Tenant Guide

We at Evolution understand that moving is an extremely stressful time and we have prepared this guide to help you understand the process from application to completion. We would advise that this is a general guide and each and every application will be different. Our staff are always on hand to help and advise you with any questions you may have.

  1. Application
  2. Moving forward
  3. What else do you need to do?
  4. On the day
  5. Insurance
  6. Managed properties
  7. Rental payment
  8. Notice to end a tenancy
  9. Inventory
  10. Deposit returns
  11. Tenants’ obligations
  12. Property inspection
  13. Council tax & utilities

 

Application

Once you have decided upon a suitable property for rent, all applicants over the age of 18 must complete an application form. In the case where a guarantor will be required, they too must complete the correct application and will be given a guide which details their responsibilities. You must also agree and sign the Terms & Conditions of renting.

To ensure that we can secure the rental property as quickly as possible for you, we require all forms completed in full and accompanied by suitable Identification (Current Passport or Driving Licence) and proof of address (Current Utility Bill ie Council Tax, Gas, Electric or Water). One of our team will then contact the landlord to confirm acceptance, subject to referencing. Any changes during this time will also require the landlord’s approval. We will then require your administration fee (inc. VAT) which is £195 for a single applicant, £345 for a couple and £120 for a guarantor. The application process will then start and can take up to 5 working days but we will be in contact with you during the whole process of organising your house to rent in Ashford. Please note that the administration fee does not constitute a Tenancy or offer of a Tenancy but is solely to cover administration costs and is non-refundable should your application be unsuccessful or you withdraw, for any reason.

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Moving forward

The next stage, once your application has been acceptable, is to organise your moving in day. We know as Estate agents in Ashford for many years that there are many different things to consider when booking this day and we will be as helpful and flexible as we possibly can. At this point, a contract and completion fee of £175 (inc. VAT) which is non-refundable should you withdraw, should be paid to secure your completion date.

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What else do you need to do?

The next stage will be to arrange payments for your rent in advance and deposit. Under normal circumstances the deposit will be the equivalent of one month’s rent +£100 and we will confirm all amounts of the cost of the property to rent in writing to you prior to the commencement of the tenancy. If pets have been agreed, there is an additional £250 deposit per animal. You can arrange to pay by BACS at least 3 working days prior or simply cash on the day. We will require a copy of suitable protection insurance and can arrange for this to be in place to protect you and the property giving you peace of mind.

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On the day

Unlike many other estate agents in Ashford, we will meet you at the property at the arranged time and request that all parties, including guarantors, are present to sign all relevant documentation. We will show you where all the services and emergency shut off's are as well as showing you how to work the heating and hot water system. Once we have completed the transaction, the keys will be handed to you and the tenancy commences. It really is as easy as that!

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Insurance

The responsibility for your belongings are down to you, you must ensure you have adequate contents insurance, the landlord accepts no responsibility and cannot be held responsible for any loss or damage to tenant's possessions.

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Managed properties

We do get instructed to fully manage some of our landlord’s properties, if this is the case with your tenancy, we will inform you prior to your tenancy commencing. If we are managing agents, then any faults with appliances or problems within the property will need to be reported to us in the correct way and we will deal with the problem as quickly and efficiently as possible. Failure to report an ongoing problem may turn the onus onto you.

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Rental payment

Rental payments are always made by standing order from the tenant's bank account to the landlord’s bank account, with the exception of managed properties whereby the rental payment is made to us. This is the tenant's responsibility to set this up and all rent will be paid in advance and by BACS payments at least 3 days before the due date to allow for clearing times. All rents are exclusive of utility bills unless otherwise stated. 

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Notice to end a tenancy

To terminate your tenancy subject to term, you will normally be required to give us at least one contractual month's notice in writing of your intention to leave, unless otherwise specified in your specific tenancy agreement. The only other payment to Evolution SE will be your checkout fee of £90 (inc. VAT). 

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Inventory

A well-prepared inventory and check-in report protects landlords and tenants alike, providing an accurate description of the condition and contents of a property at the start of a tenancy.

Our inventory clerk will prepare a detailed condition and contents report. This is carried out without either parties being present and will be the same at the point of checkout to provide an unbiased and independent review. The condition of the property and its contents at the end of the tenancy is then compared back to this report in the form of a check-out report. The inventory clerk will also provide an opinion on whether any damage that has arisen during the tenancy is attributable to the tenants, to ‘fair wear and tear’ or to the landlord as required maintenance.

It is in a landlord’s interest to ensure that inventories are prepared for properties that they own. In the worst case scenario, should you end up in court, the judge will tend to look more favourably on an impartial, unbiased inventory prepared by a third party. 

The tenants will sign the inventory at the point of moving in to confirm that they have received this along with the extensive collection of digital photographs and that they understand that they must make any amendments to their copy and return it so that we can retain a copy to be used at the point of check out. If a separate list of amendments is sent this will not be accepted.

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Deposit returns

When your tenancy ends, a representative from Evolution will meet you at the property. They will check that all items have been removed and that the utility readings are taken. Please note that we do not take water meter readings but we will inform them of a change of occupancy. They will check your forwarding details and confirm that check out payment has been received. The property will be secured at this point. An inspection of the property will then be carried out, and any damages will be noted. Repairs or damages will be accounted for and requested from the deposit. Your deposit will usually be held with the DPS (Deposit Protection Service) and you will be provided with full details, terms and condition.

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Tenant's obligations

The responsibility for the property lies with the tenant during the period of tenancy, always ensure that the property is fully secured and that during the winter month's steps are taken to prevent freezing of the water and heating system. Tenants would be expected to look after and maintain a property as their own other than major repairs or breakdowns.

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Property inspection

If we are instructed as managing agents for your property, we will carry out quarterly inspections to assess the condition of the property and that everything is being kept in a satisfactory condition. We will always arrange this with you at a mutually convenient time. You do not pay for a tenancy renewal but you may be charged if you do not allow visits and appointments to go ahead.

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Council tax & utilities

It is the tenant’s responsibility to inform the utility companies of their occupation of the property at the commencement and ending of the tenancy, and to pay council tax to the local authority. Students, who may be exempt from the payment of council tax, are responsible for informing the Local Authority of this. Tenants will need to pay for any communication connections, disconnections and TV licencing.

Wherever applicable VAT will be charged at the current VAT rate.

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Has your property's value increased? Call 01233501601