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Frequently Asked Questions

Here you’ll find answers to some of the questions we’re asked the most.

If your question isn’t here – just get in touch. We’ll be glad to help.

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What do I have to pay up front as a new tenant?

When you’ve submitted your completed application forms, we’ll ask you to pay the search and referencing fee and a ‘fee of intent’ – which is usually equivalent to half of one month’s rent.

Search and reference fees are non-refundable. We will however, refund the fee of intent in full if the landlord decides not to proceed or your application does not meet our minimum criteria.

If your application is successful, you pay your first month’s rent (minus your fee of intent) plus a deposit of one and a half times the monthly rent, plus the tenancy agreement administration fee.

If you have pets, you will also be asked to pay a ‘pet bond’ of £200 per pet, at the landlord’s discretion. This protects against pet-related damage or pest infestation. A pet bond is registered and held alongside your deposit in a government-approved scheme.

All transferred funds must clear before we release keys to the rental property.

What information do I need to give when I apply?

We’ll need your personal details (name, contact numbers, email and current address) when you apply.

We’ll also ask about your current employment and request your current landlord’s contact details if applicable. We’ll give you a financial reference request for you to pass to your bank.

Any information you give us is held under the Data Protection Act 1998.

What is a tenancy agreement?

You’ll most likely have an Assured Shorthold Tenancy agreement.

This is a legally binding agreement between you (the tenant) and your landlord that clearly defines your rights and your landlord’s obligations. You should read your tenancy agreement carefully and make sure you understand it, before signing in the presence of a witness.

If you’ve any questions about this document, we can help clarify for you. If you’re unsure about anything, you may wish to seek independent legal advice.

How long can I rent a property for?

An Assured Shorthold Tenancy is usually for at least six months, but where applicable we can arrange a tenancy agreement from six months up to a maximum of three years if the landlord agrees.

All tenancies are renewable, subject to landlord consent and the conditions of the tenancy being met.

Are utilities or council tax included in the rent?

Unless clearly specified otherwise, you will be responsible for paying utilities, council tax, telephone line rental and call charges, plus your television licence, internet access and tenant insurance.

An SLCA representative will take utility readings with you at check-in and pass these to the current providers. We take final readings at the end of your tenancy too.

What are my obligations at the end of the tenancy?

We ensure the property has been cleaned professionally and has a detailed and accurate inventory before you move in.

The professional clean includes the oven, carpets and windows, plus a chimney sweep where applicable.

Your tenancy agreement states you must ensure the property is in an equally clean and presentable state when you vacate, subject to fair wear and tear.

How do I recover my deposit when the tenancy ends?

SLCA will inspect the property against the detailed inventory from when you moved in.

Provided all is satisfactory, we arrange for your deposit to be released, minus the check-out fee. If any repairs or professional cleaning are needed to return the property to the condition it was at check-in, the deposit is released when we’ve deducted the invoiced costs.

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We look forward to discussing your needs and working to achieve the best results on your behalf.

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