Lettings Terms and Conditions
Sets out the standard Terms and Conditions under the agreement in which Stirling Ackroyd will act for Clients as agents in the letting and management of residential properties
Sets out the standard Terms and Conditions under the agreement in which Stirling Ackroyd will act for Clients as agents in the letting and management of residential properties
This document sets out the standard Terms and Conditions under “the agreement” in which Stirling Ackroyd will act for Clients as agents in the letting and management of residential properties. The terms are, necessarily, quite detailed and precise, however if any further clarification is required, the Client is requested to contact a member of Stirling Ackroyd staff.
This contract constitutes an agreement between Stirling Ackroyd and the Landlord and both parties should ensure that any spoken or prior agreements have been incorporated. These terms will be legally binding on both parties. By instructing Stirling Ackroyd to act you will be bound by the agreement even if a signed contract is not returned.
In the Terms and Conditions, the following words and phrases shall have the following meanings unless the context requires otherwise: Use of the singular includes the plural. Use of the masculine includes the feminine.
“THE LANDLORD” OR “CLIENT” OR “YOU” OR “YOURS” means anyone owning an interest in the property, whether freehold or leasehold, entitling them to possession of it upon the termination or expiry of the tenancy and anyone who later owns the property.
“THE TENANT” means anyone entitled to possession of the property under a tenancy agreement.
“THE PROPERTY” means any part or parts of the building boundaries fences garden and outbuildings belonging to the Landlord. When the property is part of a larger building the premises includes the use of common access ways and facilities.
“INVENTORY” OR “INVENTORY AND/OR SCHEDULE OF CONDITION” means the document drawn up prior to the commencement of the tenancy by the Landlord or the inventory clerk, which includes the fixtures and fittings in the property.
“TERM” OR “TENANCY” means the fixed term of the Tenancy Agreement and any extension or continuation of the tenancy whether fixed term or periodic arising after the expiry of the original term.
“CASH DEPOSIT” means the money held by Stirling Ackroyd in a stakeholder capacity during the tenancy in case the tenant fails to comply with the terms of the Tenancy Agreement.
“STAKEHOLDER” means that deductions can only be made by Stirling Ackroyd from the deposit at the end of the tenancy with the written consent of both parties.
“TENANCY AGREEMENT” means the contract drawn up between the Landlord and the tenant specifying the obligations of the two parties.
“CALENDAR DAYOR “DAY” means any day of the year including weekends and public holidays.
“RELEVANT PERSON” means the person who paid the deposit or any part of it on behalf of a tenant.
“SCHEME” means an authorised tenancy deposit protection scheme.
“STATUTORY TIME LIMIT” means the time limit set out in the Housing Act 2004 (as amended).
“DEPOSIT REPLACEMENT SCHEME” OR “DRS” is a third-party insurance policy that can be used by a Tenant in replacement of a traditional “CASH DEPOSIT”. Deposit Replacement Scheme (DRS) is offered by Goodlord which is a trading name of Oh Goodlord Limited.
“WE”, “US” AND “TOWNENDS” means TRSL Limited whose registered office address is Unit 2, Wintersells Road, Byfleet, Surrey, KT14 7LF, registration number: 2653200.
2.1 Marketing Your Property
We will provide You with a Lettings appraisal of Your Property, advice on Letting, achievable Rent and types of Tenancy. Any marketing advice given, including advice regarding the achievable Rent, does not constitute formal advice or a valuation and is aimed at achieving the best Rent from a Tenant whose circumstances best meet Your requirements. As it is not a formal valuation, it must not be used for any other purpose other than deciding upon a marketing strategy. We will market the Property through Our network of offices, the Internet and other advertising mediums as appropriate, including marketing to Our existing database of Applicants.
We will also erect an advertising board, unless specifically instructed otherwise, which shall be maintained for the duration of the marketing period and up to fourteen Days after the commencement of the Tenancy, Renewal or Rent Review. It is the Landlord’s responsibility to advise whether boards are forbidden at a leasehold Property, due to local by-laws or if it is a conservation area.
2.2 Keys and Parking Permits
We require You to provide a full set of keys to all main and communal doors for each adult occupant at the start of the Tenancy plus a further set of keys if We are managing the Property. We reserve the right to purchase further keys (at Your expense) where necessary. You should also ensure that a full set of keys are available for use by the Tenant to any cellar, loft, garage, shed, outbuilding, gates, dustbin cupboard, post box, meter cupboard, balcony or window locks as well as any parking permits. Where parking permits or fobs are required You must provide details of the cost and where these can be obtained as they will be assumed to form part of the Tenancy unless advised by You in writing to the contrary. Garages that are located in communal block areas should be defined on the head lease or Property deeds and made available to the Tenant to prevent any misunderstandings of ownership.
Should you not provide Us with a full set of keys required for the tenant to enjoy full use of the Property, We will arrange best possible outcomes for Your Tenants and you will be liable for all costs and charges incurred in making the full use of the Property including the full list detailed above.
We operate a secure tag system which ensures that third parties cannot identify to which Property a set of keys belong. In the unlikely event that the keys are lost or unaccounted for, Our liability is strictly limited to the cost of cutting a new set of keys, unless any loss is due to the negligence or breach of contract by Us.
We will accompany applicants interested in viewing Your Property using the keys You have supplied Us or arranging to meet You at the Property with any applicants.
2.4 Withdrawal Costs
If You accept an offer from a prospective Tenant and later withdraw, the Tenant may be able to take legal action against You for any loss suffered and You may be required to meet the Tenant’s reasonable costs and expenses. If You instruct Us to proceed with a Tenancy on Your behalf and later withdraw, You agree by signing these Terms and Conditions to meet the reasonable costs and expenses incurred by Us, not limited to the cost of the preparation of the Tenancy Agreement, the Inventory, Tenant referencing, EPC and any other reasonable costs up to the sum of £1,000.00 (Inc. VAT).
2.5 Sole Agency and Multiple Agency
Where We are appointed to act on a sole agency basis, We will do so for a period of twelve weeks, unless otherwise agreed in writing. This means that the Landlord will be liable to pay commission to Us, in addition to any other costs or charges agreed, if at any time, unconditional contracts for the Letting of the Property have been signed.
It is important to note that if You instruct another agent to act for You as well as Us You will have to pay the commission due under this agreement to Us regardless of whether or not You also owe a fee to the other agent. If We are unable to let Your Property You may withdraw Your instructions by giving Us fourteen Days written notice to expire at the end of the twelve weeks of sole agency or any time thereafter.
Unless We receive Your specific instructions to the contrary, details of Your Property may be given on a commission sharing basis to other agents. This involves no additional expense to You and increases the chance of Letting the Property.
2.6 Multi Property Discount clause
Where We have discounted Your fee for instructing Us to Let more than one Property, We reserve the right to revert to Our published fees should You only have one property with Us at any one time. This will include properties currently let or on the market.
2.7 Legal Ownership
By signing these Terms and Conditions You warrant to Us that You are the owner of the Property, or otherwise are lawfully entitled to instruct Us to market the property and to enter into the Tenancy Agreement.
2.8 Power of Attorney and Lasting Power of Attorney
If You are not going to be available to negotiate the Terms of the Tenancy, sign the documents during the course of the Tenancy or settle the Deposit at the end of the Tenancy, then You will need to authorise someone to act on Your behalf by means of a Power of Attorney or Lasting Power of Attorney. We shall require a copy of this for Our records. We cannot take instructions from a third party (including renewals, Rent Reviews or maintenance issues) without this document, even from Your partner or parent (unless they are joint owners and have signed these Terms and Conditions). A simple letter stating someone can act on Your behalf will not be sufficient.
2.9 Instruction to act
We require You to have signed electronically Our Terms and Conditions of Business prior to commencement of Your Service. Our Terms and Conditions of Business will be sent to you digitally and We will not accept any manual or electronic alterations to Our service provision. The Service will be provided as is documented in these Terms and Conditions of Business.
3.1 All services, Our Services and Fees
Our fees are published on “Our Services and Fees”. All fees published in Great British Pounds (GBP) are inclusive of VAT and are subject to annual review. All fees published in percentage are excluding VAT and subject to review only if they are below Our published fees. We will inform You of any increases in fees in writing giving at least one month’s notice.
Any costs not on “Our Services and Fees” are contained within this document and relate only to Costs and Expenses incurred by Us or Termination Fees.
For our full Services and Fees visit our Landlord Fees page here.
