Tenant Guide

Redfern Property Opening Hours

Redfern Property is open from 9am to 5pm daily, Monday to Friday. We are available for viewings from Monday to Saturday between 9am and 5pm, although we can also do evening viewings by request.

 Applying for a Tenancy

You can apply for a tenancy on our website, by visiting the following link: Online Application Form. This takes you to an online application form. Before you do apply for a tenancy, be sure to have had a viewing with one of our team on the property, and ask any and as many questions as you can!

 References

There are many reasons we take references, and these can be either from your current landlord, a general reference of a person who knows you or from your employer. At the end of the day, we want to make sure you can meet the demands of your contract, and it would be unfair to have you sign knowing you might not be suitable for the property or able to afford in the long run. We would never share the information we are given during a reference, and only use it following on from your application.

 Administration charges

The only administration charges we will every charge you with are £80.00 (per adult) or £90 (per student) to process your application – this covers the cost of our time, the application online and also credit checks and references. This is a charged per adult, and is done for every tenancy. If you tenancy is rolling, we won’t need to do this again.

Student admin charges are £10 more, because we have included contents insurance in the tenancy, with up to £5000 contents insurance and also £1000 laptop insurance. For only £10.00 extra per person, over the whole contract!

 Tenancy agreements

If your application is successful, we will send you a draft tenancy to read over. The tenancy is often referred to as an AST – an Assured Shorthold Tenancy, and generally they run for 6 months and are then rolling on a monthly basis. Be sure to read over all of the points in the agreement, and seek legal advice if you have any questions. We’re obviously happy to help if you have any queries, but at the end of the day we do work for the landlord.

Signing the agreements

We will send out the draft agreements prior to you coming to sign them. This gives you some time to read over all of the points properly, we don't want you to feel rushed when you're in the office. It also means you can write down any concerns or queries you have, so that we can discuss face to face before you sign. We also highly recommend you seek legal advice, as you are signing a legal and binding document.

To sign an agreement we will book an appointment slot for you to come to the Redfern Property office. This would usually take around half an hour, as we'll also be looking for deposit money as well.

Costs

The only costs to letting a property of us are:

  • Administration charges
  • Deposit (paid on signing the contract)
  • First month rent (paid to us and cleared in the account on or before the move in day)
  • Rent per month (only if the property is fully managed, otherwise we will provide you with the necessary Landlord details for you to process payments).

Deposit

The deposit is usually equal to the first months rent (but do check as it can vary), and is used to protect the landlord against any damages that might happen during the tenancy. With all of the deposits we accept, they are registered directly with the Deposit Protection Scheme - a government run scheme to ensure deposit money is looked after correctly and not spent during your tenancy.

When we register a deposit with the DPS, we are asked to nominate a Lead Tenant - this tenant is responsible for the DPS account and dispersing the deposit at the end of the tenancy.

Initial rent payment

The first rent payment is made when you sign the contract for your new property. This is made to Redfern Property in most cases, if not we'll give you the right details to make sure you pay the deposit to your new landlord. The rent payment needs to be cleared into the account by the move in date.

Keys

Keys will be available to you on your move in day - this is usually the first day on your contract. We won't be able to release keys if the deposit and first months rent have not been paid/not cleared in our account. We keep a spare of each key for when we require access to the property - if you lose a key we can replace for £7.50, and if you need to call us out if you lock yourself out, a call out fee of £20.00 applies.

Inventory

When you move in to one of our fully managed properties (and sometimes the tenant find properties) you will be given a dated and detailed inventory of the property prior to your contract starting. The purpose of the inventory is to ensure that the property is returned to the landlord in much the same condition at the end of the tenancy - it also covers tenants for example for any aesthetic damage that may already be on items of furniture. It is important you check the inventory thoroughly within 7 days of moving into the property.

Subsequent payments

For any fully managed properties, rent payments during your tenancy will be made to Redfern Property. For any other properties that we advertise the first rent will usually be paid to us at Redfern Property, and subsequent payments to the landlord direct.

Maintenance Reporting

It is your duty and we appreciate that you inform us as soon as possible should a maintenance issue arise. We are unable to act if we don't know that there is a problem, and in some cases the problem might be more serious and might affect the safety of yourselves as tenants within the property.

