If you intend to rent a flat you should be aware of certain responsibilities and obligations which affect you as Tenant. This is written to help you understand your rights and obligations, but the contents are intended only as information. This page does not form part of the contract between Pimlico Flats and any Tenant. It is intended to provide helpful information only.
A successful tenancy is founded on goodwill, and fair play on both sides. We hope that you find that you are treated fairly by Pimlico Flats, and that if you are unhappy with your treatment you will feel able to make a complaint.
The Tenancy Agreement
Almost certainly all tenancies will use a letting agreement called the Assured Shorthold Tenancy. This agreement takes the form specified by law (Part 1 of the Housing Act 1988 as amended under part 3 of the Housing Act 1996 & the Housing Act 2004) and those Housing Acts protect the rights of the tenant. Pimlico Flats normally enter into a standard tenancy of 6 months, but we will agree a tenancy of any length that you want security for (subject to an agreed rent). At the end of the tenancy if neither of us have served notice on the other to terminate the agreement, it continues until one of us serves notice or it is replaced with another agreement, in what is known as a "Periodic Tenancy".
The important points about a tenancy agreement are:
Neither party may terminate the agreement within the term of the agreement without the other's agreement.
The agreement is effectively open ended, and we will only enter into a new contract if we wish to agree a new rent.
If we wish to terminate the agreement we must give you 2 months notice, if you wish to terminate the agreement you must give us 1 months notice. In each case the notice can only run from the date of the agreement. For example if a tenancy runs from the 1st of the month, if you give notice on the 2nd of the month the agreement will not terminate for nearly 2 months. We have a "Notice to terminate" form which should be completed and received by the 1st of the month prior to departure.
The Agreement is between the Landlord and the Tenant and is a legally binding and an enforceable document. The terms set out in it are not flexible and must be strictly adhered to by both parties. Tenants may occupy a property on the day the Tenancy commences and should vacate on the day it terminates.
If a Tenant wishes to vacate prematurely they will remain responsible for the whole rent for the remainder of the Tenancy, or until such time as a suitable replacement Tenant is found who is acceptable to the Pimlico Flats. Where one Tenant out of a group vacates early, the remaining Tenants will continue to be responsible for the whole rent, as under the terms and conditions of the Tenancy Agreement, all Tenants are jointly and severally responsible for the full rent. Also tenants are responsible for Council Tax for the remainder of the Tenancy, or until such time as a suitable replacement Tenant is found who is acceptable to the Pimlico Flats.
The Agreement has been prepared by Pimlico Flats. There is a small administration charge to the tenant for the Agreement.
Charges to Rent a Flat
At the time that you commit to renting a flat you will be required to pay a payment of £300 pending preparation of references and tenancy agreement. Should you withdraw from the tenancy this sum will be forfeit to compensate us for having to re-advertise the property. If we withdraw from the tenancy the deposit will be returned in full, should we proceed to a tenancy the payment will be taken as an administration charge (as of October 2011 £300) taken at the beginning of the Tenancy to cover the costs of changing a tenancy:
The preparation of the rental agreement.
Utility Readings - We spend £2000/year (roughly equivalent to £100/tenancy) in communications with Utility Companies and Council Tax over unpaid bills.
To put these charges in perspective the local letting agent made the following equivalent charges in 2010:
Inventory charges depending on the Flat & can vary from £80 - £300 per inspection. The tenant pays the Check In fee, the Landlord the Check Out fee.
The charges by a letting agent are subject to VAT ours are not.
We take a security deposit which is protected according to statute. You will be given details of where your deposit is protected within 30 days of the tenancy commencing
Utilities - Gas, Electricity, Council Tax, Telephone and Water Charges
We make clear when Utilities are included in the rent, and when they are excluded. If the utilities are the tenants responsibility it is essential that the TENANT completes the necessary application forms and pays the relevant charges for the electricity, gas and telephone, failing which the services will probably be disconnected soon after taking occupation.
Final readings for the services should be taken upon vacation of the property, and given to the Landlord with your forwarding address in order to terminate any further liability. These will be recorded on our "Notice to Terminate" form.
YOU MUST NOT ARRANGE FOR THE UTILITIES TO BE DISCONNECTED.
Your agreement makes explicit what charges are included. With a few exceptions the Tenant is generally liable for the Council Tax on the property for the term of the Tenancy. You should notify Westminster City Council of the date that your tenancy agreement commences (not your date of occupation) at the commencement and likewise inform the Council when the tenancy ends (again this may not be when you vacate). We will supply the property reference number to quote.
In all Properties Pimlico Flats is responsible for the water rates.
Rent is due monthly in advance payable at the commencement of the tenancy and then every 1st of the month thereafter by Standing Order, until the penultimate month of the tenancy.
The Tenant should record exactly when the rental payments are due and there is no legal obligation on the part of the Landlord to send out rent demands.
The Landlord is entitled to charge interest on all rental which is in arrears. At the present time this is charged at 7% above BoE Base Rate. All long term rentals are paid per calendar month. Rent is clearly stipulated within the Tenancy Agreement and should be paid by Standing Order, although we will accept Cheques and Cash by arrangement. Please try to be punctual with rent payment as it is costly, unpleasant, and annoying to be chasing stragglers over rent. If you have a problem paying your rent please discuss the problem as soon as possible.
Maintenance and Care of the Flat
We monitor and care for our flats and your safety and security continually. CCTV secures the approaches and entrances 24/7. Someone visits and checks every day.
The Landlord & Tenant will agree an Inventory of the Fixtures and Furnishings at the property. The Tenant is expected to check sign and return this within 7 days, failing which the Inventory will be deemed correct and used for check-out purposes. There are no charges to the Tenant at the end of the tenancy for checking the Dilapidations, unless the tenant wishes to employ their own clerk.
The Tenant should insure their own personal effects as the Landlord does not insure them.
Because of Fire Regulations Cycles cannot be left in the Halls & Staircases.
The Landlord is responsible for the maintenance of the Building (Structure & Services) Fabric and the cleaning of common parts. To this end Pimlico Flats retain a Manager (Mr George Mooney 07947 777575) for regular maintenance & emergency call-outs. George visits every day.
Tenants have their own responsibility for Day to Day maintenance (e.g. keeping drainholes clear, cleaning Balconies/Yards, not overloading power circuits), so please be aware that you may be liable for callout charges or damages when a problem has been caused by you, your lack of action, or if the work is not the Landlord's responsibility (e.g. flooding from blocked drains, changing fuses, changing light bulbs...).
Please follow the following procedures with faults:
George is in reception from 09:00 until 12:00 Monday - Friday.
Report faults to George verbally, or put a note to him through the letter box of 75.
Minor faults will generally be fixed the same day. If they cannot be, you will be told the same day when they will be fixed.
You will be told the same week when major faults will be fixed.
If a fault has not been fixed in the timescale promised, report it to firstname.lastname@example.org
Useful Telephone Numbers
Nick Parkin 07850 769597
George Mooney 07947 777575
EDF Energy 0800 096 9000
British Gas 0800 048 0202
Westminster City Council (Council Tax) 0845 302 3400