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TENANTS GUIDE TO RENTING A PROPERTY WITH BIGSTREET


Renting a home can even be more helpful for many reasons. Infact renting can be cheaper and easier than owning a home and bills can be more anticipated. Renting your home can be more flexible in terms of location preference, property selection in terms of apartment or house and in many ways. But it’s great news for those who prefer stable finances with fewer outgoings. As a result, you save more money.

Further, renting gives you greatest peace of mind when it comes to maintenance of the property. Most of the maintenance work is done by your landlord.

The rental process is the same every time you find a new home. Rental properties normally become available about two months before the end of tenancy, so where possible it is worthwhile to start looking early.

This tenant guide will provide you with guidance and information on how to secure a rental property, and give you an insight about tenancy agreements and procedures. At Bigstreet, keeping your best interests in mind we offer you our best of services at all times and we simply consider ourselves devoted to you.

Finding a property can be exhaustive at some point if you do not start searching a rental property.
Don’t worry, just keep following points in mind..
Know your Budget
Search well before Time (September to December could be the best time to find a quality properties)
Shortlist your Requirements
Choose Right Area (which has a maximum number of amenities nearby)
Select suitable Accommodations (house/ apartment)
Usually there is no specific time for searching a property, but again if the property is not searched in time, you may miss an opportunity finding your dream place.
Don’t worry, its easy..
Know your Budget (i.e. total)
Allow at least 2 months before your tenancy ends
Know which is the most suitable Area (i.e. transportation, nearby amenities, banks, super markets etc)
Understand, what you like more (house/ apartment)
Choose the right interior option, keeping your finance in mind (furnished / unfurnished)
Figure out your convenient Bills Options (inclusive / exclusive)

Tell us what kind of property you are looking for, you have lots of properties to choose from. We’ll help you find your perfect home.

Tenant Guide

 

Once you have found a rental property you like, book a viewing as early as you can. Due to high demand in rental property market, properties come and go quite quickly. Good properties do not stay for long. So it is highly advisable to secure the property as fast as you can. Contact your Bigstreet office and book the viewing straight.

We understand how important is searching an ideal home for you. Thanks to our long viewing hours till 8pm. We also arrange weekend viewings in busy schedule.

Let’s understand the steps involved

 

   But, what has changed from 1st June 2019?

   Permitted Payments :

   Membership Details :

   Details of non-requirement of Client Money Protect:

 

   The following fees will become non applicable under new Tenant Fee Act from 1st June 2019.

For Students:

As soon as you like the property, it is strongly recommended you block the property at the same time, on the same day by paying agency fees.

We have witnessed many tenants liking the property but not booking it at the same time and lose the property due to not being spontaneous in decision making. That is why, we advise you to book the property as fast as you can just to avoid disappointments.

There is as little as £70 – £100 per application (including VAT) agency fee to carryout tenancy particulars. I.e. Processing tenant’s application, Tenant’s ID check, Right to Rent check, Personal ID check, Guarantor check, setting up tenancy and general administrative costs etc. Reference and other checks (if applicable). Right to rent check still comes under landlord’s obligation.

 

Optional Extras (if required) –

Right to rent check – £15 per applicant

Credit Check – £20 per applicant (per attempt) if applicable

Full credit and reference check – £30 per applicant (per attempt) if applicable

Guarantor credit and reference check – £30 per applicant (per attempt) if applicable

Content Insurance – call for more details

Cancellation (Pre-Contract Sign) – Non refundable and non transferable agency fee

Cancellation (Post-Contract Sign) – A moving out tenant MUST find a new replacement tenant (fully accepted by the current existing tenants in the property) and MUST pay two weeks rent cancellation charge, a new replacement tenant MUST pay the agency fee and the deposit. Moving out tenant MUST pay the rent until a new replacement tenant moves in and all dues are paid in full. Once all paperwork is completed by a new replacement tenant and cleared all dues, and he/she has moved into the property, within 2 weeks period the deposit would be released to a moving out tenant (if there are any dues/ charges/ costs/ fees if any which will be deducted from the deposit)

All the fees mentioned above are including taxes.

Important Note :

  1. From 1st April 2019 : No Deposits shall be collected nor protected by us since we do not manage the properties. Therefore, we do not require a client account or to be the member of client money protect scheme.
  2. From 1st June 2019  :  Under Tenant Fees Act, all such fees (as mentioned above) shall become non-payable. Subject to the Tenant Fee ban draft.