Where we can we will send a member of our maintenance team out to assess any situation, if it cannot be fixed at the time, we will keep you up to date with any progress (e.g. ordering parts).

Insurances

We recommend that all tenants insure their contents against damages (you never know what will happen). We work closely with Endsleigh Insurance who can offer you some great quotes on insuring your most valuable contents.

For our student properties, Endsleigh Insurance is included in the cost of your application fee - the application fee is £10.00 more than a private tenant, but includes up to £5,000 contents insurance and £1,000 laptop insurance.

We also work closely with Rentguard Insurance who offer great packages for Landlords - please get in touch for more information!

Property Management

Properties that are fully managed by Redfern Property mean that we are responsible for them. If you are renting from us and in a fully managed property, please report any issues or faults to us directly. We have already agreed authorisation up to a set budget with each landlord, and can authorise repairs and so forth quickly. In some cases (for example a new fridge needed) we will need to authorise spending of funds with the landlord.

It is common for the majority of our properties that are fully managed for tenants never to come into contact with their landlords - it might be that the landlords don't live locally.

Emergency Contact Numbers

In an obvious emergency (for example a fire) please call 999, otherwise, please call our 24 hour help line. We will then be able to advise as to whether or not you need to call the numbers below or if we can send someone out to you.

24 hour help line at Redfern Property: 07590 478232

Water emergency line: 0800 052 0130

Gas emergency line: 0800 111 999

Electricity emergency line: 0800 052 0400

Renewal of tenancy

Our standard tenancy agreement is 6 months in length. After this, the majority of our contracts then run on a "Monthly Rolling Basis", which means that the contract is valid month to month. We can on request provide a new contract for a set length of time, but have found that the rolling contracts suit the tenants.

Early termination

There are a few options here, but first thing first please do come and speak to us as soon as you know. We’re here to help as much as we can, and can offer you some advice! Our role as a letting agent is to negotiate between landlord and tenant in order to find a suitable resolution. Please do bear in mind that it depends on the situation and also the landlord completely - we cannot decide fro the landlord to release or not release you from the contract.

Pop in for a chat if you’re looking for some advice in regards to this.

Tenant swaps

In the event that you are looking to move out of the property (be that a property you rent from us as an individual or within a house share), one of the options available to you is tenant swapping. This means that if you are looking to leave before your contract ends, you can find a replacement tenant to take over your agreement and responsibilities. We are happy for this and will help you in anyway that we can, however for any potential tenants you do find would be subject to our usual application fees, references and credit checks. We would also take them for a viewing around the property.

Termination / Notice

If you are coming to the end of your fixed tenancy and don't wish to renew, or you are on a rolling tenancy and wish to leave, we would require 30 days written notice. This gives us some time to inform the landlord, draw up a new advert and take viewings for the property. Ideally, we'll have a new tenant lined up as soon as possible from your move out date.

Notice should be written to us, and not provided verbally. Verbal notice will not be accepted.

Deposit dispersal at the end of the tenancy

At the beginning of the tenancy, we have registered your deposit with the DPS and provided them with your designated Lead Tenant. The lead tenant will have received an email with a reference  ID and also a repayment ID. Both are required to login to your DPS account.

Before the end of your tenancy, Redfern Property will organise a "pre-move out inspection", usually around 2-3 weeks before you are due to leave. This is a great chance for tenants to point out any problems, breakages or damages, and also to take advice from Redfern Property as to what needs to be done to ensure a full refund of your deposit. There is absolutely no benefit to us in taking money off your deposit, and it is in our interest to provide your landlord with the property as near to the condition in which you accepted it.

We are also happy to attend the property 24-48 hours before you leave, to let you know of anything that will need looking at before you finally depart.

When your tenancy comes to an end, the property will be inspected again by either Redfern Property or the Landlord - it is at this point that all tenants will be informed of any deductions to be made. Once agreed, it is the responsibility of the lead tenant to disperse funds correctly at the end of the tenancy. Unfortunately, the letting agent is unable to help in anyway and does not have access to the account or money held by the DPS.

Mail

Upon departing the property at the end of your contract, we advise that you set up a redirect on your post to your new address. Please also ensure that you let us know your forwarding address, so if anything does get past a redirect we can forward it all on for you.

Some key companies to keep updated:

  • TV Licence
  • Council tax
  • HMRC
  • DVLA