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FAQ's

FAQ's

 

In this section you will find some helpful answers for some commonly asked questions regarding your rented property.

 

 

How much will it cost me to rent?

Tenants

This will vary drastically depending on many factors; size, location, number of bedrooms being just 3 key factors. It is highly recommended to research what you can afford through such portals as Rightmove and Zoopla - and why not try our Affordability Calculator.

All Agents are legally obligated to clearly state their costs on any listing and on their website. Some agents charge fees left, right and centre - but for your peace of mind we keep our fee structure very simple, found here.

You then have your monthly utilities and expenditure to consider. Take a read of our Guide and Info pages for some helpful advice and tips and if you haven't already we would strongly advise you to produce a month by month budget. There are lots of websites that offer assistance in how to budget and what to consider.

Landlords

Our charges are always competitively low. They vary slightly depending on the service you would like - further details available here.

If you are new to letting property then it is always worth doing as much research as you can to ensure that you know what to expect from your Agent. We have lots of helpful information throughout our website, or indeed - please do get in touch.

 

 

What is a Tenancy Agreement?

A legally binding contract between a landlord/agent and tenant setting out both the legal and contractual responsibilities and obligations of the two parties. Terms and clauses should be fair and unbiased and it should be written in plain and intelligible language with no unnecessary content. It should not mislead regarding legal rights and responsibilities.

You can find sample agreements on our Guide to Tenants page.

 

 

What kind of Tenancy Agreement will be used?

The most common form of tenancy agreement used is an “Assured Shorthold” (an AST) under the 1988 Housing Act (amended 1996). You can see samples of our agreements on our Guide to Tenants page.

There are other types of tenancy used in certain conditions but you should always read through your tenancy agreement and if there is anything you don't understand fully then ask for clarification BEFORE signing as it is a legally binding document.

 

 

Are there any rules about what comes with a property?

There are no strict rules but as a general guide we advise our landlords to provide and our tenants to expect:

 

Unfurnished

White goods

Window coverings (curtains, blinds or nets)

Floor coverings (carpets, laminates etc)

 

Part-furnished

As unfurnished, but in addition you will find a few basic items of furnishing but again exactly what is included can vary depending on the property.

 

Furnished

In addition to the unfurnished items there will be a more comprehensive set of basic furniture in each of the rooms.

 

Please do bear in mind this is a general rule and it can vary a lot from property to property.

 

 

What is a Guarantor?

A guarantor is a representative of a tenant, for example a relative or friend, who agrees to co-sign a tenancy agreement and becomes jointly and severally liable for any tenant financial obligations.

Further help and guidance is available here.

 

 

'Joint & severally' - meaning

Joint & severally is a commonly used legal term used when there is more than one adult living in the property and means that all tenants are liable for all rents and liabilities in connection with their tenancy agreement and any breach of the agreement.

 

 

What is a 'Break Clause'?

Not all agreements will have a break clause, but they are typically used on tenancies of 1 year or more. It allows any party to give notice (usually 2 months) to end the tenancy early, usually at a pre-agreed length of tenancy running time.

 

 

As a tenant, am I entitled to know the name and address of my landlord?

In short - yes. If we manage the property we would be your first point of contact in the case of any questions/issues arising. However you are entitled by law to the name and address of your landlord should you so wish to have it. 

 

 

What about insurance?

When you rent a property it is the landlord's responsibility to insure the property itself and furnishing's/contents that are included with the property (listed on the inventory). It is then the responsibility of the tenant(s) to insure any of their own personal contents. We always recommend that you have this arranged to start on the date you move in to your property to make sure you are covered from day one.

We would advise landlords and tenants to review their insurance policies on a regular basis to make sure that all conditions are adhered to and that any changes to your circumstances/details are updated straight away so you can rest assured you are covered as you should be.

No responsibility whatsoever lies with the agent to arrange insurance and in fact as from 2005 it is illegal for an agent to do so without being authorised by FSA or directly related to a broker who is registered with the FSA.

 

 

Are there any safety regulations in connection with a rented property?

The law is very clear on what a landlords obligations are in connection with rental property. As a tenant, it will usually be listed as a clause in your agreement for you to care for and live in the property in a 'tenant-like manner' (or other similar phrase) but responsibility for organising Fire Alarm tests, Fire safety for Furniture & Furnishings, Gas Supply & Appliances and such lies with the landlord, though it may be arranged on their behalf by an agent.

 

 

Will I have an Inventory/Schedule of Condition?

An Inventory/Schedule of Condition is essential to every tenancy and is produced at the point of a new tenant moving in. It is a legally binding element alongside your tenancy agreement that describes the property, details any and all fixtures and fittings and the general condition of the property and contents. This will be consulted against at the end of the tenancy and forms a vital part of the decision to deduct any moneys from your holding deposit.

 

 

What about the Tenancy Deposit?

All landlords and agents will ask you for a deposit, though the amount is subject to them. A typical amount is 1.5 month's rent, as we charge. It is required by law that this deposit be protected with one of 3 schemes, and Digs choose the Deposit Protections Scheme - DPS. You will receive, along with your contract, what's called the Prescribed Information detailing how your deposit is protected and information on how to contact the scheme should you so wish.

The deposit is held in case of any damage to the property at the end of the tenancy over and above fair wear and tear, cleanliness of the property and in the event of non-payment of rent. This is where your Inventory comes in, so it is vital that you have read and agreed your inventory at the start of your tenancy.

You can see guidelines on fair wear and tear here - AIIC.

 

 

What rights of access does a landlord/agent have during a tenancy?

A landlord or their agent has a right to view the property at reasonable times of day with a minimum of 24 hour's notice (except in the case of an emergency). Reasons for entry can include maintenance, repairs, viewings for future tenants and inspections.

 

 

Repairs & Maintenance Issues

All landlords have a legal obligation to keep the property in a safe and habitable manner initiating repairs in a fair and reasonable timescale. Similarly, they have legal responsibilities in respect of the supply and safety of gas, water, electric, and waste disposal, the safety of furnishings and to provide space and water heating.

All tenants have an implied right for the duration of the tenancy to act in a 'tenant-like manner' for example taking reasonable steps to ensure tenants nor guests damage the property or its fixtures and fittings; report damage or maintenance in accordance with their contract and take responsibility for day to day tasks - such as replacing light bulbs and fire alarm batteries; tighten the odd screw that has come loose; to keep the property reasonably warm and aired to help prevent condensation and hence mould developing and pipes freezing; to leave the property secure when absent from it and to keep the garden and property reasonably tidy and free from rubbish.

 

 

All the information on this page is meant as a guide only to aid your letting experience with us and to help you know what to expect from being a landlord or tenant. Please bear in mind that we have simply highlighted regular questions asked and that all points are fully disclosed in any agreements sent to and signed by you.

We have lots more helpful links and information throughout our website for your perusal or indeed you can get in touch with us - we would be delighted to hear from you.