As we begin a new academic year, freshmen all over the world are starting an exciting journey into adulthood – filled with new friendships, adventures as well as a fresh-found sense of independence. This new stage of life can be very exciting and can also be extremely daunting and students can be vulnerable to mistreatment from landlords if they are living independently for the first time – especially if they’re not aware of their rights. However, there are Five Step Guide To Renting As A Student t In UK. Jackson Lees Group is often aware that students aren’t aware of the laws put in place in order to protect them and their financing. From deposit to unmet maintenance as well as energy efficiency. Below is the five-step guide put together by the company to help students who are renting in the UK.
A Five Step Guide To Renting As A Student In UK
Protecting your deposit
Often times, the first hurdle is getting your deposit, so ensure you’re familiar and aware of the governmnet-backed scheme which the landlord or letting agency will be using to protect your deposit. A tenancy deposit scheme (TDS) is highly compulsory by law, making sure your money is in safe hands and will be returned to you if there are no disputes at the end of your tenancy. If you’re entering a tenancy contract and there is no provision for TDS, Jackson Lees Group recommends that students should either insist on the use of a scheme, or simply look elsewhere to avoid chaos.
Making sure your letting agent is providing what’s legally owed to you
The Homes Act, which came into force in March this year, provided a significant boost to tenant’s rights – good news for students and renters everywhere! The act states that, landlords and letting agents are required by law to make sure the home is fit for human habitation from the beginning and also for the duration of tenancy.
If your landlord is not maintaining the property, leaving it unsafe, unhealthy and at risk of causing you serious harm, you have the right to take direct legal action in the courts for breach of contract. Here are just a few of the issues you may be able to take legal action over: if the building is in a bad condition and has been neglected; if there’s a serious problem with damp; if the building is unstable; it has a safe layout; there’s not enough natural light; there’s not enough ventilation; there is a problem with the supply of hot or cold water; there are problems with the drainage or the lavatories; it’s difficult to prepare and cook food or wash up.
Property Energy Efficiency
If your property’s energy efficiency is impacting and drastically increasing your household bills, Jackson Lees Group suggest researching the grading on your EPC. As of 1 April, landlords renting out a property with poor energy efficiency ratings have been doing so illegally. Private rental properties must be rated a minimum of E; if not, you have the right to take legal action against your landlord. This information should be available to you on the Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) provided by your landlord.
Recognising your responsibilities
It’s important to highlight the responsibilities of the tenant so you know what is and is not your burden. To ensure you’re fulfilling your requirements as a tenant, here’s a list of some of the most important points; the rent; a refundable deposit; energy, gas, electric and water bills if they are not included in the rent; payments for utilities such as council tax and broadband; payments to end a tenancy early, when requested by the tenant; and a default fee for late payment of rent or for lost keys if this has been specified in the tenancy agreement.
Student Council Tax
Full-time university students are not required by law to pay council tax. A property is exempt from council tax if it is wholly occupied by full-time students. Should you have disputes about council tax you know you don’t owe, Jackson Lees Group would encourage students to pursue legal help. These Five Step Guide To Renting As A Student In UK will be very useful to freshmen students who wish to study in UK and those who are already admitted in UK universities.