Finding a property to rent
Whether you have rented before or this is your first time when you rent a home there is a lot to think about.
If the rent is less than £25,000 per year and you do not live with the Landlord the tenancy automatically becomes an Assured Shorthold Tenancy (AST). An AST usually lasts for 6 to 12 months unless you agree a fixed term for the tenancy in advance with the Landlord.
What happens at the end of my tenancy?
When the fixed term of the tenancy has expired, the landlord is able to gain back possession of the property provided they give two months written notice to the tenant. In addition if you owe at least 2 months or 8 weeks rent the landlord can ask you to leave.
What can I afford?
Before you even look at a property work out what you can afford by looking at what your basic outgoings are likely to be. For instance:
£_______ Monthly rent plus tenant fees
£_______ The costs of getting your references
£_______ Inventory and tenancy agreement costs
£_______ The deposit and any maintenance costs
£_______ Council Tax
£_______ Water rates, gas, electricity and telephone charges
£_______ TV Licence
£_______ Insurance for your belongings
Role of the Letting Agent
Most people find a place to rent by looking in the local press, on property websites or local agents. However if you find a property to rent it will be managed either directly by the Landlord or more usually by a letting agent.
Remember the Letting Agent is acting for the landlord and has no contractual duty to you. Check if the agent is 'sole agent' if not other agents may be trying to let the same property.