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Tenant FAQs

Tenant FAQs

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What will I need to rent a house through Goundrys Estate Agents?

If you want to apply for a property you have seen through Goundrys lettings then you will need to provide the following:

Satisfactory references - we will run a credit check on applicants, contact employers to confirm income and position held, contact previous landlords/agents to check your rental history.

Identification - We will require a photocopy of your photographic ID and a recent utility bill as proof of address.

Cleared Funds - If you are a successful applicant then we will require 1.5 months rent as a security deposit and 1 month’s rent in advance, these must be paid in cleared funds prior to the commencement of the tenancy. Cleared funds will be cash or monies that have cleared in our client account.

What are my responsibilities as a tenant?

As the tenant of a property you have certain responsibilities and are expected to treat the property in a certain manner as set out by law, this includes:

1. Pay rent

You will be expected to pay the specified rent by the date specified in your agreement.  This will most likely be on a monthly basis in advance. 

2. Report maintenance issues

You will be expected to report any maintenance issues at the property promptly to the landlord so that they can act upon them.  Issues that are not reported can cause long term damage to the property if not rectified and you have a legal obligation to report them.

3. Undertake routine maintenance

You will be responsible for undertaking routine maintenance such as changing light bulbs, changing smoke alarm batteries, clearing gutters and for keeping the property in a ‘tenant like manner’ (clean and reasonably maintained). This includes the outside areas of the property. You will also be expected to repair any problems that have been caused by you (through neglect, misuse or by accident).

4. Pay utilities

You will be expected to pay for the use of the utilities (gas, water, electricity, oil, council tax, telephone etc.) whilst you reside at the property.

Why do I need to pay a deposit and what happens to it?

A security deposit is taken at the beginning of the tenancy to cover damages and dilapidations at the property during the tenancy.  This deposit is equal to 1.5 x the monthly rental as standard on all properties rented through Goundrys Lettings.  Your tenancy agreement will have some guidance on what can be claimed from your deposit.

The deposit is protected via an approved government scheme as required by law, the scheme we use is the deposit protection service (www.depositprotection.com). The deposit is held in an account for the duration of the tenancy. 

You will receive some information via post or email regarding your deposit protection which will include a DEPOSIT ID, details about your deposit (including amount, property address etc.) and a REPAYMENT ID.  It is very important that you keep this information somewhere safe and accessible to ensure ease when reclaiming your deposit at the end of the tenancy.

In situations where there is more than one tenant named on the agreement you may be asked to nominate a ‘lead tenant’ (someone who will deal with all things relating to the deposit and agreement on all tenants behalf) and to sign a document to state that you are happy for all matters relating to the tenancy to be dealt with on your behalf by the lead tenant.

How do I apply for a Property?

In order to apply to rent a property you will need the following:

1. Application form

You will need to complete one application per applicant aged 18 or over. Information required on your application will include bank details to run a credit search, previous landlord details and employment details so make sure you have these available and let any referees you have put down know that they will be contacted for a reference as this is likely to speed up the process.  Click here to download an application form.

2. Application fees

Once your offer has been accepted by the landlord and you have completed your application form you will be required to pay the application fees at this point. This will include reserving the property whilst you are referenced, the referencing fee for each adult, administration of the application and creating the tenancy agreement.  Please contact us for more information about our competitive tenant’s fees.  

3. Photographic ID 

We will need a photocopy of your photographic ID.  If you don’t have a photocopy then just bring your ID and we will copy it for you!

What period of tenancy do I have to take?

You will be required to sign an Assured Short hold Tenancy Agreement for a minimum of 6 months. In exceptional circumstances shorter leases may be available.  If you would like to enquire about a shorter lease then our staff will be more than happy to help.

What happens if I want to stay longer?

At the landlord’s discretion the lease may be renewed for a further fixed term (typically 6 or 12 month’s) or may lapse into a statutory periodic agreement that continues to run indefinitely on the same terms as the initial agreement until either party serves the required written notice.

How do I get my deposit back?

In order to get your deposit back it will need to be agreed by both you and the landlord/agent. A final inspection or ‘check-out’ of the property will take place once the tenancy has finished determining whether or not there has been any damages or dilapidations to the property. If there are then these will be advised to the tenant.

You will need to know your Deposit ID and repayment ID in order to get your deposit back so it is very important you keep these in a safe place for the duration of your tenancy. If you have lost these don’t panic! You can have this re-sent to you by visiting the HELP section of www.depositprotection.com which will explain what you need to do if you have lost your repayment ID.

Once you have everything in order you can visit the DPS website, log in using your deposit ID and repayment ID and follow the instructions on the screen.

If you disagree with the claims made against your deposit then you will be invited to discuss this with your agent/landlord in order to come to an agreeable decision. If no agreement can be reached between both parties, the DPS adjudication process will be followed in which both parties are given the chance to provide evidence for their case and an independent body will make the decision. This decision will be final.

How do I pay my rent?

If we are managing the property then your rent will need to be paid by standing order into our client account. You will be provided with a standing order mandate form at the beginning of the tenancy with which you will need to fill out with your bank details, sign and give to your bank.

If your landlord is managing the property then the initial payment will be made to us and any further rental payments will be made to your landlord whose bank details will have been provided for you.

Do I have to undertake any repairs?

You will be required to undertake routine maintenance tasks such as changing light bulbs, changing smoke alarm batteries, clearing gutters and maintaining the outside areas (including weeding gardens/patios and mowing lawns) and to keep the property in a ‘tenant-like manner’. This means that the tenant must take reasonable care of the property and undertake small jobs and repairs.

What happens if I have an emergency out of office hours?

If you have an emergency out of hours then please contact one of the following:

  • Dave Goundry 07791 557 204 (first instance)
  • Owen Ford     07902007639 (second instance)
  • Lee Williams Plumbing & Heating (plumber)
  • Darrin Porter (electrician)

If no one answers please leave a message and someone will get back to you. Please refer to your tenant information pack for examples of what would be classed as an out of hour’s emergency.

What Identification do I need to show before I can move in?

You will be required to provide some form of photographic ID  (usually a passport or driving licence) of which we will take a photocopy and you may also be asked to provide proof of residency i.e. a utility bill.

When can I get the keys to my new property?

You will not be able to have the keys to the property until the day of the tenancy commencement.  All the relevant paperwork must be signed by all parties to the agreement (e.g. The Tenancy Agreement, Deposit Forms etc.) and the required monies for move in must have been received in cleared funds.  We will meet you at the property to hand over the keys and go through any relevant information you may require whilst residing at the property.

What other expenses should I expect other than my rent?

Unless it has been otherwise negotiated you will be responsible to pay all utility bills that relate to the property.  These are likely to include council tax, water, gas/oil and electricity usage.  You will also need to pay your TV licence (if you have a TV) and any phone or internet bills you may have.

What is fair wear and tear? 

The law defines fair wear and tear as "reasonable use of the premises by the tenant and the ordinary operation of natural forces." This refers to the twin forces of time and normal daily habits. Walking across a carpet from door to dining table, for example, will exert a wearing effect during the length of a year which is perfectly natural. 

It is a legal tenet that a landlord cannot expect to have old replaced with new at a tenant's expense. An allowance for fair wear and tear must be made when considering compensation for damage.

The law also prevents a landlord from replacing old items with new and charging the tenant for the privilege. This is called betterment.

Common Sense and experience will be used to determine fair wear and tear and things such as the quality of the supplied item, it’s age, the condition of it before the tenancy and at the end of the tenancy will be considered when deciding on what is fair wear and tear and what isn’t.

Can the Landlord enter the property without my permission?

A landlord or their agent may only enter the property with a minimum of 24 hours written notice. A landlord or agent that enters a property without the permission of the tenant or without giving the required written notice could potentially be classed as harassment.

There are certain circumstances in which a landlord, agent or appointed contractor may enter the property without this. These are usually in emergency situations and are extremely rare; please refer to your tenancy agreement for more information on when a landlord, agent or contractor can enter without prior notice or permission.