Do you know your rights as a Tenant
If you are reading this then you may be moving out to a rented property for the first time. Alternatively, you may have had problems in the past with a landlord or lettings agency or are currently looking to resolve a dispute with them. In order to discuss the matter it helps to be fully aware of your rights as a tenant as this will make it easier to settle disputes in a calm and rational manner (something that is not always easy in a stressful situation.)
A clear tenancy agreement/rent book
Simply put a landlord/lettings agency should make it clear when rent is due, how much you can expect to pay and other details concerning payment (for example whether or not bills are included). These details should be given to you within 28 days of when you start your tenancy (the rent book should also specify your right to claim housing allowance under the Local Housing Allowance if you are renting privately.)
It is also important to read through the tenancy agreement and to be clear about what your responsibilities are as a tenant. It should cover details such as when inspections take place, who to contact regarding repairs etc. If you are unsure about any details in the agreement you should discuss this with the landlord/lettings agency.
If a tenancy agreement expires you have the right to a six month tenancy that can then continue as a periodic tenancy agreement.
If the tenancy agreement does not clearly address who is responsible for paying for repairs then the landlord is legally obliged to cover some repairs.
No harassment/unlawful eviction
As a tenant it is your responsibility to pay rent and to maintain the rented property in the best possible condition. However, this does not mean that a landlord can enter the property without notice and they are not able to forcibly evict tenants (this covers actions such as changing locks, removing possessions from the property or any form of physical or verbal threats and intimidation.)
Tenants have a right to 28 days’ written notice before they can be evicted from a property. If a tenant refuses to move out when the landlord terminates the tenancy a landlord can only get possession of the property back through legal action.
It is important to be aware of what is and is not covered under tenancy agreements. Sometimes disputes will arise because of grey areas in the agreement or what is or is not lawful. If you have any concerns or feel your landlord is not acting in a reasonable manner then it is worth contacting Larcomes to see what we can do to help.
Our services for tenants include advice on the details and length of term of a tenancy agreement, advice on health and safety regulations and mediation in disputes (for the full list of services and to contact our property specialists click here)
In short, if you are concerned, contact us today and see what we can do to help ensure that your tenancy is a happy one!