What references do you take up?
You will be required to complete a referencing process as part of your application.
This will include:
• Identification and address verification
• Financial History
• Employment References
• Current Landlord/Agent references
We will require copies of your identification documents and address verification documents.
We will also require you to sign an applicants’ agreement which clearly sets out the costs, and the terms and conditions of applying for a tenancy at a property.
Do you charge an agency fee?
Yes, we do charge an agency fee which we believe is highly competitive and provides for the following:
• Application Fees including Referencing
• Tenancy Agreement and/or Deed of Guarantee preparation
• Comprehensive photographic and video inventory of the property
• Check In appointment at the property
• Informing the Council and Utility suppliers that you have moved into the property
The application process is designed to make it simple for you to apply for a property, whilst still ensuring that the relevant references are obtained promptly on behalf of the Landlord.
Will I need a Guarantor?
Guarantors will normally be required in the following situations:
• Where a Tenant is unable to fulfil/satisfy the minimum referencing criteria
• Tenants in receipt of Housing Benefit
• Students/sharer tenancies
• Where a Tenant has come into the country from overseas
• If a Guarantor is required they will also go through the comprehensive referencing process.
Do you take a deposit?
Yes we do. This is general equal to one months’ rent but may be higher in certain circumstances. If we are managing the property we will lodge the deposit with one of the Government approved Deposit Schemes and deal with the mandatory notifications.
What happens to my deposit at the end of the tenancy?
The deposit is lawfully the tenants’ money and so any claim by the Landlord on your deposit must be reasonable and justified. If the property is managed by us we will conduct a check-out inspection and use the initial inventory and the conditions laid out in the tenancy agreement to assess the condition of the property and any fixtures, fittings or furniture that were provided. The majority of tenants will receive their deposit back in full. Occasionally there can be a minor issue which we would negotiate with the tenant concerned. If the issue cannot be resolved then it is referred to an independent adjudication process.
Further information can be obtained from the tenancy deposit scheme holding your deposit.
Do I need to have Contents insurance?
The simple answer is ‘No’, but we do recommend that you consider taking out a policy to protect your own possessions. Some policies will also provide cover in the event that accidental damage is caused to the Landlords property e.g. spilling red wine and staining a carpet. We can introduce you to insurance brokers who provide specialist Tenants Contents Insurance.
Who is responsible for maintenance?
Landlords have specific legal responsibilities in relation to maintaining the property e.g. heating and water systems. However, minor maintenance can be the responsibility of the tenant e.g. if the hinges on a door are squeaking. Some Landlords will undertake all the maintenance at a property. Any maintenance issue should be reported to the office if we are managing the property or direct to the Landlord if the property is being managed direct.
Who is responsible for Council Tax and Utility Bills?
The tenant is responsible for all the bills during the tenancy unless specified otherwise e.g. if the property is a multiple occupancy property.
As part of our service to you we will inform the Council, Water, Electricity and Gas suppliers that you have moved into or out of a property and of the relevant meter readings where appropriate.
Do you accept tenants who are claiming Housing Benefit (Local Housing Allowance)?
Landlords can choose to make their properties available to tenants who are in receipt of Housing Benefit if they wish to do so. We have many Landlords who have successfully let their properties to tenants claiming Housing Benefit. We will be able to advise you if a property is available to be let to a claimant.
Will the Landlord provide white goods (Fridge/ Washing Machine etc)?
There generally is no obligation on the Landlord to provide ‘white goods’. There are some exceptions in relation to multiple occupancy properties or where the white goods are integrated in kitchen or utility room units.
Sometimes white goods may be left at the property for use by the tenant, but are ‘gifted’ so the responsibility for repair falls to the tenant. You will be advised as to the position prior to applying for a tenancy.
Are we allowed to decorate ourselves?
The answer to this is ‘Yes’ with the Landlords written permission. The general rule, which will be documented if a request is received, is that the room concerned should be returned to its original state prior to vacating the property.
Will I be able to erect a satellite dish?
Generally this would be agreed to unless there is good reason to object e.g. a covenant in the Deeds of the Property which prevents aerials and satellite dishes being erected on the property (this is common on flats/apartments).
Can I keep pets at the property?
No, unless you have written permission to do so from the Landlord. Many Landlords are quite willing to allow pets in their properties, but permission must be obtained first. If you have a pet or intend to get a pet this must be declared when you apply to rent the property. Some properties will be restricted from keeping pets e.g. flats and apartments.
If you do have a pet at the property a higher deposit may be required and there may be an additional term in your tenancy agreement in relation to cleaning at the end of the tenancy.