T & C’s

Viewings

Please take a look through our website to see if any properties or rooms suit what you are looking for. To book viewings please contact us through the website, email us confirming when you would be free for viewings and which house or houses you would be interested in viewing.

We will then contact you to arrange the viewing at a mutually convenient time. We cannot stress enough the importance of having your Whole Group available for viewings. Many times groups lose houses to others whilst waiting for the remainder of their group to view the property.

We need to given current tenants 24hrs Notice for access to a property. As you can appreciate you wouldn’t like to be suddenly disturbed by a group of people entering your house/room.

Please note; we give preference to Mixed Groups of Students, all Male or Female Only groups of students in the past we have experienced heavy wear/tear & responsibility/communication issues.

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We want you to enjoy your stay with us and be happy in your living environment. We have discovered through experience that groups who already know each other before moving in generally have a more harmonious living experience than those who don’t. Therefore we tend to give group bookings a higher priority than individual room requests.

Please note;  we will perform viewings with other students at the property you wish to reserve until all of your group have completed an application, paid the reservation fee and signed the contract. Majority male groups subject to a minimum £1000.00 Damage deposit. We don’t really offer one  double room to couples but may on a one-off occasion subject to one couple only &  their partner paying 50% rent also.

Guarantor and References

ALL students will be required to complete an application form and provide a Guarantor; who will be asked to sign a Letter of Guarantee, promising to underwrite any liabilities for which you do not pay. This would normally be a parent or relative living in the UK. If unable to provide this your rent for the whole term of the contract may be due.

Information on the Tenant Particulars form will be used to take references from past landlords and halls. When all checks and guarantees are complete the tenancy will be set-up.

Holding Payment(s)

A Holding payment will be made to Reserve your house/room and also covers our costs of marketing, viewings, processing applications etc.

We create the Agreement (once signed the payment forms part of the retainer), prepare the Inventory and check you In & eventually Out of the property, inform utility companies and council tax depts of the exempt tenancy. (After reserving a house and paying Any amounts upfront, if you change your mind they will Not be refunded unless you have sourced a suitable replacement tenant).

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Tenancy

Our properties are normally only let to groups of students on a joint tenancy agreement for at least a full 10-month year Sept-July inclusive. (Can start earlier than Sept or to remain after July through some or all of the summer by agreement). If anyone needs to move out before the end of the tenancy it would be his or her responsibility to find a replacement or continue to pay rent.

Retainer

If you want to secure a house for next year as a new tenancy, then you will all need to pay a non-refundable retainer during the summer (usually July and August) rather than sign a 52 week contract you will save by a reduced contract term. The maximum retainer period will be for 4 weeks.

If you are to hold a property until the beginning of the academic year, then a summer retainer also ensures that the property will not be leased out to anyone prior to your arrival and we may wish to use the time to undertake maintenance work.

If you want to continue a tenancy from one year to the next, a retainer can be paid during a period of up to two months when the property will be semi-occupied and available for maintenance work. You may be required to return your keys during the retainer period and we will do an inventory and condition check. Any damage will be assessed and corrected during the retainer period.

During the retainer period, you may wish to store property as long as any necessary maintenance work can still be carried out.

Beware of Landlords who don’t charge a summer retainer but let out their properties over summer to international students etc which can lead to a damaged/unclean property or worse; they won’t leave! Back to back tenancies are not good practice and show properties not being maintained properly.

Note; the retainer fee is to secure a property for you over the summer period and does not entitle you to early occupancy of a property. The retainer fee is set at circa 59% of the weekly rent, if you wish to have early access to the property during what would ordinarily be the retainer period then you will need to request this months in advance and you will be advised of the earliest available occupancy after all maintenance has been completed. You will be charged the Full Rent from the date that you fully-occupy the property.

Rent

Rent is payable termly in part arrears/advance (16+wk instalments).
The agreed weekly rental is for your room and the share of the house with other tenants
Payment options are: -
By 1 payment or Termly at the beginning of each semester by 3 post dated cheques collected at start of tenancy.
International students need to pay 48 weeks rent in advance unless you can provide a UK based Guarantor.

NO SMOKING OR PETS

All our properties are NON-SMOKING and NO PETS allowed (fish/reptiles ok within your room only). Any evidence of this and you would Forfeit the full amount of any deposit paid.

Insurance

The houses are all insured for the buildings themselves and the furnishings and equipment supplied by us. You are strongly advised to obtain insurance for your own personal property against fire, theft and other losses. In some cases your parents contents insurance may cover you whilst you are away from home as a student, please check carefully. Most bedrooms are fitted with secure locks and you will be asked to agree to us holding duplicates of all house and room keys. You should also inform us of any period when the house will be left unoccupied for more than 2 weeks, as our insurance policy requires us to check empty houses on a regular basis. We recommend Endsleigh who offer good Student policies.

Gas & Electric

We provide the utility companies each persons name for the account and the tenancy agreement holds you all liable to pay for fuel used and or above allowances. We have changed most houses over to smart pre-pay meters which be can read & topped-up remotely. Gas/Elec Inc tenancies are subject to a circa £1500.00-£2000.00 (dependant on house size) usage/contribution and commences from 1st September whilst over seeing potential misuse. Please Note; All Inc tenancies are not a green-light to have the heating on 24/7 and or use for the purpose of drying clothing as we may have to control boiler access if this occurs.

Council Tax

Students are Exempt from payment of Council Tax and the Council will write and ask for copies of your student registration details. Be aware that if there are any non-students on the tenancy, the council will charge 75% of the full tax on the house when there is one non-student and the full tax if there are 2 or more. Also the council can hold all tenants jointly liable for payment (not just the non-students).

Repairs/Lock-outs

We have a Repair Protocol and make every effort to complete your repair as swiftly as possible on occasion there may be a delay in completing the repair if the parts are not in stock. If any repairs are required in your house due to malicious damage or as a direct result of negligence, we will not be held responsible for any delays in completing such repairs. In the event that you lock yourself out of your room, please be aware that we do not hold any spare keys for bedrooms. If this occurs you will be responsible for arranging and paying directly to the Locksmith to open your room.

Key(s) Bond

key(s) bond covers the cost of a potential callout for a locksmith etc to change your room locks/keys/door if for any reason during the tenancy you lose your keys, damage your room door or do not return your allocated keys.

House Spec/Kit

Any game consoles/games, pool tables, wi-fi routers, sky digi boxes, dvd players, TV’s etc are property of the house and are to remain insitu upon vacating. If for any reason are damaged, broken and or due to your negligence stolen you will be liable for new replacements and will not receive any refund of any bond in place for these items.

Parking

Certain areas of Preston especially the City centre is Residents Parking only so you will need to apply for  a permit via the link below;

http://www.lancashire.gov.uk/roads-parking-and-travel/parking/residents-parking-permit.aspx

 

Dropping out BEFORE you move in;

If you find you feel you may need to leave early, this may happen at specific points: Dropping out before you move in, Dropping out of Uni after you move or Dropping out of friendship with current housemates.

If, having signed a Contract to rent a house a student is nevertheless unable to move in/stay (for whatever reason), you are still legally responsible for rent for the duration of the Contract (in most cases 1st Sept – 30th July of the following year) or until a replacement tenant is found.

We do not want to charge tenants for unoccupied rooms. We therefore recommend you search for a replacement tenant as soon as you decide you are not going to move in. Please remember that the later you leave the decision, the more difficult it will be to find a substitute tenant. If you are part of a group, tell the rest of your group ASAP, one of them might have a friend who would be more than happy to take your place. Also this is the best option for everyone as it likely to be someone known to all of you! Ask around your friends if anyone is looking for a house share in a property such as yours. But the longer you leave it the harder it becomes for a replacement to be found.

Once you have someone interested in taking over your tenancy, ask the prospective housemate to contact us and we will arrange all the paperwork.

When a new housemate agrees to rent the house, and when the remaining tenants are happy with the new housemate we would organise to sign the Deed of Assignment. The rest of the group must be happy, as it is they who will be sharing their home with this new tenant. (Age, Study year etc is vital).

Do remember that if, after promising to take the house, this substitute tenant does not proceed to sign the Deed of Assignment, the original tenant remains liable for rent.

Dropping out AFTER you move in;

Should you find that you are unable to reside at your student house until the end of your tenancy agreement ends (in most cases 1st Sept – 31st July of the following year), students are still responsible for paying rent until the end of the tenancy (i.e. 31st July) or until a replacement is found.

