FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Whose responsibility is the payment of council tax and utilities?
In most cases, the tenant is responsible for the payment of council tax and all bills at the property with the exception of ground rent and maintenance charges (in the case of flats/apartments).
How much do I need to earn to be accepted for a property?
You must earn either on your own or jointly at least 30 times the monthly rent of the property you are proposing to rent. If for example, the monthly rent of the property you are interested in is £550.00, then a combined annual income of 30 x £550 = £16,500 gross annual salary is required.
Are Pets allowed?
Generally pets are not allowed unless the landlord has given written consent.
Is smoking allowed?
Generally smoking is not allowed unless the landlord has given written consent. In the case of flats/apartments, you will not be allowed to smoke in the internal communal areas either, only outside.
I don’t earn enough! Is there any way of renting the property I am interested in?
Yes there is. You can either pay all the rent of the tenancy term at the beginning of the tenancy or you can provide a guarantor. The guarantor would need to earn a minimum of 30 times the monthly rent and be in full time employment or be able to prove they have independent means.
What is a Guarantor?
A guarantor is expected to guarantee paying the rent to the landlord if the tenant, for any reason, does not pay the rent. The guarantor must be aware they are standing as guarantor not only for the initial tenancy term but for the whole rent and any bills outstanding.
Can the landlord or Redstones come into the property anytime they want to?
Generally no but there are exceptions, for example in an emergency or with a minimum of 24 hours notice from the landlord or managing agent to inspect the property.
Are my personal belongings covered by the landlord’s insurance?
The landlord’s contents insurance will not cover your personal belongings. We strongly recommend you arrange adequate insurance to cover any personal items you take to the property.
What does joint and several liabilities mean?
If you take up a tenancy with another person or persons, you are then taking a tenancy with joint and several liabilities. Each tenant has then taken on the liability of the other tenant. This means for example, if there are two people as joint tenants and one of them does not pay their share of the rent or leaves the property early without the landlord’s agreement, the other is responsible for paying the full rent.
Can I decorate the property?
Only with written permission from the landlord and it must be to a good standard of finish.
Do I need to pay for a TV license?
If you have a television set at the property, whether it is provided by the landlord or your own, it is your responsibility to purchase a TV license.
Can I install cable or a satellite dish?
Most rented properties do not have cable of satellite installations and most leasehold properties do not allow satellite dishes to be erected. You must obtain the landlord’s permission in writing, if you wish to install cable or erect a satellite dish.
How long does it take for references?
Once we have received your reservation holding deposit, a completed application form and the permission from the landlord to proceed, then we will require at least 3 - 5 working days, however individual circumstances differ and it may take longer.
What do I need for identification and proof of residency?
· Passport and/or photo UK driving license
· Utility bill i.e. council tax demand or gas/electricity bill (less than three months old)
· Or at least two up to date bank statements.
· Or minimum of two most recent pay slips or Inland Revenue verification of tax paid.
· Or if you are starting new employment – a copy of contract of employment.
How long will it take to get my deposit back?
Assuming the property has been left clean and tidy (i.e. the same condition as when you took the property on, excepting for reasonable wear and tear) and none of the fixtures and fittings are broken, damaged or missing, then Redstones aims to return the deposit to you within 7 days. Please however, allow for up to 14 days.
Can I have guests to stay?
It is perfectly reasonable to have guests to stay for short periods. Guests staying a long time however, will constitute a breach of the tenancy agreement. Please Note: Tenants are liable for any damage caused by their guests.
Who pays for appliances that breakdown?
If it is determined by the relevant appliance engineer that the fault was caused by the tenant then it is you who will have to pay for the repair. If the fault is due to normal wear and tear the landlord will have to pay.
What type of tenancy agreement is used?
Unless we advise you otherwise, your tenancy will be an Assured Shorthold Tenancy under the Housing Act 1988 (as amended by the Housing Act 1996).
Your tenancy agreement will have a set start date (the day you check in) and a set end date (the day you check out). Neither you nor your landlord can terminate the agreement early unless there is a breach of the terms of the agreement.
How do I end my tenancy?
To end the tenancy at the end of the term either you or the landlord should give notice in writing to the other. The notice must be given to expire on a rent payment day. Under the Housing Act, the landlord must give a minimum of two months notice.
As a tenant, the notice you are required to give will vary depending on the agreement you enter into. Listed below are the types of agreements and written notices required;
Tenancy for 6 or 12 months – one month written notice.
Periodic tenancy – Normally one month written notice (can vary depending on rent payment period).
Notice must be given to expire on a rent payment day.
What is a periodic tenancy?
When you start your tenancy it will normally be for a fixed term usually 6 or 12 months (an agreed fixed term) during which time both you and the landlord are contractually bound. Once the agreed fixed term of the tenancy has come to the end of its term, and you have not received notice to quit, the tenancy automatically becomes a periodic tenancy. This is based on the rent payment period, weekly, monthly, quarterly etc. The periodic tenancy will then continue from one rent period to another on exactly the same terms as the original agreement until either you or the landlord gives notice.
Once I am a tenant, who do I contact with any maintenance or account queries?
If Redstones DOES NOT manage your property then you will need to contact your landlord directly. (Your landlord contact details can be found on the front page of your tenancy agreement).
If Redstones DOES manage your property then you can contact us either by:
Telephone: 0845 226 2833
Fax: 0870 134 0216