Tenant(s) Fees, Information and Terms & Conditions.
At Samuel Estates, we take immense pride in providing all our applicants and existing tenants with a detailed and transparent list of all fees and charges that may be incurred during the application process and throughout a tenancy. All of our current fees and charges are shown inclusive of VAT at the standard rate of 20%.
Holding Fee, References & Right to Rent Checks
After an offer has been accepted by a Landlord, which will be subject to contract and receipt of satisfactory references, it is normal for the prospective tenant(s) to place with Samuel Estates a holding fee as a sign of their good intent. This will be the equivalent of 1 weeks rent.
Samuel Estates will, in turn stop marketing the property while the referencing process is carried out. All prospective tenant(s) will be asked to provide the following documents within five days of their offer being accepted. Failure to provide these documents within this time frame will result in Samuel Estates re-marketing the property.
Should the prospective tenant(s) decide not to proceed with the tenancy or if a satisfactory credit assessment and references are not obtained, the tenant(s) will forfeit this holding fee.
Should the Landlord decide not to proceed the holding fee will be refunded. If the tenancy goes ahead the holding fee will be added to your rental account and deducted from the balance of monies due prior to the start of the tenancy.
Samuel Estates reserve the right to use a professional tenant referencing agency to assess potential tenant(s) (and Guarantor if required). Each named tenant (and Guarantor if required) will be required to complete an application form. The tenant referencing company will ask you for details of your employer, bank, previous Landlord and a character referee. Your references will be shown to the Landlord or an interested party acting on their behalf.
We are required to undertake document checks to establish whether each named tenant has the right to rent a property in accordance with the Immigration Act 2014. We must obtain original versions of one or more acceptable documents and check the documents validity in the presence of the holder before the start of the tenancy.
The initial payment will consist of the holding fee (equivalent to 1 weeks rent).
Payment may be made by any of the following methods:
Contract fee, balance of deposit and First month’s rent
Provided we receive satisfactory credit assessment and references, and approval from the landlord, we will proceed to drafting up a tenancy agreement which will be sent to the tenant(s) for review. At this point we will request that the tenant(s) pay the balance of the deposit (which is equal to 5 weeks rent) and the first month’s rent. The first month’s rent must be shown as ‘cleared funds’ in our client account at least 3 working days prior to the start of the tenancy or the move in date will be moved back.
The deposit of an amount equal to, not more than five weeks’ rental is required and, in most cases, willbe held by Samuel Estates as Stakeholder. Samuel Estates is a member of the Tenancy Deposit Scheme which operates to safeguard your deposit and to ensure that any dispute over the return of the deposit after the tenancy has ended is resolved swiftly, inexpensively and impartially. Further details are available www.tenancydepositscheme.com
Normally payable monthly or quarterly in advance to Samuel Estates. We will ask you to set up a standing order for all future rental payments and we will ask you to provide proof of this. If there is more than one person living in the property and sharing the rent between you, we will ask you to pay the rent from one account only and for a standing order to be set up from this one account. Please note that this standing order must be set up to leave your account (or joint account) 3 working days before the rent due date in order for it to arrive on time.
Late payment of Rental Interest Charges
All tenants are required to provide proof that a standing order has been set up to pay the monthly rent (from one account) prior to the commencement of the tenancy.
If the rent has not been paid and is more than 14 days overdue, tenants will be charged interest. Interest is payable from the date on which the Rent was due until the date on which the Rent is actually paid. The interest rate will be 3% above the Bank of England Base Rate. If your rent is paid late on more than two occasions, this will be noted on your account and will result in a negative reference at the end of your tenancy.
Term of the tenancy
Usually a minimum of 2 years initially with any options for renewal and/or release clauses to be negotiated.
Inventory check-in and check-out
An inventory check-in will normally be carried out at a pre-arranged time on the day the tenancy commences with an independent inventory clerk booked by Samuel Estates. It is strongly recommended that the tenant(s) are present both for the check-in and check-out to avoid any disputes at the end of the tenancy. You must inform us as soon as possible if you must change an appointment in order to avoid cancellation charges.
The tenant(s) are responsible for the gas, electricity, water, telephone, TV licence and council tax bills for the duration of the tenancy. Either your Landlord or Samuel Estates will contact the utility companies (apart from British Telecom) on your behalf and will instruct them to transfer the accounts into your name at the start of the tenancy. However, you should also contact the suppliers to make sure this has been done. Please do not arrange for any of the utilities to be transferred to a different supplier without letting us know. British Telecom will not accept our instructions on your behalf so please call them on Freephone 150 to arrange to have the telephone service transferred into your name.
The Tenant is responsible for insuring their own contents. Please be advised that the Landlord’s policy does not cover the tenant(s) possessions and you are strongly advised to insure your belongings with a reputable insurer.
Change of tenant
If a Tenant in a shared property wishes to be replaced by a new tenant during the tenancy (subject to the Landlord’s consent and receipt of satisfactory references) a charge of £50 including VAT will be payable by the Tenant for issuing a Deed of Assignment. Payment is due before the new tenancy agreement or deed of assignment is signed by the landlord. Please note that any new tenants will be required to be referenced.
Before agreeing to carry out a change of sharer, we must have the landlord’s permission to do so. Please note that the landlord reserves the right not to allow a change of sharer to take place.
Should the tenants then decide to terminate the tenancy early, the tenant(s) will be liable to refund the landlord any fees any re-letting costs or commission incurred by the Landlord if the Tenant vacates the Premises early apart from or according to a break clause.
At the commencement of the tenancy we will advise you who will be responsible for the day to day management of the property (this is not always Samuel Estates) and provide you with the relevant contact details. Where we are not managing the property we are unable to arrange any repairs or maintenance on the Landlord’s behalf, nor can we control how quickly repairs will be carried out. Where we manage the property it may be necessary, in some instances, for us to obtain the Landlord’s consent before arranging a repair.
Health and safety advice
Everyday safety procedures:
Smoke alarms & Carbon Monoxide detectors
Your property will have the required amount of smoke and carbon monoxide alarms (if necessary). It is your responsibility to ensure that the alarms are in working order at the start of the tenancy and to advise us immediately if not, in order to have them replaced. Please check the batteries in the first instance, ensure that during the course of your tenancy the alarms are tested regularly.
If you smell gas:
We always strongly recommend to all tenant(s), regardless of the type of property, that they take simple measures to protect the property from possible security risks. Please see below a list of recommendations: