Help & Advice for Tenants

Securing references: How to be the model tenant

If you are living in rented property, there is a good chance that at some point you will move on to a new house. When you do, you will probably find that you need a reference from your current landlord. A poor reference could actually lead to you being in a situation where you are unable to secure another property. This is a terrifying possibility - so you should do everything you can to ensure that when you leave your current house, you do so on good terms with your landlord.

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Mortgage vs. renting: Which wins?

When it comes to paying for somewhere to live, most adults have two options: taking out a mortgage or paying rent.

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Tenants' rights: What are the legal differences around the UK?

As with countless other industries, the lettings market has different regulations in Scotland as it does in England and Wales. These vary from the largely unrecognisable to the slightly-tweaked. Either way, it's advisable for both landlords and tenants to brush up on legalities and regulations to ensure they're kitted out with all the information needed to ensure a safe, legal and mutually-beneficial tenancy.

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My landlord is selling up. What are my rights?

When renting a home, it's important to remember that a landlord could decide to sell up at any time.

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What should a tenant look out for when viewing rental properties?

With more Brits than ever choosing to let out their second homes, the overall quality of rental accommodation in the UK has improved dramatically. There is an increasingly wide range of properties available to rent in most areas of the UK, which has made it easier for tenants to find a well-maintained property to live in.

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As a service provider,  the landlord will always have  to put a little more  effort into honouring their half of the tenancy agreement.  However,  the occupant  must also  adhere to certain guidelines  if they're to enjoy a quiet and comfortable stay. As you might have gathered, being a good tenant isn't hard if you've  stayed in a few properties already. You might be aware of the basic guidelines to follow and as you've signed a legally binding contract with the property owner, you can expect to come unstuck if you're in the wrong. 

On the other hand, you might be a first-time renter  seeking clarification on a few key areas, like the  average length  of a tenancy agreement or the power that a landlord holds over their asset, i.e. in what circumstances can they retain it. It's also common for  new tenants to seek advice on  the requirements  of their landlord, should they feel hard done by in any way.            

Whether you're entering the world of renting  for the first time  or double-checking your own rights, our help & advice section  for tenants is your one-stop shop for everything you need to know about renting a property. We''ll aim to  cover all of the above and more  to ensure that your reputation as a model  occupant stays intact.  

How to be a great tenant

If you plan on keeping yourself to yourself, you're unlikely to have any problems with your landlord on a personal level. This is a perfectly reasonable  approach to take and some feel more at home when they're not constantly having to meet with the property's  actual owner.

There are a few basic codes of conduct that must be observed and followed, though. Too many take their chances by  skipping their monthly payment or  sneaking a pet into the environment against the landlord's request. They may be required to front the cost of any resulting  damages or, in a more extreme scenario, dealt with a Section 8 notice for possession - prematurely ending their stay.

Our  articles  list  the perfect tenant's qualities and traits, along with the steps they  must take to prove their financial stability.          

The benefits of becoming one

You shouldn't need us to tell you of the numerous benefits that come with renting, but we'll be more than happy to explain just why so many are siding with this flexible living arrangement.

Indeed, one of the key benefits of renting is its flexibility, which  helps if you're in a career that might require you to change locations. You might  be thinking  carefully about your next significant step, perhaps contemplating a  move to fulfil certain ambitions.  By opting for renting over buying, you can spend your time  in a number of locations  before deciding on a permanent place of residence.  

That said, there's a lot  to be said about  owning a property and finally settling down. Well, in a period of economic uncertainty, you can use the money you save by  renting accommodation to fund a deposit  for your own house.  We've explained this point and many more in our articles.  

The binding documents

You can take a look at the specific terms of the tenancy agreement that binds landlord and occupant during the latter's stay. We've listed the requirements of both parties and in what circumstances the contract becomes void, all for future reference.

You can also browse the other  articles  covering documents like the Gas Safety Certificate, which details the  energy consumption of your property and is a legal requirement for all rental properties in England & Wales. In addition, we've also included a  few details on the powers held by landlord resources like the Section 21 Notice for possession.        

From the landlord's perspective

Within this section and some of the other articles located around the site, you can also garner the view of the landlord. You  might want to  note down what they're looking for  in their  tenants to guarantee that you're presented in the best possible way. Alternatively, you can check the  low-down on tenant referencing, or any other processes and documents that might be of interest.