Finding a property

The first step is to contact us by telephone or email to provide us with brief details about yourself and about the type of property you are ideally looking for. We will then match your criteria to suitable properties that we have available (unless you have seen one of our properties already) and arrange a mutually convenient time for you to view. If your enquiry is not urgent, we will record your details in order that we can contact you as soon as a suitable property becomes available. It is wise to start looking approximately one month before you wish to move, since properties are viewed and reserved quickly and it is unlikely that a landlord will hold a property for you unless you are able to move in within a one month period.

Viewings

Viewings will be arranged at times to suit you, including early evenings and Saturdays. All of our prospective tenants are invariably accompanied on viewings, which allows us to answer any queries that you may have about the property or our Terms of letting. It is essential for you to know, as a tenant, what items will remain in the property and what your responsibilities are as a tenant.

Reserving the property and application procedure

Once you have decided to apply for a property, you will need to return completed application forms to us and pay the non-refundable application fee (see Tenant Fees page) to secure the property ‘subject to contract’. Each person over the age of 18 who will be living at the property must complete and sign our application form. You can be assured that we will only take the application fee payment if we dont foresee any potential problems with you as the prospective new tenant. If you are concerned about this or would like further information about our tenant criteria, simply call us to explain your situation and we will gladly listen and advise. Other monies due before the start of the tenancy are:

One* months rent in advance (*unless more than one month agreed)
Deposit (normally equivalent to one months rent plus £100.00, unless you have a pet then normally plus £200)

References

As a minimum we will require satisfactory written references from your employer or accountant, a previous or current landlord / letting agent reference and a credit check to be undertaken. All references will be requested by us, which may be via an independent referencing company or referencing may be manually conducted in house. In circumstances where our referencing criteria is not met, a Landlord may request that a suitable Guarantor be provided by you. A Guarantor should be UK based, have a clean credit check, be employed or self employed with an accountant and be earning a sufficient salary.

Type of Tenancy

Your personal circumstances will determine what type of tenancy agreement is drawn up. A draft tenancy agreement for your information to set out all clauses and terms will be issued to you at the point of application. Our standard tenancy is an Assured Shorthold Tenancy (AST) for 12 months with a break clause after 6 months, to enable either Landlord or Tenant to end the tenancy by giving notice.

ID Documents

We will need to see sight of certain original ID documents for all occupants over the age of 18 before the tenancy commences (for example, passport, UK driving license card, birth certificate, proof of residency letter for current address, etc). A list of acceptable documents will be issued as part of the application.

Moving in

On the day your tenancy starts we will arrange to meet you to sign the Tenancy Agreement, standing order mandate and the Inventory & Schedule of Condition document (if applicable). You will also have to pay your initial monies in cleared funds (ie not a cheque). All documentation will be carefully explained to ensure that you fully understand the legal implications before signing the tenancy agreement and committing to the tenancy. At this point we will leave you with the keys for you to move in at your leisure. You will be informed whether we are managing the property during the tenancy or if the Landlord is directly.

Inventory and Schedule of Condition

A full Inventory & Schedule of Condition is prepared prior to the commencement of all tenancies (unless Landlord requests otherwise). This document is laid out room-by-room documenting the whole condition, cleanliness and contents. We retain one copy and you have the other, along with an Amendment Sheet. It is important that you notify us within 7 days of the start of the tenancy on the amendment sheet provided, if there are any discrepancies with the Inventory. We recommend that you keep the Inventory & Schedule of Condition in a safe place as it forms the basis of any claims for damages at the end of the tenancy.

Tenancy Deposit

Many tenants are concerned about their deposit which is held to cover the cost of any damages, missing items, cleaning and outstanding rent etc. All deposits held by us are registered with The Dispute Service (TDS) tenancy deposit scheme and a certificate issued, which effectively protects your deposit and also provides a third party dispute resolution service if we are unable to agree any deductions at the end of a tenancy.

Rents

Rents are normally quoted calendar monthly, and are payable monthly in advance, by bankers standing order (not Direct Debit, but very similar)

Utilities and Council Tax registration:

We will register all named on the Tenancy Agreement with utilities and council tax authorities. Meter readings will be taken and passed on too. We will inform you who supplies the water, gas and electricity. We are not responsible for these companies setting up new accounts from the information we provide to them so we suggest you make contact with them directly to pass on the accurate information and readings too.

Insurance

You are required to insure all of your own contents and personal belongings. If you would like a contents insurance quotation, we can suggest a insurance broker, so just let us know.

Smoking

Smoking is NOT permitted inside the property

Gas Safety Regulations

We/the Landlord are obliged to ensure that all gas appliances are safety checked annually and you will be given a current certificate at the start of a tenancy (if the property has gas)

Alarm codes

Any changes of an alarm code (if applicable) must be requested first.

Changes to property

Anything you wish to change must not be done until written permission has been given by us or the Landlord. Typical example of changes are décor colour and fitting of shelves/brackets/pictures etc

Landline telephones, Sky/Virgin Media and TV Licensing:

Although we do have a partner for telephone, television and broadband connections, we otherwise are not involved in the registration of any of the services listed in this section. As a Tenant, you are responsible for any installation costs incurred when taking up these services. Before you have an aerial, satellite dish or Virgin Media box fitted, remember to ask permission first (as this is also a change)

Tenant Obligations / Repairs

You will be responsible for the property and will be expected to report any repairs that are the landlords' liability. However, general maintenance, for instance changing light bulbs, keeping the drains clear, looking after the garden etc. will be your responsibility. If the landlord himself is looking after the property, you will be notified of their telephone number so that you can make contact directly should any problems occur.
If we manage the property and you have a repair, please call or email us now.

Moving Out

We require you to submit one month's notice in writing if you want to end your Tenancy, which must expire after any break clause or fixed term date. Upon receipt of your notice we will contact you in order to arrange a mutually convenient time to conduct a formal end of tenancy checkout inspection at the property and to collect your keys. In the event that you are not available to hand back your keys you will be required to arrange a representative on your behalf or send the keys to our office by secure method. We will take all meter readings and deregister your name(s) from utility companies and council tax. You will be required to confirm your forwarding address in order for us to finalise your tenancy ending. In most cases, the deposit is returned by bank transfer within 7 working days, providing you leave the property is left in good condition with no works required at your expense.