Agent

An authorised person or company acting on behalf of the landlord.

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Accompanied viewing

An appointment to look around a property accompanied by the agent

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Fixtures & Fittings

Items usually provided in a letting – curtains, carpets, blinds, light fittings, kitchen units, appliances, (in the case of some lettings there will beds, chairs, tables and other items...

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AST (Assured Shorthold Tenancy)

An assured shorthold tenancy is a kind of assured tenancy, which offers the landlord a guaranteed right to repossess his/her property at the end of the term. (See also...

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Bankers Draft

It is similar to a cheque, however the money has been debited to your bank account and it means the person receiving this will know it is safe money....

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Block Management

Agents who act for the freeholders and leaseholds for block of apartments and flats. They collect a service charge from the leaseholders and organise the maintenance of the communal...

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Break Clause (Release Clause)

This is a clause sometimes inserted in a fixed term tenancy, typically if the initial fixed term is for a year or more. Often found in Company let agreements....

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Credit Referencing

References taken up on a tenant applying for rented accommodation. Most agents and individual landlords use a credit referencing company who, for a fee, will contact the applicant’s employer,...

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Company Let

Let to a bona fide company. This is a contract not an AST.

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Council Tax

Local authority tax for England, Wales and Scotland. In most cases this will be the responsibility of a tenant to pay.

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Deposit

Amount of money held by the landlord or agent for security against damage. In Britain approximately the equivalent to six week rental is held. In April 2007 a new...

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Direct Debit

See section on Standing Orders

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Gas Safety Certificate

The Landlord of a rented property must, by law, have a gas safety check carried out prior to a let and then annually. A copy of the record must...

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Guarantor

A person who is prepared to guarantee rental payments and other obligations of a tenancy. The guarantor will be liable for rental payments if a tenant is unable to...

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High Rent Tenancy

Tenancy agreement when the annual rent is over £25,000 per annum and known as a contractual tenancy.

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Holding Deposit

This is usually a nominal amount that will be asked for when a tenant applies for a tenancy of a property. If the tenancy does not proceed – tenant...

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HMO (House in Multiple Occupation)

House in multiple occupation –Your home is a House in Multiple Occupation (HMO ) if both of the following apply: at least 3 tenants live there, forming more than...

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Inventory

An inventory is a binding legal document that provides an accurate written record of the condition and contents of a property at the beginning of a tenancy.

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Joint and Several Liability

Often applies to House shares. Where there is to be more than one (adult) person living in the property, the tenancy will say they are “jointly and severally” responsible....

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Landlord

A person, persons, company or body that has a formal interest in the premises and has the right to let the property.

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PCM (Per Calendar Month)

Rental figure “pcm” – per calendar month.

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References

Checking a tenant applicant’s suitability to be able to pay the rent and also the applicant’s track record in earlier rentals. This often involves contacting previous landlords, the present...

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Utilities (Services)

These are normally electricity, gas and water. Under most circumstances the tenant is responsible for paying for these.

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Standing Order

Standing order mandate is an instruction that the tenant makes to his/her bank for payment of rent. It can either be set up on a form or on line...

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Studio Apartment / Flat

Flat with bedroom/living room all in one either with a separate kitchen or corner of the main room as a kitchen with separate bathroom and toilet.

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Superior Landlord

People or person to whom the ownership of a property might revert to at a later stage. e.g. an apartment with a 99 year lease. See also Superior Lease.

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Superior Lease (Head Lease)

This is the lease that the landlord holds. This is often the case in an apartment/flat where the owner has the leasehold interest, but another individual owns the freehold....

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Term of Tenancy

Length of tenancy – most initial tenancy agreements are for a minimum of six months.

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Stamp Duty

A tax paid by purchasers of properties with a value in excess of £125,000, of between 1% and 4% depending on value. The tenant is responsible for paying any...

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Tenancy Agreement

This is a legal binding document containing details about the rental terms. It will state the parties involved i.e. the landlord and tenants, the rental price and the property...

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Tenant

A person, persons (company or organisation) who is entitled to occupy a property under the terms and conditions of a tenancy agreement.

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Covenants

The terms of the tenancy agreement these are obligations or “promises” made by either Landlord or Tenant.

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Lease

A contract whereby a tenant pays a landlord, or leaseholder pays a freeholder, for the right to use a property. Leases can be of short or very long duration....

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