Would you like to review your landlord, letting agent, property or neighbourhood today? The Students' Union are working with Marks Out Of Tenancy where you can let other people know your experience renting. This will also help the Students' Union to understand students' experience renting. For more information visit the Marks Out Of Tenancy website.
There are a couple of external agencies that you may be able to find advice or information from including;
The Student Community Partnership (SCP) is made up of Bath & North East Somerset Council and Student and Staff representatives from the University of Bath and Bath Spa University.
It provides a forum for liaison between the Universities, their Students' Unions and the Council on matters relating to students and the local community. This includes accommodation, transport, welfare, community relations, community safety and environmental issues.
You can have a look at the Student Community Partnership website here.
In all privately rented property, you’ll have certain rights and responsibilities. NUS have provided free resources and guidance to help you understand your rights and responsibilities as a tenant living in rented housing
NUS Tenancy Troubleshooting guide (England) includes information on during your tenancy, including:
- What you should do
- What your landlord should do
- What to do if your landlord isn’t meeting their obligations
- Where to get advice
NUS have also produced a video on Tenancy Tips.
There are also more resources including Tenancy Guides, Moving In and Moving Out resources at http://readytorent.nus.org.uk/resources/
In England and Wales, if you rent your home on an assured shorthold tenancy that started after 6 April 2007, your landlord must place your deposit in one of the following tenancy deposit protection (TDP) schemes:
- Deposit Protection Service (Custodial and Insured)
- Tenancy Deposit Scheme
These government-backed schemes ensure you’ll get your deposit back if you:
- meet the terms of your tenancy agreement
- don’t damage the property
- pay your rent and bills
Your landlord or letting agent must put your deposit in the scheme within 30 days of getting it.
At the end of your tenancy;
- If you and your landlord agree how much deposit you’ll get back, it must be returned to you within 10 days of the tenancy ending.
- If you’re in a dispute with your landlord, then your deposit is protected in the TDP until the issue is sorted.
- Your landlord doesn’t have to protect a holding deposit (money you pay to ‘hold’ a property before an agreement is signed). However, once you become a tenant, the holding deposit becomes a deposit, which they must protect.
Information landlords must give tenants;
Within 30 days of getting your deposit, your landlord must tell you:
- the address of the rented property
- how much deposit you’ve paid
- how the deposit is protected
- the name and contact details of the tenancy deposit protection (TDP) scheme and its dispute resolution service
- their (or the letting agency’s) name and contact details
- the name and contact details of any third party that’s paid the deposit
- why they would keep some or all of the deposit
- how to apply to get the deposit back
- what to do if you can’t get hold of the landlord at the end of the tenancy
- what to do if there’s a dispute over the deposit
Households where everyone’s a full-time student don’t have to pay Council Tax. If you do get a bill, you can apply for an exemption.
To count as a full-time student, your course must:
• last at least 1 year
• involve at least 21 hours study per week
If you study for a qualification up to A level and you’re under 20, your course must:
• last at least 3 months
• involve at least 12 hours study per week
You will get a Council Tax bill if there’s someone in your household who’s not a full-time student, but your household might still qualify for a discount.
To apply for a Council Tax exemption letter you can contact email@example.com
You need to be covered by a TV Licence to watch or record live TV programmes on any channel, or download or watch BBC programmes on iPlayer.
This could be on any device, including a TV, desktop computer, laptop, mobile phone, tablet, games console, digital box or DVD/VHS recorder. If you do any of the above without a valid licence, you risk prosecution and a maximum penalty of up to £1,000, plus any legal costs and/or compensation you may be ordered to pay. You will also still have to buy a TV Licence if you need one.
To find out more, go to tvlicensing.co.uk/studentinfo
NUS has published new research ‘Homes fit for study’ which revealed that over three quarters of students have a problem with the condition of their home, including Vermin! Click here to read the report and with help on how to deal with pest problems in your home.
• Read all the meters, and then contact all the utility companies with the final reading.
• Give them a forwarding address for the final receipt.
• Get contact details from all your housemates- you may need to forward deposits etc.
• Remove all of your items from the house- including any rubbish.
• Return ALL the keys to the agents- they will charge you if you don’t.