3.2 LET ONLY SERVICE
The Let Only service is designed for competent Landlords who have experience in managing all aspects of the ongoing Tenancy themselves, but would like a professional approach to marketing and Tenant selection. Our Let Only services include all of the Marketing services detailed above and:
3.3 Lettings Process
We will negotiate any offers on Your behalf with applicants and obtaining consent from both parties to all the terms of the offer. We will fully reference Your Tenants via a credit referencing company. A company search can be undertaken if required and would be charged separately. If a credit reference company is used, We give no warranty as to either the accuracy or reliability of such references. If the references are not satisfactory but You decide to accept the Tenant, We will require an indemnity stating that You understand the risks associated with entering into the Tenancy. We cannot guarantee performance of the contract by the Tenant regardless of the result of the referencing and have no liability for any default by the Tenant. (see Our Services and Fees)
3.4 Right to Rent
We will conduct initial requirements under the Immigration Act 2014 “Right to Rent” by checking the immigration status of all applicants, as appropriate, before the initial move in however all subsequent Visa renewals will be the responsibility of the Landlord to obtain throughout the duration of the tenancy in accordance with Part Three, Chapter One of the Immigration Act 2014. (see Our Services and Fees)
3.5 Money Laundering, Proof of Identity and Proof of Residence
In order to comply with the 5th Anti Money Laundering Directive, Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 and the Money Laundering Regulations 2007, We are now required to verify Your ownership of the Property at the point of instruction and check proof of identity and one proof of residence once We have agreed an offer. The charge for this requirement is detailed in (Our Services and Fees).
3.6 Tenancy Agreement
Our documents are constantly reviewed and updated by legal advisers or ARLA Propertymark and can only be adapted by adding additional clauses to suit Your circumstances. We will assist you with Your queries where possible and advise you on tenant related matters regarding the Tenancy Agreement which is Your legal contract with Your Tenants. There may be times where We advise that You should consult Your own solicitor if You require further information about Your rights and obligations as a Landlord outside of the contract. The charge for this is detailed in (Our Services and Fees).
3.7 Pre-Tenancy Checks
Prior to commencement of the let You should check Your Property is ready to be occupied and fit for habitation. If You are unable to check the Property, We can facilitate this. The charge for this is detailed in (Our Services and Fees).
3.8 Collection & Processing of Initial Funds
We will inform the Tenant that it is their responsibility to ensure the Rent is paid on time and in full, in accordance with the terms agreed in Your Tenancy Agreement.
We will collect the Tenancy Deposit and Initial Rent from the Tenant. Where We are holding the Tenancy Deposit for the duration of the Tenancy it will be registered with my|deposits within thirty Days of receipt of funds.
The Letting fee will be deducted from the first month’s rent if sufficient funds are available. The remainder of fees must be settled 3 days prior to the commencement of the Tenancy commencement date.
You are responsible for all aspects of Your Tenants safety and it is Your responsibility to ensure all aspects of Lettings Legislation and Tenancy Compliance are met for the duration and any subsequent extensions to this Tenancy. Additionally, it is Your responsibility to keep up to date with legislative changes that affect both You, Your Tenant and the Property.
If Your Tenants serve their notice to Us directly, We will ensure that they have provided the correct notice period and advise you accordingly. We will re-market Your property immediately to try and ensure that You are not left with a vacant period.
3.9 Other Services and Charges
Should You require Us to carry out any additional services not included in the Let Only service, We will require payment in advance of any work being undertaken. We are unable to guarantee that We will be able to take Your instructions for this work to be carried out at busy times of year. Where this is the case, We will inform you and ask you to arrange these services yourself. (See Our Services and Fees)
3.10 RENT COLLECT SERVICE
The Rent Collect Service is for Landlords that want to manage the Property themselves but would like a professional approach to managing the financial aspects of Tenancy management. Our Rent Collect services include all of the Marketing services and Let Only services as above and:
3.11 Pre-Tenancy Checks
Prior to commencement of the Let We will check Your Property is ready to be occupied and fit for habitation.
3.12 Collection & Processing of Funds
We will instruct the Tenant to set up a standing order in time for their first payments and any payments thereafter. We will inform the Tenant it is their responsibility to ensure the Rent is paid on time and in full.
We monitor payments received and advise the Landlord of any non-payment within fourteen Days of the due date. We Collect the Rent for the period of the Tenancy and forward it to You less any deductions for Our fees and expenses.
The Landlord should be aware that We will only forward monies when We are in receipt of cleared funds and within ten working Days. Landlords should arrange a facility with their bank to account for changes in Rent payment date or non-payment of the Rent.
We contact the Tenant by telephone, email or letter at regular intervals if there is non-payment of the Rent; the first contact will not be made until after seven Days from the date upon which the Rent becomes due. Should legal action be required for the recovery of Rent, the Landlord will become responsible for instructing their solicitor as necessary and for any fees and/or charges made by them. We cannot take legal action for the Landlord as the Tenancy contract is between the Landlord and The Landlord’s Tenant, nor can We accept liability for arrears or breaches of covenant. We reserve the right to make a separate charge for time spent in connection with, preparation for, and attendance at, any court proceedings resulting from action taken against the Tenant.
We will no longer pursue rent arrears once a Tenancy has ended.
3.13 Duplicate Statements
We provide statements of account once monies are remitted. If further copies are subsequently requested, they will be forwarded at a separate cost per paper statement. (see Our Services and Fees)
3.14 Compliance Fee (Mandatory)
With the increasingly complicated regulations that Landlords are required to understand and comply with and to manage the ongoing changes to legislation, We have been investing in Our software, processes and people to ensure We are best placed to assist with all Your current and future Lettings compliance requirements. This Service includes:
This service is subject to the mandatory inclusion of the Compliance Fee (see Our Services and Fees)
3.15 Gas Safety Certification
We will arrange subject to Your instructions for the provision of the annual Gas Safety Certificate at an additional cost (see Our Services and Fees) unless otherwise supplied by You. Please note that We require a copy of a valid Gas Safety Certificate at least five working Days prior to commencement of a Tenancy. We reserve the right to organise for a Gas Safety Certificate to be carried out if a copy hasn’t been received within sufficient time prior to commencement of a Tenancy, the cost of which will be deducted from the first month’s Rent. We reserve the right to organise further Gas Safety checks upon point of Renewal or Rent Review for all Inclusive Management, Managed and Rent Collect Service properties, the cost of which will be deducted from rent received.
3.16 MANAGED SERVICE
Our Managed service is designed for Landlords who do not want day to day involvement with the Lettings or are residing overseas. The Managed service includes all of the points listed under the Marketing, Let Only and Rent Collect Services plus:
3.17 Right to Rent
Under the Immigration Act 2014 “Right to Rent” all subsequent Visa renewals will be the responsibility of the Landlord to obtain throughout the duration of the tenancy in accordance with Part Three, Chapter One of the Immigration Act 2014. As Your agent We will chase Visa renewals on Your behalf when they are due to expire.
Upon request We arrange to pay on Your behalf current outgoings such as insurance premiums, service charges and utilities, that We are made aware of, but it is the Landlord’s duty to inform all the appropriate companies and request that invoices are sent direct to Us.
We cannot accept responsibility for the adequacy or otherwise of any insurance cover, nor can We verify service or maintenance charges, demands or estimates. Although We use Our best endeavours and query any obvious discrepancies as We discover them, We must emphasise that We are entitled to accept and pay on Your behalf demands and accounts, which appear to be correct at the time of such payments. Any payments will be subject to having funds either from received Rent or Maintenance Reserve.
We will not be liable for any Rent or other liabilities payable by the Tenant or for any outgoings payable by Us on behalf of the Landlord if there are insufficient funds from Rent income to cover such expenses unless the loss is due directly to negligence or breach of contract of Us.
The Landlord agrees to reimburse and compensate Us as the agent against any costs, expenses or liabilities incurred or imposed on Us, provided they were incurred on the Landlord’s behalf in pursuit of Our normal duties. We will not arrange works prior to a Letting (whether requested by You or the intended Tenant) unless sufficient funds are held to cover the cost and the Landlord has requested Us to do the work in writing.
3.19 Reserve Funds
From the start of the Tenancy and during the full term of management, We will hold a maintenance reserve of £300.00 (Inc. VAT) from the Rent received, to enable Us to instruct works to be carried out at the Property, both in an emergency and in the normal course of management. This reserve will be subject to increase should Rent be received on either a quarterly, six monthly or annual basis. We reimburse this working balance out of net Rent received from the Tenant. Such funds are held in Our Landlord account and as the balance will fluctuate frequently no interest is payable. This working balance must be maintained, as We cannot service any outgoings exceeding the amount held by Us on Your account.
