of the tenancy. The deposit
will be held by the Agents or the Landlord under the terms
of a designated Tenancy Deposit Scheme.
Tenancy Deposit Scheme
sure that you are present to check the inventory when you
move in and out of the property so that you can agree to any
amendments. We recommend that you keep a signed copy of both
the checking in and checking out inventory. This document
will form the basis of any compensations claimed against you
by the landlord.
the Agents have received acceptable references after consultation
with the Landlord, a Tenancy Agreement will be prepared for
the Tenant’s signature. The cost. Release Clauses are not
normally incorporated in a Tenancy Agreement so if you want
a Release Clause, you must agree this before you sign up.
Before you arrange a date and time to sign the tenancy agreement,
make sure that you (all tenants) have seen a copy and read
it through, so that everyone understands their obligations.
Ask questions to clarify anything that you are unclear on.
All tenants must sign the tenancy agreement before they can
ONCE YOU HAVE SIGNED...
Keep all your documents (such as
insurance policy, copy of tenancy agreement and inventory)
together in a file. Keep this file in a safe place
GAS- ELECTRICITY-TELEPHONE (SERVICES)
It is normally a condition of the
Tenancy that the services (i.e. electricity, gas and telephone)
are transferred into the Tenant’s name for the duration of
the Tenancy. If you require the telephone service you will
need to contact British Telecom or service provider direct.
In some instances, a deposit may be requested from the relevant
COUNCIL TAX/WATER CHARGES/TV LICENSE
Tenants will normally be responsible
for the payment of the Council Tax for the property they are
renting and will pay this direct to the Local Authority. They
must also advise the Local Authority when they move in/out
of a rented property.
Leaflets on Council Tax should be available from the Registration
Officer at the Council together with information on rebates
etc. A 25% discount is usually available on Council Tax for
single occupancy. It is the responsibility of the tenant to
pay for a TV License in respect of the property they are renting.
In most cases water charges are now paid for by Tenants in
renting a property
- Water Industry Act 1991 – Information about water
meters for home movers.
1989, most new homes built in England and Wales have had a
water meter installed. In addition to this, many water company
customers previously on a non-metered supply have opted for
1st April 2002 companies like Three Valleys Water
Plc in England have been installing water meters when a property
is sold. From the 1st January 2005 this company
will also be installing meters when a property is rented out.
government act covering this is under S1444B of the Water
Industry Act 1991.
TENANTS CONTENTS INSURANCE (For Further information
Tenants are advised
to insure their own possessions,
as this is not the
Landlords responsibility. You can arrange this yourself on
line by CLICKING
must contact the insurance provider for advice on policies.
STAMP DUTY ON TENANCY AGREEMENTS
From the 1st December 2003, Stamp
Duty has been abolished and replaced with Stamp Duty Land
Tax. The starting point for this is £125,000.(UK Budget March
2006)This means that the vast majority of Tenancy Agreements
will not attract SDLT.
sure that you are provided with a Landlords Gas Safety certificate
and if you are renting a furnished property that the furniture
has fire safety labels on it (arm chairs, beds, cushions etc)
and that a note is made on the inventory to that effect. The
Landlord must also make sure that electrical wiring and appliances
EPCs Energy Performance Certificates
for rental property in England and Wales started on the 1st
October 2008...more information here at our property site......
Many agents belong to professional
(Association of Residential Letting Agents)
(National Approved Letting scheme)
(National Association of Estate Agents)
RICS (Royal Institution of Chartered
agent will have certain obligations but these may vary from
simply letting the property to letting and managing the property.
out what the agent's responsibilities are. If they are simply
responsible for letting the building, find out who is responsible
for managing/ maintaining the property.
The agent will make regular checks on the property. Arrange
a mutually convenient time for these checks and make a note
Landlords will allow 2 or more tenants to share a property,
but the flowing must be noted:-
All tenants must understand the commitment they are entering
into and MUST remain at the property for the duration
of the rental agreement.
There can be NO assignment of a Lease under most types
of Contract, however if one of the tenants wishes to leave
and a replacement tenant is found, a new Agreement will
have to be prepared to include the replacement tenant
(subject to the Landlord’s prior approval) and the costs
of the new agreement, including the Landlord’s share,
will be the tenant’s responsibility.
Credit search references will also have to be taken up
on all new Tenants
All parties to the agreement must sign the Contract prior
to moving in. If one of the prospective tenants cannot
sign prior to moving in THEN NO ONE CAN MOVE IN UNTIL
EVERYONE HAS SIGNED. (A new agreement will not be prepared
if the tenancy is delayed by one or more of the tenants
not signing on time, unless of course, the tenants are
prepared to pay for a new agreement and they would have
to pay the Landlord’s costs in addition).
It is the practice for Landlords or their Agents to accept
the monthly rental by ONE Standing Order payment from
the Tenants and we would suggest you set up a “House Bank
Account” to cover this and any other outgoings for the
A ROOM IN A ROPERTY - Where the Landlord lives More
people have decided to let out a room in their own property
as a way of helping with morgage costs . HM Revenue and Customs
allows the owner occupier a tax-free income of up to £4,250
from letting rooms in your home.
lodger can occupy a single room or an entire floor of your
home. However, the scheme does not apply if your home is converted
into separate flats that you rent out. In this case you will
need to declare your rental income to HM Revenue & Customs
(HMRC) and pay tax in the normal way. Nor does the scheme
apply if you let unfurnished accommodation in your home.
Landlord does not have to be a home owner and can choose to
take advantage of the Rent a Room scheme, regardless of whether
they are a home owner or are renting their home. However,
if you are renting, you should check whether your lease allows
you to take in a lodger and ask your Landlord this.
Agreements for being a Resident Landlord
you have found a property it is best to get the Landlord tp
make out a tenancy agreement with them. You do not need to
fill in any special forms, but it is best that you make an
agreement in writing. This will help you if there are any
problems later. There are some basics which should be included
in your agreement
much notice you must give the Landlord
much notice the Tenant should give to the Landlord
How long is the tenancy is for
rooms are being let
facilities are being shared
How much the rent will be paid
the rent include bills? e.g electricity, gas, telephone,
internet, water, Council tax and even food.
When the rent is due
How should rent be paid (cash, cheque, standing order, direct
Is the deposit payable when the tenant moves in and when
it will be returned and how it will be held by the Landlord
the Landlord and the tenant should sign the agreement.
tips for cold weather from Thames Water Here
and Assured Shorthold Tenancies: A guide for tenants
probably need to read this booklet if you are renting, or
thinking of renting, a domestic property and the letting began
on or after 15 January 1989.This booklet does not deal with
agricultural lettings, or lettings by housing associations,
local authorities or other social landlords. This booklet
explain the most important features of tenants' and landlords'
rights and responsibilities but it is only a general guide
from Communities and Local Government - Find
out More Here
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