A simple step-by-step guide to renting a property through Metro Village

Finding a property
• We at Metro village offer some very useful and free services via our website that take the hassle out of finding a property to rent.
• We do the hard work for you by keeping you alerted to new property with Email & Text Property Alerts; you can even view all property details on our website via your mobile phone or computer.
• Once you’ve found a property, we will guide you throughout every step of the renting process and will provide everything you will need during your tenancy.

Reserving a property
• When you wish to secure a property to rent with us, we will require an initial reservation fee in order to submit an offer to the landlord.
• The acceptance of your reservation fee does not imply a tenancy which will only be created when the tenancy agreement has been signed by all parties.
• Please note that your offer is subject to the landlord’s approval and that in accordance with the Estate Agents Act 1979, the marketing of the property will continue whilst your application is processed and until the tenancy agreement has been signed.
• There may be an administration charge, should you cancel you application at this point.


Providing reference details for renting

We will need to obtain references before we can create a tenancy agreement. The landlord will need to know that you can pay the rent and have good character. Once you have provided the required information, we will begin the check.
You will need the following reference details for renting:
• Full name, date of birth & nationality
• Your address history for the last 3 years
• Proof of address: bank, credit card or mobile phone statement
• Income/occupation: details of your income sources and employer
• Bank account: details of the bank account to be used to pay the rent
• Credit/debit card: details of the card and statement address
• Your next of kin: details of who to contact in an emergency on your behalf
• Name of previous landlord/managing agent (if any)
• Contact details of someone who can provide a character reference for you
• If you’re a student you will need to provide proof of your student status

(Referencing will be done via FCC Paragon)

About Guarantors
If the tenant is a student, self-employed, or newly employed we will ask for a Guarantor to underwrite the rent. A Guarantor has to be an employed homeowner with a clean credit history and possessions.
Guidance for overseas tenants
• Many people from overseas successfully find properties to rent with Metro village.
• Many of our staff are also multi lingual so if you want to speak to us in your native tongue, we can accommodate you.
• FYI, you may find it helpful to translate this website’s pages into your own language by using Google’s free translation service at www.google.com/language_tools.

Deposits, fees and rental payments
Deposit with the first rental payment
• We take 6-8 week's worth of rent as deposit along with your first month’s rental payment.
• As complies with the law, your deposit is safeguarded by an independent rental deposit scheme called Tenancy Deposit Solutions.
• You can find out about this scheme at http://www.mydeposits.co.uk/tenants/how.aspx.

How to pay your rent
• By standing order.
• By telephone.
• By cheque.

How you pay your rent will be determined be based on the property itself, In most cases rental payments are transferred to the landlord direct from the tenant.

The Letting Agreement between Landlord & Tenant
You will be given a copy of the tenancy agreement, or Assured Shorthold Tenancy. This agreement must be signed by both the tenant and the landlord and entitles the Landlord to possession of the property at the end of the tenancy period and most rental tenancies are for 12, 18 or 24 months.
Your contact at Metro village will explain the tenancy agreement to you in detail and then provide you with a copy which has been signed by all parties. Generally the points you should note under the tenancy agreement are:
• The tenancy agreement is between you and the landlord. Metro village are not a party to the contract and are not appointed to arbitrate its terms.
• All tenants have joint and several liability under the tenancy agreement.
• You are contracted to stay in the property for the duration stated in the tenancy agreement. The Assured Shorthold Tenancy agreement means that the landlord has already served formal notice to you to give up possession on the date stated in the tenancy agreement.
• Where a guarantor has entered into an agreement, in the event of the tenant not meeting the obligations under the agreement, the guarantor would be liable to accept responsibility.

Arranging utilities
• In most cases the tenant has to pay gas, electricity, telephone, council tax and water bill charges.
• You should check with your landlord to get these services changed into your own name.
• Electricity and telephone services must be in effect for at least 4 working days prior to moving.

Provision of keys
• The landlord will provide a set of keys for each tenant in the property.
• Locks are not to be changed without the expressed approval of the landlord.
• At the end of the tenancy, tenants must return all keys to Metro village otherwise they will run the risk of forfeiting their deposit.
• Metro village will sometimes keep a set of keys to be used in emergencies by the tenant upon the provision of a satisfactory form of identification.
• A minimum deposit of £20 will be required before we can give you any keys.
• Naturally tenants must return these keys as quickly as is humanly possible.

Moving into the property
• Your contact at Metro village will arrange to for your ‘Check in’ to the property you are renting.
• At this stage an inventory report) will be prepared to record the condition of the property and it is your job to sign and verify the recorded condition of the property.
• Naturally we will ensure that the landlord has the property in a clean and tidy state ready for you to move in.
• We also ask the Landlord to provide a binder with any pertinent instructions for your reference.
• If the property is managed by us, you will receive a tenant’s information pack.

