An application fee of £225.00 must be paid, which covers all applicants for the property, before the application can be processed. An additional £50.00 must be paid in respect of each guarantor necessary. These fees are normally non-refundable once the application is being processed.
PLEASE NOTE THAT UNLIKE MOST OTHER AGENTS WE DO NOT CHARGE ANY SUBSEQUENT FEES FOR INVENTORIES, CHECK-IN, RENEWAL OR CHECK-OUT.
PROPERTY INFORMATION & SELECTION
Once you have identified a property that might interest you, contact our friendly reception staff in any of our three offices who will arrange an appointment to view. If you have a more specific idea of your requirements, we can produce a personalised list that can be viewed in our letting centre, e-mailed to you or printed and posted that day. You can also register your needs on our web sites at www.payne-cov.com, www.rightmove.co.uk or www.zoopla.co.uk . We give a brief description of what each property has to offer but you will naturally wish to inspect to decide if a property meets your requirements. Indeed, we are unable to accept applications until all parties have viewed the property. If you have any specific needs, please discuss these before viewing to avoid unnecessary visits. In particular, the degree of any furnishings included in the letting will vary between properties and whilst properties are usually viewed with the contents that will be included present (apart from when existing tenants occupy), landlords are sometimes willing to add or remove items to suit. Any specific concerns or requirements should be referred to us before applying.
In most instances, we will need to meet you at the property at a pre-arranged time, which usually needs to be between 9.20am and 5.00pm Mondays to Fridays, or 9.20am to 1.00pm on Saturdays. We aim to be as prompt as possible but please be aware that traffic and other delays can occur and we would ask for your understanding if our representative were running a little late. If no one has arrived after say 10 minutes, you are welcome to contact our office to check on the situation. We also recognise that you may be delayed and we are usually able to wait for 10 minutes or so but please be aware that we will usually have another appointment to attend 30 minutes after yours. In these instances, please try and notify our office.
Once you have viewed the property that interests you, you will be required to complete tenancy application forms relevant to the personal circumstances of the proposed tenant(s). From these we need to take up references in order to satisfy our client as to your suitability as tenant. The extent and depth of enquiry will vary dependant on the individual landlord’s requirements, but all applicants will need to complete a form to be submitted to Rent4sure , who undertake enquiries and assessment on our behalf. They are a reputable national tenant referencing company who adhere to strict standards. The forms can be collected from our office or posted to you, but if you prefer, they can usually be e-mailed to you to enable you to complete and return. Forms will generally need to be completed by each proposed occupant over 18 years of age. We are unable to consider anyone for a tenancy that is not 18 at the time of application. It is critical that all appropriate sections of the form are completed; especially contact details for existing/previous landlords and employers. Failure to do so will cause delays in processing beyond our control. In many situations, applicants will be asked to nominate a guarantor who will also need to be referenced and will have to agree to meet your obligations in respect of the tenancy in the event of your default. The guarantor will need to be employed with a verifiable income above a certain level, dependent upon the level of your commitment. Any adverse credit history such as County Court Judgements must be declared as failure to do so will result in the application automatically being rejected.
In fairness to all, we try and give priority to the earliest applicants and once forms have been submitted and the fee paid, the property will be regarded as under offer pending approval of your application and withdrawn from our listing. However, in some circumstances, landlords will want us to continue to offer the property but if this is the case, you will be informed and kept advised of developments. Applications are normally processed within a few days but this very much depends on the accuracy and detail of information that you supply and how quickly responses are received from your employers, landlords etc. We reserve the right to re-offer the property to others if there are exceptional delays in this process, and if your application is subsequently declined, the fee cannot normally be refunded.
LHA (HOUSING BENEFIT) CLAIMANTS
Some of our clients are prepared to consider tenants who will be claiming Local Housing Allowance. Due to benefit limits, these properties are generally at the lower end of the monthly rental scale although if applicants are able to show genuine means by which they can meet any shortfall between the rent and the actual benefit that they will receive, they may well be able to proceed. Completed application forms are still required and a guarantor will need to be nominated and referenced also. Further details can be obtained from the Housing Office in Spire House, New Union Street, Coventry or the relevant local authority if the property is outside the city.
SETTING UP THE TENANCY
Once an application has been accepted, we will liaise between you and the landlord to determine a date when your tenancy can start and after preparation of the Tenancy Agreement, you will be advised of the initial payment that will be needed. Subject to the property being available, you will normally be required to commence within two weeks of approval of your application. We must stress that where a current tenant occupies the property, the start of your tenancy may have to be delayed if that tenant fails to vacate the property when they had previously indicated or if it is not handed over in acceptable condition. As these events are totally beyond the control of the landlord or ourselves, we cannot accept responsibility for costs that you may suffer as a result of any delay, although we would normally refund your application fee if you have to withdraw in these circumstances.
You should be aware that your liability under the tenancy will be “joint and several” if there is more than one applicant. This is a legal term which means that all tenants named on the agreement are equally liable to meet the rent and other obligations of the tenancy, even if it is one of their co-tenants in default. You should only enter into such an agreement if you are sure that you are prepared to accept this responsibility. You are also committed to the tenancy for the full initially agreed period and will be liable under it even if you vacate before the agreed end date. Also, if one person leaves their liability continues, even if others remain, until the tenancy is properly ended.
Rents are as quoted in our listing and will generally be payable calendar monthly, due in advance on the first day of each month. If you take over part way through a month, an apportioned amount will be calculated as the rent due from the start date to the end of that calendar month although you will need to pay at least one full month of rent at commencement. If you take over in the last 10 days of a month, you may be asked to pay the rent for the whole of the following month at commencement.
SECURITY DEPOSIT (or BOND)
You will also be required to pay a Security Deposit or Bond at the start of the tenancy. This is usually £200.00 more than the amount of the monthly rent (e.g. £450.00 rent = £650.00 deposit). We normally hold this in the capacity of Stakeholder for the duration of the tenancy in our Client’s Account in accordance with RICS Members’ Accounts Regulations. The deposit will also be protected and handled in accordance with the rules of The Dispute Service Limited, a government approved body under the Housing Act 2006, of which we are members. Neither party to the tenancy will be entitled to any interest on the deposit and any interest accruing will belong to the stakeholder.
Unless otherwise stated, the rent will not include charges for gas, electricity or water, nor any Council Tax due for the period of the tenancy. These will be your own responsibility. We will notify the appropriate companies and local authority at the start of the tenancy of the change of occupancy, but you will need to contact them yourself to set up payment arrangements.