3.20 Repairs and Replacements
We shall investigate any defects which may come to Our notice during Our Managed Services, or any defect, which is brought to Our attention by the Tenant.
Work costing up to £300.00 (Inc. VAT) on any one item will be dealt with as they arise by Our Property Managers without further instruction from You. This is subject to Us holding sufficient monies on account.
Where works are likely to exceed £300.00 (Inc. VAT), as advised by the contractor, We will contact You prior to instructing works, except in the case of an emergency. When instructing contractors, We instruct as Agent of the Landlord. This means the Landlord is liable for all invoices and costs of the contractor. We will pay the contractor if cleared funds are held. If We do not hold sufficient money to pay the contractor then the liability for payment remains with the Landlord. We will ask you to make payment to Us upfront to cover the cost of the invoice. If you fail to do this then full payment must be made direct to the contractor. By signing the Terms and Conditions the Landlord acknowledges and agrees to this obligation.
Where possible We enlist the services of GD&M, who also form part of the Stirling Ackroyd Group of companies. GD&M may be used as Our preferred contractor for all managed maintenance issues reported to Us by Your Tenant that are within the spend limit as noted above, unless there is an emergency out of hours that requires Us to ensure Your Property is safeguarded.
Where repairs/renewals, replacements, necessary redecorations etc. are liable to cost more than £500.00 (Inc. VAT) We will wherever practical, submit to You two quotations, the exception being in the case of an emergency. Upon Your acceptance of any quotations, providing that We are in funds, We would then instruct the works to commence. If works are subject to quotation, GD&M or two other contractors will be enlisted to provide this. We reserve the right to instruct any works for repairs or wants of repair which are the Landlord’s contractual or statutory obligation under the Terms of the Tenancy Agreement.
We will endeavour to use any contractors that You have specifically nominated for repair work at the Property but cannot guarantee to do so, provided the contractor provides Us with a current copy of their professional qualification and public liability insurance. We reserve the right to use Our own contractors if We are unable to contact the Landlord’s contractor or where the contractor does not respond to Our request within a reasonable timescale or in an emergency.
Any Landlord that wishes to use contractors that are not recommended by Us may do so by confirmation in writing to Us. All contractors are instructed on behalf of the Landlord, the cost of which You remain liable for.
We will arrange access for contractors. Where We are required to accompany contractors, utility companies etc. or when the Tenant is unable to meet a contractor at a mutually convenient time at the Property, this shall incur a separate hourly charge which will be inclusive of traveling time and which will be advised to the Landlord in advance. In the event that the Tenant refuses access to the Property, regardless of previous notice having been given and the Terms of the Tenancy, We will not be able to use Our set of keys for access.
3.21 Deposits Managed Landlords (also see section 5.0)
At the end of the Tenancy where the deposit is covered by my|Deposits Stirling Ackroyd will do the following:
We will carry out the following on the Client’s behalf:
On receipt of the check-out report We obtain costings and estimates, if appropriate, and distribute them to the parties concerned. We will then submit the proposed deductions to both Client and Tenant requesting agreement in writing for the Deposit to be apportioned as per the schedule.
We will negotiate with the former Tenant on the Client’s behalf, agree deductions and forward the balance of the Deposit to the Tenant. If deductions cannot be agreed the Alternative Dispute Resolution procedure shown in (Section 5) will be followed. We are only able to provide this service if You have supplied an Independent Professional Inventory.
3.22 INCLUSIVE MANAGEMENT SERVICE (only available on Sole Agency for a minimum term of 24 months)
Our Inclusive Management Service is designed for Landlords who want as little as possible involvement with the Letting and management of the Property or are residing overseas. The Inclusive Management Service includes all of the points listed under the Marketing, Let Only, Rent Collect and Managed Services plus:
The following services are included as part of the service only if the let commences. Should We arrange for these works to be carried out and Your Property is not successfully let by Us, you will be charged the cost of these services We have absorbed in line with Our Managed Service (see Our Services and Fees).
Where We undertake to provide and pay for compliance certification (The Gas Safety, EICR & EPC) and inventory services listed below, We will use Our own approved contractors/suppliers only. We are not able to use Your contractors under this service. You will be liable for the cost of any remedial or repair work required to ensure Your Property is fully compliant.
3.23 Gas Safety Certification
Landlords must comply with The Gas Safety (Installation and Use) (Amendment) Regulations 2018
We will include the arrangement and provision for the annual Gas Safety Certificate using one of Our approved contractors and cover the cost of the certificate. You will be liable for any remedial or repair works required to ensure Your Property is fully compliant.
3.24 Electrical Safety Standards
Landlords must comply with the Electrical Safety Standards in the Private Rented Sector (England) Regulations 2020.
We will include the arrangement and provision of the Electrical Installation Conditions report (EICR) using one of Our approved contractors and cover the cost of the report (one every five years if required) should you not have an up to date one. You will be liable for any remedial or repair works required to ensure Your Property is fully compliant.
We will employ one of Our approved contractors/suppliers on Your behalf an Inventory company to produce and check the Inventory at the commencement and termination of the Tenancy. We cannot be held responsible for any error or omission on the part of the Inventory company unless it is due to Our negligence or breach of contract. The fee for compiling the Inventory itself and for both the Check-In of the Inventory at the start of the Tenancy and the Check-Out of the Inventory at the end of the Tenancy is included within this service.
3.26 Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)
The EPC needs to be in place prior to the commencement of marketing the Property. The Landlord accepts that should the EPC not be provided to the Agent, the property cannot be marketed, and this is in accordance with government legislation. The Agent will include the EPC on Property details which are available to persons viewing the Property. The cost of providing an up to date EPC using one of Our approved contractors every 10 years is included within this service.
From the 1st April 2018 all private rented properties must achieve an energy efficiency rating of at least an E on their EPC, to meet the minimum standards. Since 1 April 2020, The Landlord can no longer let or continue to let properties covered by the MEES Regulations (Minimum Level of Energy Efficiency’ standard) if they have an EPC rating below E, unless they have a valid exemption in place.
If you are currently planning to let a property with an EPC rating of F or G, you need to improve the property’s rating to E, or register an exemption, before you enter into a new tenancy. If you are currently letting a property with an EPC rating of F or G, and you haven’t already taken action, you must improve the property’s rating to E immediately, or register an exemption.
3.27 Money Laundering, Proof of Identity and Proof of Residence
In order to comply with the 5th Anti Money Laundering Directive, Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 and the Money Laundering Regulations 2007, We are now required to verify Your ownership of the Property at the point of instruction and check proof of identity and one proof of residence once We have agreed an offer. This service is included for Our Inclusive Management Landlords.
3.28 Licence Handling Service
Our administration charge for assisting and advising on local authority licensing applications is included within this service. The Landlord will still be responsible for paying the local authority licencing fee.
3.29 Property Inspection
Once a Tenancy has commenced We will arrange one Property inspection per year using one of Our approved contractors included in this service. The Property inspection is not carried out by qualified surveyors and We offer no guarantees on any structural or specialised issues at the Property.
The inspection will be a walk though of the Property to identify any obvious issues that may have occurred during the Tenancy. In the event of Us identifying routine maintenance or anything that alerts Us to a concern when completing the inspection, We will discuss and agree actions with you in line with the Tenancy Agreement conditions. In some cases, We will recommend further inspections either by a qualified surveyor or Your insurance company.
3.30 Vacant Management Service Outgoings
Should you require this service it is upon written request on each occasion the Property becomes vacant. Upon request and Us holding sufficient funds for You. We will arrange to pay on Your behalf current outgoings such as insurance premiums, service charges and utilities, that We are made aware of, but it is the Landlord’s duty to inform all the appropriate companies and request that invoices are sent direct to Us. We will not accept liability of any charges accrued due to late payment as ultimate responsibly of payment of service charges/ground rents remain Yours.
3.31 The Following Services are also included for Our Inclusive Management Landlords
We do not offer Rent and Legal Protection service included in any service proposition. This is only available as a separate service with our Rent Collect, Managed and Inclusive Management Service.
4.1 Rent and Legal Protection Service
The Rent and Legal Protection service (RLP) is available at an additional cost within the Rent Collect, Managed and Inclusive Management Services. The Landlord agrees not to take any action which may invalidate the protection. A copy of the acknowledgment of agreement will be provided to the Landlord upon it being taken out. In the event of such an action, the Landlord agrees to indemnify Us against any losses suffered as a result. As set out in Our Services Charges sheet, the costs of the insurance if taken up will be deducted from incoming Rent. In the event that Rent is not being received from the Tenant, the responsibility for the payment will be with the Landlord.
