In recent times, renting property has become more common. What this means is that sometimes disputes can occur between tenants and landlords. As a tenant, it is important to be aware of what your rights and responsibilities are so that you can deal with any legal issues as they arise.
Make sure there is a tenancy agreement
Having something in writing will be important in the event of any issues. It is also beneficial for the landlord, as they can clarify what they expect from you as a tenant. Also, you should have a signed agreement so that they are bound to it- there is the danger that a landlord could refuse to sign it later on, so it is better to do this before moving into the property.
It is also important to clarify who is covered under this agreement, whether it is you as a solo tenant or if you have a partner or family living with you.
More people are using inventory companies to check what is inside the property and its condition. As with the tenancy agreement, this should be done at the start to avoid any disputes regarding the condition of the property after the tenants have moved on.
As a tenant your property should be in a fit state of repair, to know who your landlord is, as well as protection from any disturbance or unfair eviction. You should get your deposit returned to you at the end of your tenancy, provided that you have adhered to the terms of the tenancy agreement.
Since 1st June 2019, rules have also been put in place so that some fees do not have to paid when setting up a tenancy, as well as being able to challenge any that you feel are excessive.
As a tenant, you are expected to not damage the property and to promptly report any issues. You also need to pay your rent on time (unless you have discussed this with your landlord), regardless of any dispute you may have, as well as covering any bills (such as water, electricity, council tax or television license).
It is also important to check if you can sublet someone on the property, as well as paying for any damage caused by someone if they stay over. If you are found to have breached your tenancy agreement, then you may be evicted.
There are two types of eviction a landlord can do- A Section 21 means you can evict someone at the end of their tenancy or during an agreed break in the agreement and can be done without offering a reason.
A Section 8 occurs if the landlord has a specific reason such as non-payment of rent or if it is believed that you are causing a disturbance. However, a landlord should only do this if they have grounds or evidence. If you feel this has been unfairly served, you can take this to court.
We can help
If you feel that your landlord has breached the terms of your agreement or you are trying to resolve a dispute, Larcomes can help. Contact our specialists today to see how we can help you.