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Renting Glossary

London Apartments Glossary

 

Types of London Apartments

Tenancy Agreement (Contract)

TERMS

 

Q. What is room/flat share /house share?

A. A flat or house share is where people live together in a private residence and share all the facilities i.e. washing machine, TV – the kitchen, living room, bathroom. People living in such arrangements will normally share responsibility for payment of bills and council tax for the property, and in some cases the bills are included in the rent.

 

Q. What is a bedsit?

A. For many people, living in a bedsit is the first foray into the private rental sector. As with everything, standards vary, but all bedsit are much the same in concept. Essentially, you have one main self-contained small unit to live in. This will come with a living area which doubles as a bedroom and a mini kitchen area that is also part of the same room. You should also get a basic (and small) bathroom, but it is not uncommon to find a communal bathroom and kitchen shared between two or more bedsit in a building.

 

Q. What is studio flat?

A. There is fine line between a studio and a bedsit. In fact, many people who apply to view a rental property that is advertised as a studio really find that it is a bedsit they are going to view. Essentially, a studio flat should always have bathroom and kitchen facilities. The kitchen may or may not be in a separate room to the main living area, but often will be. There should be no shared facilities with a studio flat and you should have your own lockable entrance door. Studio flats are more expensive than bedsits and often more spacious.

 

Q. What is flat/apartment?

 

Q. What is the difference between short-term and long term?

A. Short term refers to any flexible stay longer than one week. Mid term is usually 3-6 months and long term is for 6 months to one year. The shorter the stay the more expensive it is, but usually not as flexible as longer stays have contracts and notice periods to be aware of.


Q. What is a “Holding Deposit”?

A: A holding deposit is a deposit against the administration costs that are incurred at the start of a tenancy. It is usually a nominal amount payable when you make a firm offer. If you subsequently decide to pull out then you will forgo the deposit. If the landlord pulls out it will be refunded to you. If the deal goes ahead then the deposit is offset against the administration charges, the deposit and the advance rental.

 

Q. What are utilities?

A: Utilities mainly, gas, water, electricity, TV License and council tax etc.

 

Q. What is a tenancy agreement?

A. Your tenancy agreement will usually be a standard contract indicating the responsibilities of both landlord and you the tenant.

The landlord or letting agent will produce the tenancy agreement. It will cover dates, method of payment, and the circumstances under which the landlord will hold your deposit, and which repairs the landlord or letting agent is responsible for.

If your accommodation is furnished you will be asked to sign an inventory, which will list the contents. In the event of damage or loss of contents, compensation will be paid usually by the deposit. Be sure to check the inventory carefully, if there is anything that you are unsure off, or disagree with, query it immediately.

 

Q. Do tenants pay for repair and maintenance?

A. Repairs and maintenance will be covered in your tenancy agreement, but are a frequent source of tension between tenants and landlords.

You are normally expected to behave in a ‘tenant-like’ manner, meaning that you carry out any minor repairs without calling in the agent or landlord e.g. every time the sink gets blocked.

The more complex maintenance issues are usually the landlord’s duty, but under some agreements you will have to pay for repairs if they are deemed to be your fault.

Consult the landlord before you sign the agreement, so that you know exactly where you stand.

 

Q: How do I get my deposit back?

A: Make sure that the property is thoroughly cleaned and all items on the inventory are the same condition as at the out set.

If you have moved furniture – be sure to put it back to its original place. There will be an inspection (you should try and be present) to ensure that the items are all present and undamaged. Provided that this is the case your deposit will be returned shortly after you vacate the premises. You are not allowed to set the deposit off against the last month’s rent.

 

Q. Amenities

A: Facilities provided within the property.

 

Q. Attic/Loft

A: This is the space in between the upstairs ceiling and the roof. These can be converted into an extra room.

 

Q. Banker’s Draft

A: This is a guaranteed payment of funds.

 

Q. Contract

A: This is a legal document between 2 parties confirming an agreement.

 

Q. Credit checks

A: These are checks done when you try to borrow money or purchase something on hire purchase. They are basically checks to see that you are not a high credit risk. For example that you have not defaulted on credit card payments or owe money to other financial institutions.

 

Q. Deposit / Holding Deposit

Agreed sum of money given in full to the landlord/owner, to insure against damage or mistreatment of the property.

 

Q. Fixtures and fittings

A: All items within your home, from carpets to light fittings.

 

Q. Inventory

A: This is a list of household items present in the property when you move in. It is possible to have an inventory prepared for your property, with a Schedule of Condition by an independent inventory clerk. This must be checked carefully!

 

Q. Landlord/Owner

The person who has a valid and legal right, title and interest in the property.

 

Q. Property Management

property management is usually taken on by a company who acts as a liaison between the landlord and tenant. Duties of property management companies include collecting rent, responding to and repairing problems, advertising properties for landlords, and doing credit and background checks for tenants. In exchange for the service they provide property management companies typically charge landlords 8-10% of the gross rent collected each month, in addition to marking up repair costs.

 

Q. Rent

Rent is the payment made by a tenant of a property to the owner for possession and use, usually by prior agreement of the parties. Rent is normally payable on a monthly basis, excluding deposits.

 

Q. Rental Agreement

A rental agreement is a legally binding document signed by both the tenant and landlord. This will defines all the terms and conditions for the rental of the property.

 


Category: Tenants Information


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