If payment is not made then We take no responsibility for the protection vitiating as a result.
If in the event You agree to a Tenancy Agreement with a Tenant for Your Property that has failed referencing checks, You will not be eligible to the Rent and Legal Protection service offered, with any of our services. Exemptions may apply subject to referencing criteria.
This product is not available for Properties where Rental amounts are over £5000 per calendar month. (See Our Service Fees for pricing).
By selecting this additional option to compliment Your Inclusive Management, Managed or Rent Collect Services You will not be able to use Your own legal agreement as the agreement has to meet the exacting standards outlined by Our insurance providers and may fall below Our service standards.
RENT & LEGAL PROTECTION the following definitions apply: Insurance Policy Means Our insurance policy, underwritten by DAS, of which We are the sole policyholder; Service Means Our rent and legal protection service more fully described in this clause. (for Rent Collection and Managed and Inclusive Management Properties only). We will ask Our insurer to note Your interest on the Insurance Policy which will mean that You will be provided with the protections listed below That means that if Your Tenant defaults on their Rent payments, for example, You can inform Us and We will make a claim under the Insurance Policy. If the claim is successful, We will pay any sums recovered that are due to You. The Service includes protection for:
The Service is only available providing Tenants have passed satisfactory references approved by a referencing agent appointed by Us. The Service is still provided in the event that the full sum of Rent is paid in advance by the Tenants prior to the Tenancy start date because it provides You with protection against breaches of contract which enable grounds for possession. the cost to You, the Landlord, will be deducted from Your Monthly Rental income commencing the first Month of the Tenancy. The charge will be: £25.00 inclusive of VAT per Month for Rents up to £2,500.00 per Month; £45.00 inclusive of VAT per Month for Rents between £2,501.00 and £5,000.00 per calendar Month; The Service is not available to Landlords where the Rental amount for the Property exceeds £5000.00 per calendar Month.
The Service will automatically be renewed annually. If You decide to cancel the Service at any time, a minimum of one Month’s advance notice in writing is required prior to the renewal date. This can be sent via email to Us at RLP@ stirlingackroyd.com We will require up to five Working Days to action Your cancellation request. If the Tenant falls into arrears and You are receiving any of the benefits of the Service You will not be entitled to cancel the Service, as per clause (this clause) until such time that either the Tenant puts Us in funds or possession of the Property is taken. If the Tenant has not paid the full Rent due within 31 Days of the Rent due date, then the late Rent payments (equating to two Months) will be payable to You within a 75 Day period from when the first full Month’s Rent payment was initially due. Monthly payments, subject to a limited indemnity of £100,000, will then be paid one Month in arrears, on an on-going basis until such time that either the Tenant puts Us in funds or possession of the Property is taken.
Payments will be made subject to any deductions detailed within Our Agency Agreement and Our Schedule of Fees, such as Our Management charge and contractor invoices. The Service is fully transferrable to ensure continuous protection even when the Tenants change and the property is re-let. If legal representation is necessary, We will appoint a preferred law firm as the legal representative and full co-operation from You as may be required by Us or the appointed legal representative. Costs for repossession of the Property will not be covered by the Service unless the Property is let under one of the following agreements: An Assured Shorthold Tenancy under the 1988 Housing Act. A Company Residential Tenancy (Company let) created after the 28th of February 1997 where the Tenant is a Private Limited Company (Ltd) or Public Limited Company (Plc) and the Property is let purely for residential purposes to an employee of the Tenant. stirlingackroyd.com A Law of Contract Agreement not governed by the Housing Act 1988.
If you are an existing Landlord completing and signing this new Terms of Business and You request to add the Service mid-Tenancy i.e. after the commencement of the Tenancy Agreement, You will only benefit from the Service after 60 Days but will be subject to charges as per Our Schedule of Fees. The Tenant must not accrue any Rent arrears which have not been paid in full, before the 60 Day timescale, or the Service will be cancelled on Day 61.
The service does not include:
For the avoidance of doubt, Stirling Ackroyd is not authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority. The Service offered by Us is a contractual guarantee, but not an insurance policy
5.1 If the Client intends to hold the Deposit themselves (only available to Rent Collect and Let Only Landlords)
If You/the Landlord decide(s) to hold the Deposit You must tell Us at the point of offer, prior to the Tenancy Agreement being drafted and sent for signing. Informing Us after the Tenancy agreements have been sent for signing may incur an additional charge. We will arrange for the Tenant to forward the Deposit direct to Your bank account and require You to confirm to Us that cleared funds are received in writing prior to Us releasing keys to Your tenants. You must then register it with a Tenancy Deposit protection Scheme within thirty Days of the Deposit being received by Us or by You if the Tenancy is an Assured Shorthold Tenancy (“AST”).
If the Tenancy is an AST You must ensure that You comply with the rules of the relevant Scheme, including serving on the Tenant the Prescribed Information, including any terms and conditions, leaflets or other information required to be given to the Tenant or Relevant Person.
If You fail to protect the Deposit within the statutory time frames the Tenant can take legal action against You in the County Court. The Court will make an order stating that You must pay the Deposit back to the Tenant or lodge it with the custodial Scheme which is known as the Deposit Protection Scheme (“DPS”). In addition, a further order will be made requiring You to pay compensation to the Tenant of an amount between one and three times the Deposit the sum being at the discretion of the judge.
You will be unable to serve or enforce a valid Section 21 Notice on Your Tenant until You have protected it and served the Prescribed Information or You have returned the Deposit in full (or the agreed balance of it) to the Tenant, or the court has disposed of any proceedings relating to the return of the Deposit. We have no liability for any loss suffered if You fail to comply.
If You instruct Us that You do not want Us to protect a Deposit for an AST, We shall not be liable for any loss suffered or cost incurred by You if You fail to comply with Your obligations to protect the Deposit and give prescribed information together with other relevant documents. You must pay Us for any loss or inconvenience suffered or costs incurred by Us if You fail to comply with those obligations. This clause will not apply if the reason for Your failure is because We failed to send You the Deposit within 20 Days of receiving it.
The Landlord warrants that all the information he has provided to the Agent is correct to the best of his knowledge and belief. If the Landlord provides incorrect information to the Agent which causes the Agent to suffer loss or causes legal proceedings to be taken the Landlord agrees to reimburse and compensate the Agent for all losses suffered.
5.2 Cash Deposit
Unless otherwise instructed this amount will be equivalent to five weeks’ Rent. We hold the Deposit as stakeholder which means We will not release the cash Deposit to either party without the written agreement of both parties. We are not permitted to pay out the Deposit at the end of the Tenancy if there is any dispute between Landlord and Tenant. It must either be resolved by agreement between the parties, by my|deposits or by the court. Should You require Us to deal with the Deposit on Your behalf at the end of the Tenancy, when not using the Managed or Inclusive Management Service this can be arranged subject to a professional Inventory being in place. (see Our Services and Fees)
5.3 Alternative Dispute Resolution for Deposit Disputes (ADR)
As a regulated and bonded Agent We endeavour to provide a fair and equitable Tenancy Agreement and service to both Our Landlord and the Tenant. All Our Tenancy Agreements, where We are to hold the Deposit during the Term of the Tenancy, are included in the approved my|deposits Tenancy Deposit Protection Scheme. A certificate is available showing details of the Deposit protection, a copy of which must be given to Your Tenant. We hold the Deposit under the terms of my|deposits: my|deposits 1st Floor Premiere House, Elstree Way, Borehamwood, Hertfordshire, WD6 1JH.
If the Tenant notifies a dispute to the agent and reasonable attempts have been made to resolve any differences of opinion the Tenant should be advised to raise a dispute with my|deposits. In the event no dispute is notified to the agent by my|deposits, the agent will retain the disputed amount until agreement has been reached or the Deposit has been determined by an appointed adjudicator or by order of the court.
On notification of a dispute with my|deposits the agent will lodge the dispute amount with the Scheme. We will notify You that a dispute has been raised and You are to in turn, provide Us with evidence to upload to MyDeposits on your behalf, to support your claim to the Deposit. If you are a Landlord utilising our Managed or Inclusive Managed service, we will prepare this evidence on your behalf. If the Landlord wishes to provide any evidence they should do so through the agent within the timescales provided by the Scheme. The statutory rights of either the Landlord or the Tenant to take legal action against the other party remain unaffected.