Please note : Should you not have the UK based guarantor who is a UK home owner, you would need to find someone who can be your guarantor. We may carryout a credit and reference check on your guarantor for financial security which is £30 per applicant (per attempt).

Before you move into the property, you should have a valid guarantor and all dues must be paid in full and all paperwork should be completed thoroughly. The agency fee and other costs such as credit and referencing, right to rent check etc. are non refundable and non transferable in case you withdraw your application. We may withdraw or cancel your application in case you fail to find a suitable guarantor or any of your tenancy related documents/ paperwork is incomplete. And we will make the property available in market again.

For Professionals:

So, what is changing from 1st June 2019?

Permitted Payments :

Holding Deposit (One week rent only). You may lose this if you provided false or misleading information or document or not made clear via email confirmation before making the payment.

Security deposit (upto 5 weeks rent only). If you paid the holding deposit, you need to pay the rest of the security deposit only to make it full.

Again, there may be other permitted payments depending on landlord to landlord or property to property, and this would be made clear to you before you make any payments to reserve the property.

Membership Details :

Big Street Lettings is a member of Property Redress Scheme.

Details of non-requirement of Client Money Protect:

We do NOT collect or hold client money in any form. Tenants pay the deposits directly to the respective landlord via bank transfer. Therefore, this membership is not required.

 

The following fees will become non applicable under new Tenant Fee Act from 1st June 2019.

There is as little as £125 per person (including tax) agency fee to carryout tenancy particulars. I.e. Processing tenant’s application, Tenant’s personal ID check, Employment check, Guarantor check (if applicable), setting up tenancy and general administrative costs etc.

 

Other charges –

Credit Check – £20 per applicant (per attempt)

Full credit and reference check – £30 per applicant (per attempt)

Right to Rent and Immigration check – £15 per applicant

Guarantor reference and credit check (if applicable)

 

Optional Extras – Content Insurance (call for more details)

All the fees mentioned above are including taxes.

Please note : Should you fail in your credit/ reference check or the credit/ reference check score is not satisfactory, you may be asked to find a guarantor/s and your guarantor/s will be reference checked at extra costs. Before you move into the property, you should be accepted and through with all the required checks and all dues must be paid in full. The agency fee and other costs such as credit and referencing, right to rent check etc. are non refundable and non transferable in case you withdraw your application. We may withdraw or cancel your application in case you fail to find a suitable guarantor or any of your tenancy related documents/ paperwork is incomplete. And we will make the property available in market again.

Once the property is blocked we perform reference check per application if required. (if so, referencing fees will be charged separately per application).What details we check in referencing procedure?

  •  Personal & Photographic Identification (Student ID, Passport / Driver Licence)
  •  UK Guarantor Details (Photo ID, Proof of Funding)
  •  Foreign Students (University / Country of Origin Sponsor Letter)
  •  Confirmation of Employment and Salary
  •  Previous Landlord References
  •  Employer Letter (if required)
  •  Trading details
  •  Accountant’s references
  •  Last three years returns

*Please note that should your reference applications be unsuccessful then the administration and reference fee/s is non-refundable.
It may be helpful that disclosing relevant facts that may adversely affect your reference outcome, prior to entering into above. It may save your money.

Once the referencing is done successfully, you need to pay the deposit straight into the landlord’s account as per the deadline, which can vary from 5 weeks to 6 weeks rent. Deposit should be paid in either as holding deposit of One Week Rent or a full deposit as per the deadline as agreed. And, it will be landlord’s responsibility to protect the deposit under govt. approved deposit schemes. You could ask the landlord to provide you the certificate for the same.

New Legislation for Client Money : We do not collect client’s deposits nor protect them nor manage the properties. And that is why do not require to be a member of client money protect scheme.

We are the member of Property Redress Scheme.

It is important to carry out administration and paperwork once deposit is fully paid. In this section, you will need to fill out a few application forms, guarantor forms, yours and guarantors personal ids, employment letter, proof of funding, bank statements, payment method forms etc.

