“I’m Renting for the first time and not sure what I need to do?”
If you have never rented before and suddenly find yourself in between a house sale and purchase or looking to rent permanently it can be a daunting process. The above question is one that I get asked regularly
So with this in mind I have based my latest blog around what you can expect from the rental process?
1. Timescale – You want to start looking for a property approx 6 weeks before you want to move. Agents can only hold a property for up to a month usually so you don’t want to set your heart on something too far in advance.
2. Holding fee – Letting agents will ask for a holding fee in order to take the property off the market for you. This is non-refundable once the referencing process has started but refundable if the landlord declines your application. If you are selling your house you risk losing this if you apply for something before your sale has exchanged. It varies amongst agents. At homes4harrogate I take £200 up front and this comes off your total invoice.
3. References – Agents will conduct references including credit checks, employers’ reference and current landlord reference (if applicable). They can take anywhere from 1-7 days to complete depending on how quickly your referees respond. As a guide, you need to earn approx 2.5 times the annual rent (3 times for a guarantor, and your guarantor must be based in the UK).
4. Tenancy agreements – Everyone over the age of 18 must be named on the tenancy agreement whether they are contributing towards the rent or not. So if you have adult children or a partner who doesn’t work, they will still need to go on the tenancy agreement. The only exception is children who are at university and only stay at the property during holiday time.
5. Pets – Not all landlords accept pets, I would advise mentioning your pet when arranging a viewing to prevent disappointment. If a pet is allowed, expect a carpet cleaning clause in your agreement.
6. Repairs – Who do you call if your boiler stops working or there is a leak from the roof? Well the good news is, that as a tenant this isn’t your responsibility to fix. When you find a property, you like you need to ask the letting agent who will be managing it. Some landlords are local and like to look after it themselves or sometimes they will use an agent. It is always worth knowing who you will be dealing with before signing on the dotted line.
If you have any further questions please don’t hesitate to call me on 01423 529250 or email firstname.lastname@example.org and I will be happy to help.