It is not compulsory for the parties to refer the dispute to my|deposits for adjudication. The parties may, if either party chooses to do so, seek the decision of the court. However, this process may take longer and may incur further costs. Judges may, because it is a condition of the Tenancy Agreement signed by both parties, refer the dispute back to my|deposits for adjudication. If the parties do agree that the dispute should be resolved by my|deposits, they must accept the decision of my|deposits as final and binding.
If there is a dispute We must remit to my|deposits the full Deposit, less any amounts already agreed by the parties and paid over to them. This must be done within ten working Days of being told that a dispute has been registered whether or not You or We want to contest it. Failure to do so will not delay the adjudication but my|deposits will take appropriate action to recover the Deposit and discipline Us.
We must co-operate with my|deposits in the adjudication of the dispute and follow any recommendations concerning the method of the resolution of the dispute.
By signing the Terms and Conditions the Landlord agrees to abide by the regulations of my|deposits of which We are a member. (see Our Services and Fees)
In the event of either a dispute being notified to the Client or Stirling Ackroyd or where no agreement has been received in writing, Stirling Ackroyd will retain the Deposit in their Client account until agreement has been reached, unless a request by my|deposits that they lodge the monies with them. Stirling Ackroyd can release the monies claimed by the Client at their discretion, subject to them being satisfied that all attempts to seek agreement have been made and that the Tenant has been given every opportunity to raise a dispute with my|Deposits and the Client agrees to sign a letter of indemnity to protect Stirling Ackroyd against a subsequent claim by the Tenant. Stirling Ackroyd is under no obligation to arrange this particularly if We have reasonable suspicions that the Deposit deductions will be disputed at a later date. In this event, the Claimant will be required to seek legal advice as to a claim on the Deposit through the courts.
5.4 Deposit Replacement Scheme
Relating to the letting of residential property by the Letting Agent on behalf of the Landlord.
6.1 Tenancy Renewals
Towards the end of the initial fixed term We will contact You to find out if the Tenancy should be renewed or Rent Reviewed and to agree any Renewal or Rent Review instructions. We will review the rent and advise You if a rent increase is possible or desirable depending upon current market conditions. You must confirm to Us in writing if You wish the Tenancy to be renewed, extended or notice served. We do not serve notice on the Tenant unless You instruct Us to do so in writing. If You prefer to negotiate directly with the Tenant Our fees continue to be payable for the duration of the time that any person forming the Tenant introduced by Us or as a result of Our introduction resides in the Property.
We will negotiate between the two parties if requested. We will prepare the Renewal or Rent Review document for both parties in line with fees and charges as outlined in (Our Services and Fees), including drafting any clauses agreed between the parties varying the Terms of the original Tenancy. The Renewal or Rent Review documents will be sent to both parties for signature.
Arrange for the Tenant to amend their payment method for the revised rent if applicable.
We try to ensure both parties sign the documentation by the start date of the new period of the Tenancy, however, if the Tenant fails to return the Renewal or Rent Review documents the Tenancy will continue as a periodic Tenancy until either party gives notice in writing. Our commission will be payable whether the Tenancy continues as a fixed term or a periodic Tenancy whether or not We are instructed to act on Your behalf. While We will make every effort to obtain the signed Renewal or Rent Review documents, We have no liability if the Tenant fails to return them.
Documents are signed digitally via DocuSign and You will receive a document signed and executed by all parties.
6.2 Fixed Term Terminations
Where no fixed term Renewal or Rent Review agreement is entered into, Tenant(s) may surrender the keys and possession on the last day of the tenancy. We shall not accept any responsibility or liability for Your losses in this situation.
6.3 Renewal or Rent Review Fees
If Our fees are not paid within seven Days of the commencement of the Renewal or Rent Review Tenancy, interest shall accrue on a Day to Day basis on the sum due at the rate of 4% above the base rate of the Bank of England. If the Tenant has an Assured Shorthold Tenancy and this continues to roll on, on a monthly basis, (i.e. a periodic Tenancy) then the rent can only be lawfully increased on an annual basis if We serve the Tenant with a valid notice under Section 13(2) of the Housing Act 1988.
This notice advises the Tenant that they have a right to challenge the increase by serving You with a counter notice and ultimately referring the increase to the First Tier Tribunal. This could result in a hearing.
If the Tenant makes a counter proposal We will ask You whether You wish to accept it or whether You wish to pursue the issue to a hearing. If You want to do the latter We can arrange for solicitors to act on Your behalf. You will be responsible for their charges.
Renewal or Rent Review fees due will be collected in line with Your payment plan and as We collected Our fee for the initial Tenancy Term.
Where there is no agreed term for a Renewal or Rent Review, the Renewal or Rent Review Commission fee is charged as a percentage of the total rental value as if the Renewal or Rent Review would be for the same duration as the Initial Agreement. If the initial term exceeded twelve month you will be charged the twelve month fee annually in advance.
In the event of the Tenancy being terminated, it is agreed that We will be re-instructed to find replacement Tenants on a Sole Agency basis for a minimum period of twelve weeks from the date of notice being served.
Any balance of Renewal or Rent Review fees paid in advance in the event of the Tenancy being terminated will be off set against the fee due when We have found replacement Tenants.
Refunds on any Balance of Renewal or Rent Review fees paid in advance will only be paid at the end of the twelve-week Sole Agency period, should We not find replacement Tenants. Should you decline any suitable tenants who would pass Our reference criteria and offer market rent, no refund will be paid.
7.1 Gas Safety Certification
Landlords must comply with The Gas Safety (Installation and Use) (Amendment) Regulations 2018
We can arrange provision for the renewal of the annual Gas Safety Certificate at a separate cost at Your written request providing funds are available. Please note that We require a copy of a valid Gas Safety Certificate at least five working Days prior to commencement of a Tenancy.
We reserve the right to organise for a Gas Safety Certificate to be carried out if a copy hasn’t been received within sufficient time but no less than one week prior to commencement of a Tenancy, the cost of which will be deducted from the first month’s Rent.
7.2 Electrical Safety Standards
Landlords must comply with the Electrical Safety Standards in the Private Rented Sector (England) Regulations 2020.
We can arrange provision for the renewal of the Electrical Installation Conditions report (EICR) at a separate cost at Your written request providing funds are available. Please note that We require a copy of a satisfactory EICR prior to commencement of a Tenancy.
We reserve the right to organise for an EICR to be carried out if a satisfactory report hasn’t been received within sufficient time prior to commencement of a Tenancy, the cost of which will be deducted from the first month’s Rent.
7.3 Furniture and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations 1988 as Amended
The above regulations were amended in 1993 and have set new levels of fire resistance for domestic upholstered furniture and furnishings. It is now an offence to ‘supply’ in the course of a business any furniture, which does not comply with the regulations. This includes supplying furniture as part of a Let residential Property. The regulations apply to sofas, beds, bedheads, children’s furniture, garden furniture suitable for use in a dwelling, scatter cushions, and pillows, and other similar upholstered items. All furnished Property available for rental must contain furniture that complies with the regulations. Any additional or replacement furniture supplied must comply with the regulations. Any furniture manufactured after March 1990 is likely to comply but if the appropriate labels are not affixed to the furniture, compliance is in doubt and checks should be made with the manufacturer. By signing the Terms and Conditions the Client confirms that the Property complies with the above regulations.
7.4 Smoke Alarms and Carbon Monoxide Alarms
As from the 1st October 2022 under “The Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm (England) Regulations 2022” it is a requirement of the Landlord to ensure that there is a working smoke alarm on each storey of the Property and a working carbon monoxide alarm (CO) in any room containing a fixed combustion appliance (excluding gas ovens and hobs). Rooms containing gas or oil appliance such as a Gas boiler will now need a carbon monoxide alarm (CO) and these tested as working on the Day a new tenancy commences. Where Stirling Ackroyd manages a Property the Landlord agrees that Stirling Ackroyd will install and fit such alarms to any Property which does not comply with the requirements of the legislation and will arrange for a contractor to visit the Property and test the alarms in accordance with the manufactures instructions and deduct the relevant cost from Your rent account. Where the Landlord arranges for their own installation or opts for the Let Only or Rent Collect service, the Landlord will be responsible for ensuring they comply with the statutory obligation.
7.5 Legionnaires Disease
In order to comply with the Health and Safety Executives Code of Practice, Landlords must ensure the Health and Safety of Tenants by keeping the Property safe and free from hazards. The L8 Approved Code of Practice (3rd edition) (ACOP) establishes a requirement for Landlords of both domestic and business premises to assess the risks from exposure of Legionella to their Tenants.