We know that students are not normally wealthy and we do not want tenants to be unnecessarily burdened. Therefore, if students feel they need to leave the house then the original and/or remaining tenants must find a replacement student tenant to take over the responsibility for the remainder of the tenancy period. The agreement is Joint & Several so you are all responsible for the payment of the rent but it is only fair the majority of the effort to find a replacement housemate is made by the tenant wishing to leave.

Whilst the responsibility for finding substitute housemates lies mainly with the tenant(s), tenants can however, ask uni mates and current housemates, to assist in the search for substitute housemates.

Students may decide to leave a tenancy for any reason:-10% of students drop out of University during the Academic Year. Some continuing students leave their courses due to incompatibility. Some continuing students leave purely for personal private reasons.

Leaving before the end of your contract can be a very difficult experience. However, you must remember that you remain responsible for your liabilities, under the Contract you have entered into. However by following the advice below you are more likely to find a substitute tenant.

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As soon as you think you may need to leave the property, start looking for a replacement. The sooner you act the more likely it is you will resolve the issue. As the Academic Year progresses the less likely it will be that any student will move.

If you leave your decision to later into the Academic year, the harder it will be to find a replacement as students do not usually disrupt their living arrangements during an Academic Year. Moving house for some is recognized as one of life’s most stressful events. So students will only endure this if it is necessary, worthwhile and will not interfere with revision and examinations.

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Notes;

Putting every effort into finding a replacement is a top priority for Everyone concerned.

Remember, the sooner the replacement moves in (after signing the tenancy agreement) the sooner you are able to stop paying rent.

Once a replacement is found we will need to have the authorisation from all of the other housemates that this person can join them on the tenancy agreement.

We do not like to source random replacement tenants on your behalf as it will cause problems with the make-up of the house as past experiences have shown but we will advertise the room available.

A special note for replacement groups who have a break down in relations;

We have also experienced in the past that where there has been a breakdown in relations between housemates, they have felt that they are justified in making this process difficult. The danger of doing this could shift the responsibility of the rent due by the person to the remaining named tenants! Tenancy law is a complex matter and there is no point in wasting efforts in trying to prove a point or challenge legislation. It’s best to use those efforts and energy in a positive manner in finding a replacement.

 

House Maintenance & Safety

Fire: In the event of a fire vacate the House as quickly as possible, and dial 999. Do not return to the property until it is safe to do so. Candles, oil burners, chip pans and deep fat fryers are not permitted. Tampering with smoke detectors, fire doors and other fire fighting equipment is a criminal offence and may lead to a large fine. Take care when cooking to avoid setting the smoke alarms off.

Security: Never let strangers into your property. Always lock your door and windows when you are all not in the House.

Noise: You must remember that other housemates may want to sleep or study. The volume of stereos should be kept down at all times and should not be audible outside your room between 23:00hrs and 8:00hrs. Musical instruments should not be played in the home.

Repairs: Report all problems via email.

Keys: Remove any tags from your keys that could be used to identify your Room. Any lost keys must be reported. Keys will be replaced at a charge of £50. When permanently vacating your Room your keys should be returned. Failure to return your keys may result in a continuing Charge for your Room and your key.

Cleaning: You are responsible for maintaining the cleanliness of your Room and Communal Areas. You will be charged extra if we are required to employ cleaning services for your property. We do have template Cleaning Rotas which we are happy to supply if you feel that this will be helpful for your home.

Decoration: of your Home is Not Permitted.

Posters: A notice board is provided in your Room, posters may be attached to the notice board but only with drawing pins. You must Not Fix posters to Walls. Posters may be attached to doors but only with WhiteTac. Failure to follow these instructions could result in a Charge for redecorating your Room.

Smoking: is Not Permitted within the house. If you smoke outside please dispose of cigarette butts discreetly.

Parties: are Not Permitted.

Inspection: Your house will be Inspected twice over the course of your tenancy, please see attached Appendix for repair or renewal costs for damages/breakages.

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Guests: No other person is allowed to occupy your Room whether you are present or absent.

Rental payments: entitle you to stay in this house for the dates stipulated on your contract. If you require accommodation beyond this time you must contact us to arrange.

Pets: dogs & cats are Prohibited.

Bikes: must Not be stored in the Hallway or Stairwell because they obstruct Fire Exits.

Laundry: Please do not overload the Washing machine and use the Washing Line in the rear yard for the drying of clothes. In the event of drying clothes in your Room please Open Windows to provide ventilation to avoid the formation of condensation etc.