Choosing an agent to let a property from is as important as the property itself. As a tenant you want to know that your application will be dealt with promptly and professionally and, once in your new home, any issues will be resolved quickly and efficiently by friendly, experienced staff.
 
Find a property

Once you have found a property that suits your needs, all you need to do is complete a simple application form. Anyone who is over the age of 18 will usually be asked to fill out an application form. Please ensure that all sections of the form are completed, we will then process your reference as quickly as possible.

Time Scale

It usually takes a minimum of 7 working days before you will be able to move into your property. Although every effort will be made by all parties to accommodate your moving date, unfortunately, no guarantees can be made. We will notify you as soon as possible as to whether your application has been successful. Once your application has been approved, a mutually convenient time and date will be agreed for the tenancy to commence. At this point it will be necessary for all prospective tenants and guarantors (where required) to attend the office to sign the tenancy agreement. Once the tenancy agreement has been signed you will receive a copy for your retention.

Guarantors
 
If you are unemployed or are a student you will require a guarantor. You may also require a guarantor if your income falls short of the required figure. To determine this, check your annual salary is at least 30 times the monthly rent. For example a rent of £500 pcm would require a minimum of £15,000 annual salary. If a guarantor is required, they will need to complete an application form and be referenced before a tenancy can be considered. As a guarantor their income will need to be 36 times the monthly rent. For example, a rent of £500 pcm will require a guarantor’s income to be at least £18,000 per annum.

Fees

There is an administration fee payable for each applicant over the age of 18.This fee covers the cost of our referencing process. The fee is payable at the time of submitting your application. Please note that if your application fails or is withdrawn, the cost is non-refundable.  If a guarantor is required there is also a fee to cover the cost of the guarantors referencing and this is also non-refundable.

Advance Payment
Please note that an advance payment of a month’s rent and the security deposit (usually equivalent to one month’s rent) must be paid before the keys can be released. Your initial payment can be paid by bank transfer, bankers draft or cash.

Tenancy Deposit Protection
 
From 6th April 2007 when you pay a deposit, your Landlord or agent must protect it using a government authorised tenancy deposit scheme. This is to ensure you get all or part of your deposit back when you are entitled to it and any disputes will be easier to resolve. Within 28 days of paying your deposit your Landlord or agent is required to give you details about how your deposit is protected. This includes the contact details of the tenancy deposit scheme and what to do if there is a dispute at the end of the tenancy. Properties that are fully managed by Paul Birtles Estate Agents have their deposits lodged with The Deposit Protection Service with whom we are registered. Properties that are not managed by ourselves will be forwarded to the relevant Landlord and they are responsible for informing the tenant which deposit protection scheme they use.
 

Restrictions

Please be aware that some Landlords impose certain restrictions in respect of the following:-

  • Pets
  • Smokers
  • Housing Benefit/DSS
  • Students


Inventory

An inventory for the property will usually be prepared to include the condition, contents, furniture and fittings. This will be supplied to you to be checked and signed. A copy will be kept on file and one supplied for your retention.   It is important that you take care agreeing the Inventory at it will form the basis of any claim for damages by your Landlord at the end of the tenancy.

Rent

You will also be asked to set up a standing order for the monthly rental payments. This will be payable each month in advance and will be collected on a set date as stated in the tenancy agreement. Should you experience any financial problems during the course of the tenancy, it is essential that you contact us immediately.
 
Tenant’s Contents Insurance

The Landlord is not responsible for insuring any of your personal belongings. Therefore we strongly recommend that you obtain adequate contents insurance. If you would like a free, no obligation quotation, please speak to one of our staff.

Non-Managed Lets

Where Paul Birtles Estate Agents is not responsible for the management of the tenancy, you will be given the Landlord’s contact details.

Tenants Obligation

You should be aware that responsibility for the property rests with the tenant during any tenancy. It is particularly important that any gas or electricity problems are reported immediately and the property is fully secured when you leave it unattended at any time. During the winter months, necessary steps must be taken to prevent the freezing of the water and heating system.
 
In Leasehold properties, mainly flats and maisonettes, the tenant will be bound by the rules and regulations affecting all residents within the block contained in the head lease.

Utilities

 Paul Birtles Estate Agents will provide you with the details of the gas, electricity and water suppliers and you have an obligation then to contact them to set up your individual account and notify them of meter readings at the commencement of the tenancy. We will also write to the local authority for council tax purposes and you should also contact them to provide your personal details.