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Top 10 Tips for a Happy Tenancy

Posted on Thursday, 30 January 2014 11:34AM by Artful Lodger
Sheffield is experiencing more than ever as an increase of students face competition from those in their 30′s and 40′s who can no longer afford to buy. There can be many positive aspects to renting, but it also has its fair share of downfalls. So if you’re looking to become a tenant in Sheffield then follow these top tips to ensure that you end up a happy tenant.

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Beware of hidden fees
Before you sign any rental agreements, make sure you’re aware of any potential fees so you can query any costs you’re unhappy with. Unscrupulous landlords have a tendency for hidden fees, for an example carrying out unnecessary credit checks.

Read the Small Print
Every contract agreement is different so make sure you understand exactly what type of tenancy agreement you are signing up for and what will be expected from you. Find out exactly what you’re responsible for, including bills, pet allowances and the amount of notice that will be required when you leave.

Tenancy Deposit Protection
Genuine letting agents and private landlords in England must use a tenancy deposit protection scheme approved by the government. Finding the right letting agent can be difficult in Sheffield without system like Rentify , but there are still some quality agencies out there that can help you find a good landlord with details of TDP so you stay in the know regarding money.

Additional help

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For students, getting guarantors help is common, particularly help form parents. However, if you’ve signed a joint agreement with other housemates and they fail to pay the rent, the guarantor will be held responsible. Limiting the liability of the guarantor is a possible option with some contracts but needs to be determined in the early stages.

Personal Bills
For those who have never rented before, it can be easy to forget bills that aren’t included in your letting agreement. Remember to include other utility bills like electricity, groceries and you’re TV license so that you can really get an accurate account of your living costs.
 
Make an Inventory Checklist

Tenancy is rife with horror stories about property damage so it’s wise to write an accurate inventory list of everything in the property and the condition it’s in. Taking photographs is also helpful, especially if the property is furnished or part furnished. This way you can prove you’re not responsible for any damage caused in the future.

Insurance and Security
If you’re planning to rent with lots of people your landlord will need a license for a house of multiple occupation. HMO landlords have additional legal responsibilities and should be registered with the council. Additionally, make sure that your possessions are insured either on your own policy.

Housemates
Living with other people can be difficult to adjust to. Creating a ‘housemate’s agreement’ at the beginning of your tenancy will ensure that everyone pulls their weight equally.

Keep a Record
Keep every records of any correspondence between you and your landlord, including receipts and copies of your bills.

Leaving
When you leave your tenancy you’re original deposit should be refunded within ten days provided you and the landlord agree. Generally, no charges should arise for general wear over a period of time but it’s always wise to give everything a thorough clean before the final inspection to avoid unnecessary cleaning fees.

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