Know How Guide - Renting a property
Step 1 – Finding the right property / register with us
Before you start looking for the right property, it is important to consider what your priorities are – what location do I wish to live in, how many bedrooms do I require, is a garage a priority, are gardens on my wish list – and then match potential properties against your available budget. Why not take a look at our handy and informative area guides to help you make your choice.
We always recommend that you register with us in advance so that we can help by matching your criteria to suitable properties as soon as they come on the market – either ring us or fill in our online form.
Step 2 – Booking a viewing
Once you have seen a property that you are interested in it is imperative that you get in touch with the office as soon as possible to arrange a suitable time for you to view the property, as our rental properties do not hang around long on the open market. Our dedicated team are of course on hand to help you in answering any questions about specific properties and to help you find the perfect home.
Step 3 – Making an application
Once you have viewed a property and have decided that it meets your needs you should notify our lettings team as soon as possible. Before making an application always bear in mind how much the deposit is (usually the first month’s rent) and agent fees that apply. In our case, tenant fees are £225.00 inclusive of VAT.
It is at this point that you will be asked to pay the NON-REFUNDABLE tenants fees and the referencing process can then begin. This will include the following, as a minimum:
- References from your current landlord and employer
- Full Credit checks which include, affordability, any default payments, search for CCJ’s or bankruptcy etc.
- Providing identification documents
In certain circumstances, you may be asked to provide a guarantor. The same reference checks are then carried out for your guarantor as were completed for you and there is an additional fee payable for these checks (£50.00 inclusive of VAT). We will then inform you if your application has been successful.
Step 4 – Arranging to move in
Once your application has been received and has been successful we’ll discuss with you a date for your tenancy to commence; you generally have twenty eight days from the date credit check results are received to finalise the tenancy. The commencement date of the tenancy is the rent due date in the tenancy agreement and you must bear this in mind when agreeing any dates as this date cannot be changed once agreed and documentation prepared.
Once a date has been agreed you will receive formal notification of the moving in date along with confirmation of monies required prior to check in. This is usually the one month’s rent (payable in advance) along with the Bond. A draft of the tenancy agreement, which you will be asked to sign at check in, will be provided to you so that you have time to read through the obligations and conditions contained therein. All of the legal and contractual obligations that both you and your landlord must adhere to are contained within and it is important that you are familiar with the agreement before signing. You should always seek legal advice before signing any legal documentation.
Before you can move in you must pay the balance of any monies owed, such as the first months’ rent, the deposit and any outstanding fees.
Step 5 – Check in
Once we are ready to move you in you will be asked to make an appointment to attend the office and sign off all of the relevant paperwork. This includes the following:
- Tenancy Agreement
- Prescribed Information Form
- Inventory/Schedule of Condition
At this appointment, you will also be handed the tenant move in pack which contains:
- Copy EPC
- Gas Safety Certificate ( if applicable )
- PAT Test Certificate
- Terms and Conditions regarding registering the Bond
- Repair Notice
- Tenant Move In Guide
Once all documentation has been signed you will be handed the keys to your new home.
Step 6 – Maintaining the tenancy
As a tenant, you have a number of duties and obligations – in summary, you should treat your new home and your neighbours with respect and if any issues arise, or you are experiencing difficulties (eg paying the rent) you should contact us as soon as possible so that we can help resolve any issues quickly.
As the tenant, you are expected to:
- Pay the rent on time
- Pay all utility bills
- Do general household and garden maintenance
- Dispose of all rubbish
- Clean the windows
- Carry out basic maintenance (such as replacing light bulbs)
- Keep the property secure at all times
- Advise of any repairs or maintenance needed as soon as it arises
- Ventilate property
- Not create unnecessary noise for neighbours
In return you should be able to expect to:
- Live in the property undisturbed
- Be given 24 hours’ notice if access to the property is required
- Have the landlord maintain the property and any appliances to a good state of repair (unless you are responsible for the damage)
- Have all gas, electricity and water supplies in working order
Step 7 – Ending the tenancy
Details of the period of notice that both you and your landlord must provide are set out in the tenancy agreement. You should inform us in writing as you have decided to move out and we will advise on the next steps and associated timelines.
Step 8 – Check out
Once notice has been served you will be provided with a Tenant Move Out Guide which provides you with all of the information (terms of Check Out) – what is expected of you, as the tenant, by way of ensuring that the property is returned to the standard required.
An appointment will be arranged for our Check Out Clerk to attend at the property, following on from the tenancy ending and a full Check Out Report will be prepared based on the Check In Report and any associated amendments/alterations.
For Check Out, you will need to:
- Have paid all of the rent due
- Make sure all of your belongings have been removed from the property
- Hand back all keys
- Make sure that the property is clean (to a professional standard) and that all contents are left intact
- Take a note of the meter readings
- Redirect mail & cancel all media services
- Cancel your standing order (we can’t do this for you)
- Furniture must be left as stated on the inventory
- Replace light bulbs that are not working
- Ensure the garden has been tended to and left in the same condition as stated on your inventory and move in photographs
- Put the rubbish bins out
Step 9 – Getting back your bond
At the checkout, the property and its contents will be assessed and compared to the initial check in report and subsequent inspection reports. A copy of the check out report will be forwarded on to both the landlord and you. It is expected is that the property is left in the same condition in which it was let to you – allowing for fair wear and tear.
The formalities of how and when the deposit is returned will depend on the provider that protects the deposit. You can refer to the Deposit Protection website for further information. Click Here
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