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Guidance for Tenants

Tenancy Application/References

When a suitable property to rent has been found ALL persons aged eighteen or over will be referenced/ID and named in the Tenancy Agreement. We will take up references on behalf of the Landlord, which may include a bank reference for which your bank may charge a nominal fee, a credit reference check, an employer's / accountant's and present/previous Landlords reference (if applicable). A payment to indicate your commitment (reservation deposit) is required together with an administration charge of £150.00 per adult when an agreement with the Landlord of the chosen property is in place. If your application is successful the reservation deposit will be deducted from your final balance payable. Should your references be returned to our agency with an adverse response, and we are unable to proceed with the rental then the reservation deposit will be returned to you in full but not the admin charge.

The reservation deposit is non-refundable should you decide not to proceed with the rental, the details of which are set out in our ‘Notice of Charges’ letter. Please note that this money in advance does not constitute a tenancy or offer of a tenancy but is required as proof of your intention to proceed.

Security Deposit

Before your tenancy commences you will be required to pay a security deposit which is normally one months rent. In some cases the Landlord will require a larger deposit. This deposit is held by us as stakeholders under the TDS scheme for which we are members or passed to the landlord under the terms of the Tenancy Deposit Scheme. You will receive a Tenancy Deposit Registration certificate from whoever is holding your deposit.

The deposit is held against any damages or expenses arising during your tenancy and will not be released until after you vacate the property, all rent has been paid up to date and we have written confirmation of any costs for damages from both parties. No interest is payable to either party.

Tenancy Deposit Protection

Legislation regarding tenancy deposits came into force on the 6th April 2007. A Landlord who does not adhere to this legislation and is not protecting a tenant's deposit may be ordered to repay the tenant three times the value of the deposit amount and will not be able to serve a Notice of Possession. When a Landlord takes a deposit from a tenant, the deposit must be protected in a government- authorised tenancy deposit scheme. The schemes:

Allow tenants to get all or part of their deposit back when they are entitled to it.
Make any disputes easier to resolve
Encourage tenants and Landlords to make a clear agreement from the start on the condition of the property

Inventory and Schedule of Condition

It is recommended that an Inventory and Schedule of Condition of the property, its contents, furniture, fittings and effects be prepared. This will be checked and agreed with you at the commencement of your tenancy by a designated professional inventory clerk.

It is important that you take care in agreeing the Inventory and Schedule of Condition at this stage as it will form the basis of any claim for damages, by your Landlord, at the end of the tenancy.

At the end of tenancy the Inventory and Schedule of Condition will be checked again. The cost of the drawing up of the inventory and check-in is normally borne by the Landlord. The cost of the check out is normally borne by the Tenant.  We strongly recommend that you are present at both the check-in and check-out.

Although ‘Chess Estates’ recommend to Landlords’ that a professional inventory should be carried, out they are not bound to do this by law. If a landlord does not present you with an inventory we suggest that you take pictures of the property on the day you move in and detail any damages. Place all pictures onto a non writable cd and send a copy to us and your landlord.

Rental Payments

All rent is payable in advance by standing order unless agreed otherwise. Please note that many Landlords request that the standing order payments should be made three days prior to your rent due date to allow time for clearance.

Should you experience any financial problems during the course of the tenancy it is essential that you contact us immediately if we are managing agents or your Landlord if the rent is payable to them.

Tenant's Obligations

You should be aware that responsibility for the property rests with the tenant during any tenancy. It is particularly important that any gas or electrical 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 systems.

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.

The Agent's Obligations

The obligations of ‘Chess Estates’ will vary depending on which of the following services we provide for the Landlord:

  • Let and Manage the property
  • Let the property and collection of the rent
  • Let the property only (Introductory agent only).

You will be advised which of the above apply prior to your tenancy commencing but should you need further details regarding a specific property please contact our offices.

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