Guide to renting

Let us guide you

If you are looking to rent a property in Stoke-on-Trent, Newcastle-under-Lyme or the Staffordshire Moorlands then you’re joining the growing army of ‘generation rent’, up from 10% of all UK households during the 1990s to close to 25% of households today.

But despite so many people renting, it is surprising how many first-time tenants don’t know the basics of how to rent a home, and the potential pitfalls they face.

To help, here’s our guide to take you through the process, step by step.

Find a property

We can help there

You can start by looking on our website for properties and because properties can go almost as fast as they are listed it’s worth registering with us so we can get in touch with you as soon as we’ve got something perfect for you and before they’re even listed online

Do the viewings

We will show you around

Staffordshire Knot Estate Agents always take wide lens professional pictures which admittedly can make even the most cramped one-bedder look more spacious than it is, so it’s vital to go and see properties in the flesh however desperate you are.

It’s also a good opportunity to find out some vital information to help you decide whether to bag the property quickly, or not like if the property is managed by us or the landlord, deposits, fees and situation with regards to pets and smoking.

Sort your references

We have to do our due diligence

This includes a credit check plus references from your bank, previous landlord and employer. If you can’t provide these then sometimes its common that landlords will allow member of your family or friends to act as yours rent guarantor.

Right to rent check

Last bit of legal checks

The government now forces landlords or their respective letting agents to check that each tenant over 18 years old named on a tenancy agreement has the right to rent in the UK before they move in, or face stiff fines. This means copies will be taken of either a tenant’s British passport, or any documentation that gives them the right to live in the UK.

Tenancy agreement

Time to sign for the property

As a reputable letting agent we will ask you to sign a rental contract. The most common is the Assured Shorthold Tenancy agreement, or AST. This is a contract between you the tenant and the landlord that usually runs for six to twelve months, after which both sides can give notice to quit. It also sets out the terms of how you rent the property and names the landlord including their address and contact details, how much the rent is, when it is due every month, how it will be paid and when rent increases are likely to happen.

Pay the deposit

Now to pay for the property

You will have to pay a deposit of between four and six weeks’ rent before you move in. Us or your landlord are in turn required by law to post the deposit with one of the three government-approved deposit schemes, give the tenant both a receipt for the deposit and tell them which scheme it’s registered with. As well as the deposit, tenants are asked to pay the first month’s rent in advance – rent is typically paid in advance normally, not in arrears.

Do an inventory list

Covering all parties

Just before you move in, Staffordshire Knot Estate Agents will bring in an inventory clerk to record and photograph all the fixtures, fittings and furniture within the property, as well as the condition of the paintwork, carpets, furniture and curtains. The purpose of this is so that the property when returned to the landlord, is returned in comparative condition and your deposit is held as a guarantee for that.

Get moving

It's yours

The date has been set and you just need to move your things in and start making memories in your new home.

That is the last step and you will only see us or the landlord next at either a pre-agreed inspection or upon departure so you it’s over to you now to make memories in your new home.


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