Whilst there are practical and proportionate measures Landlords may undertake there remains a ‘duty’ on the Landlords part to assess the risk from exposure to Legionella. By signing these Terms of Business the Landlord acknowledges his responsibility for the safety of the Tenant at the premises, confirms he has considered all risks regarding Legionnaires Disease and has taken prudent steps to document and keep a record for their own purposes.
If You do not feel competent, or inclined to do so then Stirling Ackroyd will undertake this for You, by arranging for a professionally trained and accredited assessor to carry out an assessment, providing You with an appropriate record of such, deducting the cost from the Landlords account.
7.6 Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)
The Landlord must provide Us with a valid Energy Performance Certificate (EPC). The EPC needs to be in place prior to the commencement of marketing the property. The Landlord accepts that should the EPC not be provided to the Agent, the property cannot be marketed, and this is in accordance with government legislation. The Agent will include the EPC on property details which are available to persons viewing the property and reserves the right to charge an administration fee for arranging the EPC in the event of the Landlord failing to provide one. The cost of which will be deducted from the first month’s Rent.
7.7 Landlord repairing obligations
Section 11 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985 as amended by Section 116 of the Housing Act 1988 places and obligation on Landlords to keep in repair and proper working order the installations for the supply of water, gas, electricity and sanitation including basins sinks, baths and sanitary conveniences and the installations of space heating and heating of water.
7.8 Safety Standards for Internal Blinds and Curtains
It is a legal requirement that all blinds and curtains which include a cord or chain must comply with the recently published safety standards. Legally all blinds and curtains must have built-on safety systems. Blinds and curtains that are already fitted to a Property must be made safe or replaced.
7.9 Retaliatory evictions
Under the Deregulation Act 2015, measures were bought in to stop Landlords evicting Tenants who reported issues with the Property rather than fixing them. Under an AST, if poor state of repair is reported to a Landlord and a reasonable outcome isn’t established within 14 Days, the Tenant may inform the council who could then stop the Landlord serving a Section 21 notice for six months, as well as issuing an improvement notice.
It is the Landlord’s responsibility to ensure that Stirling Ackroydare informed of any asbestos fixtures and fittings within the Property or any outbuildings included in the Tenancy Agreement. This ensures that contractors are properly instructed.
7.11 Finance Act 2003
From 1st December 2003 the liability for Landlords to pay Stamp Duty was abolished. The liability is purely that of the Tenant if the rent after deduction of the discount exceeds £125,000.
7.12 Defective Premises Act 1972
Under the Defective Premises Act 1972 the Landlord is liable as owner for any occurrence originating from a defect or lack of repair that the Landlord knows of or should have been aware of. If the Tenant suffers loss due to the defect the Landlord will be liable to compensate the Tenant. Stirling Ackroyd assume that the Property has no defect unless advised to the contrary. If You require a survey to be carried out please advise. Many building insurance policies provide cover against claims under this act, but You should check Your own policy to ensure You are covered.
7.13 Appliances left within a property
The Landlord must provide Us with copies of all manuals, maintenance agreements and guarantees for all the appliances in the Property. If the Landlord fails to do so and We instruct another contractor, the Landlord is liable for the costs incurred.
Unless instructed to the contrary We will employ on Your behalf an Inventory company to produce and check the Inventory at the commencement and termination of the Tenancy. This is a compulsory requirement if We are providing Our Rent Collect, Managed and Inclusive Management Service. We cannot be held responsible for any error or omission on the part of the Inventory company unless it is due to Our negligence or breach of contract. The fee for compiling the Inventory itself and for both the Check-In of the Inventory at the start of the Tenancy and the Check-Out of the Inventory at the end of the Tenancy is the responsibility of the Landlord. The appropriate sums will be charged to the Landlord at the commencement of the Tenancy, or at the commencement and end of the Tenancy.
7.15 Property Buildings and Contents Insurance
Your Property and the contents must be comprehensively insured to include third party liability. You must inform Your insurers of Your intention to let the Property as failure to do so may mean rejection of any future claim, because if a material point is not disclosed to the insurer the insurance contract may be void. We must have a copy of the relevant schedules of the policy including any conditions imposed by the insurer for an empty Property to give to the Tenant at the start of the Tenancy, otherwise any conditions contained therein, the Tenant will not have to comply with which may render the policy void.
If You are a leaseholder, You will normally require the consent from Your superior Landlord, freeholder or their managing agent before You can sub-let the Property to a Tenant. In giving consent the superior Landlord or their managing agent may require You to provide references for the Tenant, as well as for You and the Tenant to enter into an agreement to observe the covenants contained in Your head lease known as a licence. A fee may be charged for granting consent to sub-let which will be Your liability. We will need a copy of the relevant sections of the head lease together with any schedules referred to therein so that We can attach a copy of this to the Tenancy Agreement. If the Tenant is not given a copy of the relevant sections of the head lease You cannot impose any obligations contained in it upon the Tenant. This could lead You to breach the Terms of Your head lease.
7.17 The Homes (Fitness for Human Habitation) Act 2018
The Homes (Fitness for Human Habitation) Act 2018 this Act entitles a tenant to take legal action against a landlord if the Property is not deemed to be fit for human habitation. If a judge finds in favour of the Tenant an order will be imposed upon a landlord stating works must be carried out. The Landlord may have all the tenant’s legal costs awarded against him in addition to his own costs.
We will endeavour to ensure that the Property is fit for human habitation if the Rent Collect, Managed or Inclusive Management service is used. Otherwise it will be the responsibility of the Landlord. We have no liability for failure to comply with current legislation. Homes Fit for Human Habitation checks can be carried out by Us for Landlords opting for other services at an additional fee (see Our Services and fees).
7.18 Licence Handling Service
We will help you understand Your local authority requirements, including what type of licence is needed. We will require information from you in order to complete the licence application. Should We require any further documentation or certificates, Our contractors are at hand to prepare these for an additional fee.
Our service does not stop once the application has been submitted. We will liaise directly with the local authority where necessary until the final licence is issued. This may involve providing further information, challenging a draft licence or arranging an inspection of the Property upon the council’s request. The cost of this services is detailed in (see Our Services and Fees)
7.19 Compliance Fee (Mandatory for Rent Collect and Managed Service)
With the increasingly complicated regulations that Landlords are required to understand and comply with and to manage the ongoing changes to legislation, We have been investing in Our software, processes and people to ensure We are best placed to assist with all Your current and future Lettings compliance requirements. This Service includes:
The cost of this is detailed in Our Services and Fees page here.
8.1 Client Money Protection
We can confirm that We have full Client Money Protection which is held through Our regulatory body The Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA Propertymark).
To support You in meeting Your obligations under UK tax legislation and so that We as Your agent can report to HMRC as required by them We will provide a number of services to You.
8.3 Oversees Landlords Tax
We have a legal obligation to the HMRC to withhold tax at source for all Landlords who reside outside the country for more than 6 months a year who do not hold an NRL1 approval number. If you do hold a valid certificate, notify the HMRC with Our details, provided below, and once We have received the official letter directly from them, We can arrange to release any tax We still hold that hasn’t been paid over to them.
Our details for the HMRC: NRL1 number is NA058989 for Stirling Ackroyd.
Our address is: 2 Wintersells Road, Byfleet, Surrey, KT14 7LF.
If you don’t hold a certificate but would like to apply for one in order to receive the rental income with no tax deducted by Your agent; the link for filling out Your form online at https://www.gov.uk/tax-uk-income-live-abroad/rent.
Once the HMRC receive Your notification, they will write to Us and We can release any held funds upon receipt. If you are joint owners, all owners need to apply individually.
8.4 Interest, Commission and Referral Fees
Any interest accrued on Landlord’s money which We hold will be retained by Us to cover bank and administration charges etc. Any commission earned while acting on behalf of the Landlord will be retained by Us. Any referral fees paid to Us while acting on the Landlord’s behalf will be retained by Us.
8.5 Late Payment
If Our fees are not paid within seven Days of the commencement of the Tenancy, interest shall accrue on a Day to Day basis on the sum due at the rate of 4% above the base rate of the Bank of England.
8.6 Rent and Rent Remittances
We will agree with You a Rent to be quoted to a potential Tenant. Unless specifically agreed otherwise this will include all payments for which You are responsible, such as ground Rent and service charges. It is normal for the Tenant to take over responsibility for the gas and electricity, council tax, telephone accounts, charges for water, including sewage disposal and environmental services; and to pay for any other fuel used. Should any payment for Rent be dishonoured or delayed after funds have been remitted to the Landlord then the Landlord agrees to reimburse Us within ten working Days.
