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Penstemon22
28-01-2009, 09:57 AM
My son and his friends, who are all at University, are looking to rent a large house. One of the properties they have seen they like very much (there are 7 of them). I have 2 questions to ask.

1 The letting agent has told them that they each need to pay £75 on top of there deposit as an 'admin fee'. Is this normal, as it seems a lot, and I thought it was the LL responsibility to pay the agents fees.

2 If one of the tenants move out, whose responsibilty is it to find another tenant? Who pays the rent while the new tenant is being sort?

Many Thanks

mind the gap
28-01-2009, 14:57 PM
My son and his friends, who are all at University, are looking to rent a large house. One of the properties they have seen they like very much (there are 7 of them). I have 2 questions to ask.

1 The letting agent has told them that they each need to pay £75 on top of there deposit as an 'admin fee'. Is this normal, as it seems a lot, and I thought it was the LL responsibility to pay the agents fees.

2 If one of the tenants move out, whose responsibilty is it to find another tenant? Who pays the rent while the new tenant is being sort?

Many Thanks

1 Yes, unfortunately, a £75 'finding' fee is not unusual, despite the fact that the agent is charging LL on average 50% of the first month's rent for the property - (probably about £1000-£1500 in the case of your son+ friends). Money for old rope? Which is why it is preferable to rent directly from a reputable LL, but it isn't always possible. The agents defend this fee saying they do ref checks and draw up (ie print off) a tenancy agreement and sort out guarantor forms, etc. But it's not £2000 worth of work).

2 The simple answer is ; tenants should not move out before the end of the tenancy- they have signed a contract and are legally bound by it. However if it does happen (e.g because someone fails their exams and drops out of Uni), all 7 continue to be jointly liable for the full rent (I am assuming it is a joint AST - is it? Or do they have indiviudal ones? Is the total rent below £25000 p.a.?) If they want to replace one of the tenants with a different person, they will need the LL's approval and a new AST should be drawn up and signed by all parties.

Incidentally, if you are your son's guarantor, be aware that depending on the wording of the guarantor agreement, you may be (jointly) committing yourself to guaranteeing the whole rent and any damage done, not just your son's 'one seventh'. It's worth making a fuss about this, if you think some of the tenants may be 'flakey' and liable to drop out.

LandlordLee
28-01-2009, 18:00 PM
I would suggest perhaps they find a private Landlord who would not charge a fee, and they may find the rents to be cheaper.

Tell them to get a list of landlords from Unipol in hte area, or better still, check out sites such as gumtree.com or google student lets as many private landlords advertise locally.

I only finished Uni in '08 and i remember in my second year paying fees, but finding that in the 3rd year local landlords were not only cheaper, but much more efficient with problems.