1. What references will my new landlord need?
As part of our service, we will reference all prospective Tenants, using Blinc, one of the UKs leading referencing companies. Checks will include a reference from your previous landlord (if applicable), credit rating, employment checks etc. Most referencing is processed without issue, but if there is any problem, we will discuss this with you.
2. Who is responsible for contacting the utility companies after I move in?
You as the tenant are responsible for setting up accounts with the utility companies directly when you move into your property and also when you leave, taking care to provide meter readings at the beginning and end of the tenancy. Meter readings will be included in the inventory upon move in & move out.
3. How do I pay rent?
We request that you set up a monthly standing order with your bank. Prior to move in, we will provide you with a mandate form to complete with your own bank details and either hand it to your bank, or set up on-line, whichever is easier.
4. When will the rent leave my account?
If you are paying by standing order mandate the funds should leave your account 2 days prior to the rental due date in order to be in the recipients account on the due date (The due date is typically, although not always, the date on which you moved in).
5. What happens if my rent is paid late?
Any problems with rental payments, that may result in late payment, should be conveyed to Latham Smith if we are collecting your rent, or your landlord if you pay your rent directly to them. Any penalties for non payment or extended delays in rent being received will be detailed in your tenancy agreement.
6. How do I serve notice to vacate my property?
Notice would need to be served in accordance with your tenancy agreement. As a rule, if your tenancy is managed by your landlord you need to write directly to them . If Latham Smith manage your property, please inform us directly. Either way, please copy us in as we need to know the tenancy is ending so we can help you with the check out process and start the re-letting process for your landlord.
7. What penalties will I incur should I break my lease agreement early?
The primary liability is for rent until the end of the contract or its break clause point. If the landlord agrees to re-market the property and once a new tenant is found, then your liability will be reduced to covering the landlord’s commission and any other expenses from when the property is re-let. Payments would be calculated on a pro-rata basis for the unexpired term of the contract. Terms apply, so call us for more information if you need to.
8. How will my payments cease at the end of my tenancy?
You should contact your bank directly to cancel your standing order once the last payment has left your account. Latham Smith, nor your landlord can do this on your behalf and standing orders should not be confused with direct debits.
9. What should I do with the keys at the end of the tenancy?
Unless specific instructions are given by your landlord keys should be taken to our office by 3pm on your leaving date. Please ensure all sets are returned and that this happens on or before the last day of your tenancy. Please note that you will be liable for rent on a daily basis until the keys are returned. If you are meeting the inventory clerk the day after your tenancy ends, it can be agreed that you hold the keys until this meeting and hand them over to the clerk at the appointment time booked.
10. What expenditure should I expect at the end of the tenancy?
As an outgoing tenant typically your costs will be associated with professional cleaning & any damages to the property. Any discrepancies between the check in and check out may result in deductions from your deposit.
11. What is the Tenant Deposit Protection Scheme?
In most cases, your deposit will be protected by the DPS, Deposit Protection Scheme. As part of the Housing Act 2004 the Government introduced tenancy deposit protection for all assured shorthold tenancies (ASTs) in England and Wales where a deposit is taken. From April 6th 2007, all deposits paid under an AST should have been protected within 14 calendar days of receipt by the landlord. From 6th April 2012, deposits for all assured shorthold tenancies (ASTs) in England and Wales must now be protected within 30 calendar days of receipt by the landlord, this change is as a result of the Localism Bill 2011.
12. When is my deposit returned to me?
Once the check-out has been conducted, the property has been cleaned to a satisfactory standard and Latham Smith has received instructions regarding the deposit from the landlord, the money will be returned to your account, less any agreed deductions. This typically takes 10 working days and generally no more than 30 days.
13. How do I renew my contract after the first year?
We will contact you prior to the end of the tenancy once we have spoken to your landlord and received their instruction. If you wish to speed up this process, you should inform us 60 days prior to the end of your tenancy to allow enough time to arrange all the related administration.
14. Any other questions not covered in these FAQs?
Please do not hesitate to contact us should you have any queries regarding our services.