Tenancy agreement will be signed by both the Landlord and Tenant/s before tenancy starts, the agreement outlines both landlord and tenants obligations.Usually, the tenancies run for a period of six to twelve months. We will contact you when the tenancy reaches to become due to see whether you wish to renew your agreement for further period, we will liaise with the landlord to organize the documentation. It is imperative that agreement is made between you as a tenant and the landlord, in such cases we act for the landlord only.

By legal requirement we will issue you with a sample template of agreement which we advise you to read carefully and it is very important that should you have any questions arise regarding this legal document we advise you to seek an independent legal advice before signing it.

As the references have been approved by landlord and the moving date is agreed and the contract is signed by both parties, the first step to fulfill is to pay initial monies which is to be paid in full including all due monies. These monies are paid and cleared before the tenancy commences, payments can be paid either by bank draft, cash or paid directly into the account and showing as cleared.

Moving in is the most exciting time for any tenants! Sometimes students wish to just move their luggage in the property in summer and start living in the property from September. Therefore we advise, do let the landlord know about your move in plans so that key arrangements could properly be done. Before you move in, you could ask the landlord to provide you with the inventory check in list (if available with the landlord).Moving out procedure is quite simple too. Do remember your move out dates just to avoid any further per day charges you might have to pay. And it may be a breach of contract if you do not leave the property as mentioned in your agreement. But if you do wish to continue staying in the same property, do let us or your landlord know about it. We will prepare documentations or contract if needed to be drawn and signed by both parties.

Moving out can be little crucial since your deposit returns relies on how clean and up to date you have left the property. Minor wear and tear can be ignored but if the property is left unclean or if there is any damage in inventory, white goods what so ever within the property, the landlord could recover this cost from your deposit.

To terminate the tenancy you are required to give us one month notice in writing of your intention to leave. Please make sure you pay all due monies (rent, sort out utilities-gas, water, electric, tv licence, internet, council tax etc on your own).The responsibility of your all belongings will purely be on yours. The landlord will not be liable to accept such responsibilities and cannot be held responsible for any loss or damage to tenants possessions what so ever.

Make sure you have adequate Content Insurance for your belongings for peace of mind.

A well prepared inventory and check in report protects both the landlords and tenants with accurate description of the condition and contents of a property at the start of tenancy. Then the condition and the contents are compared with inventory check in report at the time of check out report.

It is landlord’s duty to ensure that proper inventories are prepared for the properties they own. In the worst scenario, should you end up in court and the judge will likely to look more favorably impartial, neutral inventory prepared by a third party unconnected with landlord or tenants.

The landlord could hold the deposit in order to cover any reasonable costs. Further, the deposit may not be returned if the tenant leaves the property before due date of tenancy agreement. In such circumstances, the tenant will need to pay the rent for remaining / due months left of tenancy period. The deposit will be deducted if the rent is not paid or due by the tenant. Also, the holding deposit shows good faith on the part of a prospective tenant/ s enabling the landlord to take further action in the confident knowledge that the applicant is genuinely interested and fully committed to the property.

Normally deposit is returned after inventory check out (if performed by the landlord) just to make sure there are no any damages or major wear and tear in the property. If so, landlord may deduct the cost of damages or wear and tear from the deposit.

During the tenancy period, it will be tenants responsibility to secure the property. Make sure the property is tidy all times. The floor is hovered timely, kitchen and kitchen appliances are cleaned on time to prevent grease building. During winter time, steps are taken to prevent freezing of the water and heating system.Make sure the bathroom is cleaned and hygiene is maintained.

We might arrange a property inspection if we are managing the property on behalf of landlord or as instructed by the landlord. This could be monthly or quarterly as per the landlords want us to carry out.The aim of inspection is to see whether the property is being kept neat and clean in a satisfactory condition. We arrange you a visit with mutually convenient time.

It is tenant’s duty to register with the council tax office or local authorities to amend changes as soon as they move in. If you are students, usually you are exempted to pay council tax but this will be your duty to register your details with your local council or related authorities.VAT may be charged at current VAT rates (if applicable).

Earn yourself £50* when you register your landlord of the property you are staying in.
This offer will be applicable only when we do not have the same property with us. Should we have the same property/ landlord already registered with us, you will not be able to claim the offer.
Multiple tenants living in same property shall not be able to register the same landlord/ property.
The offer amount shall be offered in the form of food voucher (per property only).

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