If Rent is paid by the council and later it is determined that the Tenant was not entitled to the housing benefit that was paid, the council can attempt to recover the monies paid out (‘Claw Back’). Should Rent be paid to Us from the local authority as Housing Benefit, the Landlord agrees to reimburse Us for any monies paid out by Us as a result of ‘Claw Back’ of the Housing Benefit. Rent is usually paid to Us by bank transfer or standing order. We undertake to forward the balance of the Rent, less any deductions for commission, expenses, contractors’ invoices etc. within ten working Days of the receipt of cleared funds into Our account. However, We are not liable for any loss which may occur as a result of any delay in making payment to You. We strongly advise that You arrange a facility with Your bank to take account of different Rent payment dates or late payment or non-payment of the Rent.
Our fees and any other charges for services We provide are subject to VAT at the prevailing rate unless they are already shown as inclusive of VAT.
9.1 Serving of Notices
The provisions for the service of notices are that if either party delivers by hand any notices or documents which are necessary under the Terms and Conditions, or any Act of Parliament to the other party by 5pm at the last known address of the other party; the documents or notices will be deemed delivered on the next working Day which excludes Saturdays, Sundays and Bank Holidays; or if any documents or notices are sent by registered, or recorded delivery post the documents will be deemed delivered upon proof of delivery being obtained; or if the documents or notices are sent by ordinary first class post addressed to the other party at the last known address of the other party; the documents or notices will be deemed delivered two working Days later, which excludes Saturdays, Sundays and Bank Holidays. The address for service for the Landlord will be the contact address specified in the Terms and Conditions and the address for service for Us will be Unit 2, Wintersells Road, Byfleet, Surrey, KT14 7LF.
If Your tenants decide to leave, We will check that they have provided the correct notice period. We will re-market Your property immediately to try and ensure that you are not left with a vacant period.
9.3 End of tenancy and Schedule of Deductions
At the termination of a Tenancy, the appropriate Inventory company should prepare a Check-Out of the Property. Any missing items or damage which may have occurred during the Tenancy is recorded on the schedule, copies of which are sent to both the Landlord and Tenant who will endeavour to mutually agree what amount, if any, is to be deducted from the Cash Deposit.
If the Tenancy is an Assured Shorthold Tenancy (AST) You must ensure that You comply with the rules of the relevant Scheme, including serving on the Tenant the Prescribed Information including any terms and conditions, leaflets or other information required to be given to the Tenant or Relevant Person. If You fail to protect the Deposit within the statutory time frames the Tenant can take legal action against You in the County Court. The Court will make an order stating that You must pay the Deposit back to the Tenant or lodge it with a Deposit protection scheme. In addition, a further order will be made requiring You to pay compensation to the Tenant of an amount between one and three times the Deposit the sum being at the discretion of the Judge.
You will be unable to serve or enforce a valid Section 21 Notice on Your Tenant until You have protected it and served the Prescribed Information and You have returned the Deposit in full (or the agreed balance of it) to the Tenant, or the court has disposed of any proceedings relating to the return of the Deposit. We have no liability for any loss suffered if You fail to comply.
If works or cleaning is required for any new Tenant, prior to receiving agreement on the dispersal of the Deposit from the outgoing Tenant, these will only be arranged if We are in receipt of funds held on the Client’s behalf. This is due to the fact that if the matter goes to adjudication the Deposit in full or the balance in dispute must be sent with the application. If the Tenant requests the return of the Deposit in writing the Client should ensure it is returned or if they wish to retain a proportion must ensure that Stirling Ackroyd hold the monies in the event of a dispute being raised through my|Deposits.
9.4 Deposits Let Only
At the end of the Tenancy covered by my|Deposits Stirling Ackroyd will do the following:
We do not offer Deposit Arbitration under this service. Should the tenant raise a dispute and We hold the deposit (see Our Services and Fees), We will notify you upon request from My Deposits, you will then need to provide Us with the evidence to submit on Your behalf.
We will not negotiate on Your behalf to resolve any dispute. We will charge the Landlord an administration fee (see Our Services and Fees) in advance to cover costs for collating evidence and information for my|Deposits at the end of the Tenancy, if the Landlord and the Tenant do not agree deductions. The Deposit will be released when Stirling Ackroyd receive written confirmation from either both parties or upon instruction from my|Deposits where We must co-operate in the adjudication of the dispute and follow any recommendations.
9.5 Deposits Rent Collect
At the end of the Tenancy covered by my|Deposits Stirling Ackroyd will do the following:
We will not charge the Landlord an administration fee for collating evidence and information for my|Deposits at the end of the Tenancy, if the Landlord and the Tenant do not agree deductions. The Deposit will be released when Stirling Ackroyd receive written confirmation from either both parties or upon instruction from my|Deposits where We must co-operate in the adjudication of the dispute and follow any recommendations.
If the Landlord is using the Rent Collect Service, it is up to the Client to negotiate with the former Tenant and agree any deductions which are to be made from the Deposit. Both parties will then have to inform Stirling Ackroyd in writing of the agreed deductions. Stirling Ackroyd will then make deductions if applicable and forward the balance of the Deposit to the Tenant. However if the Landlord requests Stirling Ackroyd in writing to negotiate with the former Tenant and pays Our fee (see Our Services and Fees) in advance We will negotiate with the former Tenant on the Client’s behalf, agree deductions and forward the balance of the Deposit to the Tenant. If deductions cannot be agreed the Alternative Dispute Resolution procedure shown in (Section 5) will be followed. We are only able to provide this service is You have supplied an Independent Professional Inventory.
9.6 Deposits Managed and Inclusive Management Service
Please see 3.21 and section 5.0
10.1 Duration of Contract
Unless otherwise agreed in writing in advance, Our appointment as the managing agent is for the duration of the Tenancy and any renewal or extension of it to the same Tenant or any subsequent Tenant or as a result of Our introduction that becomes part of the original agreement. All services (except Inclusive Management Service) can be terminated by giving three months’ written notice from either party subject to a minimum appointment of twelve months or in the case of the Inclusive Management service a minimum appointment of twenty-four months. The grounds and fees for termination are set out in these Terms under Termination/Complaints.
10.2 Acts of Third Parties
We will not be responsible for any loss or damage that the Landlord suffers through the act, default, or negligence of any third party which may arise, other than through the negligence, omission or failure on the part of Us.
We reserve the right to assign Our rights and or obligations under this agreement upon giving You three months’ written notice.
10.4 Third Party Fees
The Landlord agrees that We can receive a fee of up to 20% from external contractors in relation to the organisation and management of the contractors engaged in the agreed repairs to the Property.
10.5 HMO Applications
We will explain to You Your licensing Responsibilities and completed for You the licence application. You will supply all Legislative Safety Certification to enable Us to complete the application. Should You require Us to arrange safety certification We can do this at an additional fee (see Our Services and Fees). We will liaise directly with Your local authority until the license application is approved. This service sits outside Our standard Letting services and is available for all clients irrespective of service at an additional fee (see Our Services and Fees).
10.6 Change of Ownership
If during the Term of The Tenancy, the Property is sold or passed on with the benefit of the Tenant in occupation, We will look to You as the original Landlord of the Property for the full fee for finding a Tenant. These fees do not apply if the new Landlord signs Our Terms and Conditions.
10.7 Change of Address
In order to comply with Section 47 and 48 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1987. It is the Landlords responsibility to inform Us and the Tenant of any change of address in writing.
The Landlord agrees to compensate Us against costs, expenses or liabilities incurred or imposed on Us provided that they were incurred on the Landlord’s behalf in pursuit of Our normal duties unless it is due to Our negligence or breach of contract by Us. We shall not be responsible for events outside Our normal control.
10.9 Data Protection and GDPR
Landlords and Agents who process personal data (for example of Tenants) must register with the Information Commissioners Office (ICO) and pay the necessary fee. Landlords who rent out Property even where there is only one Property in the portfolio are running a business for the purposes of this registration requirement. Therefore, Landlords need to register with the ICO and pay the fee in order to comply with the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) which came into force on 25th May 2018. It is important to note that the requirement to register and pay the necessary fee only applies to Landlords who process data electronically. That is data that is processed via mobiles, computers or tablets.