About inventory and check in reports
• Should the landlord fail to arrange an inventory, we prepare a report called a Check in Report.
• It is important that you check you are agree with the Inventory or Check in report as it will be used to ascertain the condition of the property at the end of the tenancy.
• Your landlord will conduct a comparison between the check in report and the check out report to see whether or not any deductions should come out of your deposit.
• The reports will list the state of household items, and appliances, as well as the general interior.
Your safety under gas, furnishing and electrical regulations
The landlord is legally obliged to ensure that the property is safe to live in under electrical, gas, and furnishing regulations.

The Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998:

• Law states that gas appliances and associated pipes must be maintained and checked annually by a skilled, experienced, and qualified engineer.
• Prior to moving in, it is your right to be given a copy of the last record of inspection. If you are not physically handed a copy then a record must be present in the property along with instructions for these properties.
• If these conditions have not been met then you must consult with your landlord.

The Furniture and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations:
• This act decrees that all furniture in the property must contain labels that display their fire resistance.

The Electrical Equipment (Safety) Regulations 1994:
• Electrical appliances must be checked before you move in to the property. Safety regulations fact sheets can be viewed at http://www.letlink.co.uk/letting-factsheets/factsheets/

Contact During the Tenancy
Unless your rented property is ‘Managed’ by Metro village you will deal directly with the landlord after you move in. Your property consultant at Metro village will be able to advise you on this point.

If you have any queries (‘Managed’ property only):
Once you have moved in to the property, we will email you a Tenant Information Pack, the contents of which are listed below, and this information will also be available online during your tenancy through the “My Account” section on our website.
From the date of your occupation all correspondence should be dealt with by your Property Manager at Metro village, whose contact details will be detailed in your Tenant's Information Pack.
Please note that in the interest of all parties concerned, Metro village will only correspond or discuss any matters with the parties who are renting as named in the Tenancy Agreement. However, if any party wishes to nominate another to handle their affairs, they can provide a legal Power of Attorney document for that party and from then on, Metro village will only deal with this party in substitution of the original.

Contents of Tenants' Information Pack for renting:
• Contact numbers you'll need for Metro village (e.g. your Property Manager)
• Copy of the signed Tenancy Agreement
• Property Inventory or Check in Report
• Gas safety check (if applicable)
• Spare standing order forms
• Any service contracts relating to property
• Particular requirements relating to the property
• Guidance notes issued to tenants: how to deal with condensation, deposits, giving notice on your lease, inspections, keys, replacing tenant information, reporting repairs, tenants information sheet

If you need repairs whilst renting (‘Managed’ property only)
• We are usually authorised by landlords to carry out repairs of up to £250 but some prefer their consultation before any repairs.
• We of course understand that you will need things to be working as soon as possible and will hence arrange repairs as quickly as possible.
• This may entail us gaining a quote from the repairer before consulting with the landlord.

Out of hours repairs for emergencies only
• For emergency repairs that occur out of hours – 5pm to 9am - you need to phone a separate number.
• Once you become a tenant, you will be provided with this number.

Visual inspections (‘Managed’ property only)
• At certain points throughout the duration of the tenancy, we may inspect the property to ensure that everything is in working order.
• We will naturally contact you beforehand to inform you to set arrangements for a visit date.

Renewing your tenancy or moving out
• Two months before the end of the tenancy, we will contact you to see if you would like to renew it. If you wish to stay on in the property we will seek approval from the landlord and make any necessary arrangements.
• If the landlord does not wish to renew the tenancy we can start looking for an alternative property to rent if you wish.
• Please appreciate that if you are not staying in the property we may wish to show it to other prospective tenants during your notice period.

Return of your rental deposit
• At the commencement of the tenancy you would normally have been checked in and received an inventory or check in report outlining the condition of the property.
• At the end of your tenancy, a similar check out report is compiled and this is where the condition and cleanliness of the property is checked and reported back to the landlord.
• Normally this document is referred to by the landlord in deciding what deductions for repairs, if any, need to be made from your deposit.
• Metro village cannot be involved in any decision over return of deposit - this is between the tenant and the landlord.
• You can liaise with the Landlord about return of deposit, after the inventory or our check out report has been done. A copy of this report will be sent to you for your reference.

Protection of deposits for tenants
• Landlords are required by legislation to pay a tenant’s deposit into a separate custodial or insurance based deposit scheme. Either type of scheme will protect a tenant’s deposit money.
• If only part of the deposit is in dispute, then the remainder that is not in dispute must be returned to the tenant within a maximum of 10 days of the tenancy ending.
• The tenant and landlord can jointly or separately apply to the deposit scheme to have their case referred to resolution or court.
• Once a resolution has been reached, the deposit must be returned within a maximum of 10 days.
• Landlords who let their property through Metro village use the Tenancy Deposit Solutions scheme - to find out more see http://www.mydeposits.co.uk/tenants/how.aspx
• This information was correct at the time of publication and may be periodically updated. Advice may vary between agents so please check if you wish to clarify any points.