10.10 Electronic Documentation
Contracts which have been signed electronically (either by fax, email, scanning, DocuSign or website) are binding and admissible in evidence. For convenience, We will ask You, the Tenant or any prospective Tenants to sign documentation electronically. We will not accept any manual or electronic alterations to Our agreements.
10.11 Joint and Several Liability
Where the Landlord is more than one person, each person forming the Landlord will have joint and several liabilities for all the fees, commission, expenses and outgoings of Us for any work or services carried out by Us on behalf of the Landlord.
10.12 Legal Services
Should any Rent arrears or breaches of covenant be brought to Our attention You will be informed. Thereafter should legal action be thought necessary, You will be responsible for instructing Your own solicitor and for any fees or charges incurred. We can attend court with Your solicitor, for which a charge is applicable (see Our Services and Fees).
For Landlords where We provide the Inclusive Management Service or where the Landlord Compliance Service is paid (see 1.8), We make no charge for the serving of a Section 21 Notice (two months’ notice to vacate the Property if it is an Assured Shorthold Tenancy), or Section 8 Notice (a Notice advising the Tenant of a specific breach which needs to be remedied or legal proceedings will be taken) If a Landlord wants to represent themselves at a possession hearing We cannot assist in the completion of the court papers on Your behalf as We have no rights of audience and We cannot sign the Statement of Truth. We would however be happy to support You in court as a witness, although this would be at a separate charge.
We will always endeavour to carry out all services with reasonable care and skill, but will accept no responsibility for any loss or damage suffered by You as a result of the following:
Neither party shall at any time during or following the expiry or termination of this agreement, divulge or allow to be divulged to any person or make use of any confidential information relating to the business or affairs of the other party unless required by law or applicable to a regulatory body or competent authority.
10.14 Mail Forwarding
We inform You that as a Landlord You must notify Us of any change in Your residency. Additionally, it is not part of Our normal function to forward the Landlord’s mail. Therefore, no responsibility can be taken for mail sent to You at the Property. We recommend that You arrange for it to be redirected via the Post Office.
10.15 Money Laundering, Proof of Identity and Proof of Residence
In order to comply with the 5th Anti Money Laundering Directive, Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 and the Money Laundering Regulations 2007, We are now required to verify Your ownership of the Property at the point of instruction and check proof of identity and one proof of residence once We have agreed an offer. The charge for this requirement is detailed in (see Our Services and Fees).
10.16 Court Attendance
If Stirling Ackroyd must attend court on Your behalf as a witness, We will charge a fee (see Our Services and Fees).
If the Property is subject to a mortgage, You will need Your mortgagee’s written consent for the proposed letting without which, You could be subject to a claim of compensation from the Tenant and be in breach of the terms and conditions of Your mortgage. The mortgagee may charge You a fee for giving their permission. The mortgagee may want to see a copy of the draft Tenancy Agreement which can be supplied upon their written request. If Your mortgagee has any special conditions relating to the Tenancy or type of Tenant, You must provide them to Us prior to the start of the Tenancy to be included within the Tenancy Agreement.
Sale of the Property to a Tenant or third party – Where a Tenant or any Third Party introduced to the Landlord by the Tenant or the Agent purchases the Property, whether currently occupied (or previously occupied) by the Tenant, or within 6 months of the expiry of the Tenancy.
The Landlord undertakes to inform the Agent immediately and will enter into a separate sales agreement with Us as the introducing Agent. Where the Landlord sells the Property to a Third Party, he shall remain liable for the Agent’s fees until the new Owner agrees to honour all fees due to us within these terms and conditions agreed between the Agent and the original Landlord until the tenancy ends or the two-year term has passed in the case of Inclusive Management service, whichever is the longer.
As Our Client, You are entitled to a discounted Sale fee should you sell your Property. Please speak to our team about this or present any offer You were given by Us at the time of signing these terms and conditions.
10.19 Third Party Suppliers
We offer a range of services to Landlords and customers and We may provide services to Tenants or prospective Tenants. In the course of business, We may receive fees or reciprocal payments from other parties including Tenants or prospective Tenants. For certain services (such as utility switching, media, broadband, instructing EPCs, Inventory clerks or contractors. This list is not restricted or exhaustive) We may receive fees, discounts or other reciprocation.
10.20 Transparency of referral fees
Pursuant to the Guidance on Transparency of Fees, We are required to provide You with information relating to the price of Our services and any additional services provided under a referral agreement or arrangement for which We are paid a fee. In order to discharge this obligation, We have set out the services available in these Terms and Conditions of Business.
10.21 Energy Supplier
Goodlord have been engaged by Stirling Ackroyd to provide energy supply management services to the Landlord’s Property. The Landlord hereby authorises Stirling Ackroyd to use Goodlord to manage the energy supply during the void period of their property(s). This may result in Goodlord changing the electricity and/or gas supplier for the Property; however, this will not prevent the Landlord from changing to a different energy provider if desired. The Landlord agrees that Stirling Ackroyd may pass the Landlord’s name and contact details to Goodlord for the purposes of:
(a) entering into contracts with Goodlord’s preferred energy supplier in connection with the supply of gas and/or electricity to each Property while that Property is vacant TERMS AND CONDITIONS Page 21 of 24
(b) engaging with relevant energy suppliers in connection with the management and administration of any energy supply contract(s) in connection with each Property
(c) registering the Landlord with the relevant local authority for the payment of council tax; and
(d) registering the Landlord with the incumbent water supplier to the Property. The water supplier may contact the Landlord in order to provide further information about its services and products and conclude an agreement with the Landlord for those services and products. If the Property has an economy seven heating system you must advise us.
If you do not authorise Stirling Ackroyd to appoint Goodlord on Your behalf. You accept that it is Your responsibility to provide the Tenancy details to all of Your suppliers as covered in points a,b,c and d above).
10.22 The Contract (Rights of Third Parties) Act 1999
The Contracts (Rights of Third Parties) 1999 Act does not apply to this contract.
10.23 Variation of Terms
These Terms and Conditions will apply to any re-letting or Tenancy renewal by Us of the Property and/or any further period of instruction or management, subject to any notice period as detailed under the Assignment clause. Any variation to the Terms and Conditions will be provided to You in writing giving thirty Days’ notice.
10.24 Void Periods
It must be noted that Our Services do not apply when the Property is not let.
If Your insurance company may have a requirement, that for cover to be maintained, the Property must be visited at certain intervals during Void Period, We must be notified in writing and where possible We will accommodate this request subject to an additional fee.
Should We agree to undertake Void Period inspections We will act as Agent of Necessity and be obliged to carry out remedial emergency repair work to a Property. Any such works will only be to ensure the vacant Property is left safe and secure and We will take no responsibility nor accept any liability for any consequential loss or damage. We will require full payment of any works completed within seven days of the work being carried out. The Landlord should be aware that during Void Periods Council Tax at the full rate may be levied and responsibility for payment will fall upon the Landlord.
10.25 Services outside of Services
If you instruct Us or We are required to undertake tasks outside of Our normal services (e.g. debt collecting; fair rent assessment; checking alien agreements; Tenancy deposit services or other tribunals; post tenancy assistance or information), you agree to pay Us for Our time (see Our Services and Fees).
Where you have not selected Our Property Management service or an active tenancy is not in place, you agree to pay Us (see Our Services and Fees) for arranging each Property management task that you instruct Us on or We are required to carry out (e.g. the organisation of Check-In, Inventory, cleaning or the arrangement of the changeover of utilities and key cutting) in addition to the contractor’s charges.
10.26 Property Refurbishment/Insurance Claims
Property Refurbishment /Goods Supply – where You require the assistance of Our refurbishment service You agree to pay, in addition to the charges of the refurbishment contractor managed by Stirling Ackroyd, You agree to pay Us (see Our Services and Fees) a percentage of the cost of such refurbishment. Property Refurbishment/Good Supply or works ordered on behalf of an insurer’s regarding any insurance claim, You agree to pay Us (see Our Services and Fees) a percentage of the total value of works.
10.27 Vacant Management Service
If you instruct Stirling Ackroyd to manage the property during vacant periods you agree to pay (see Our Services and Fees), payable upfront and no later than the signing of this contract or when the Property becomes vacant, whichever is the later. If a vacant property visit is required, in addition to Our vacant property management service fee, there is an additional charge per visit, payable in advance (see Our Services and Fees).
11.1 Consumer Protection Regulations
Under the Consumer Protection Regulations, the Client is required to disclose any information that might materially affect a Tenant’s decision to take out a Tenancy at the Property. In the event that information to this affect is not provided to the Tenant they can seek damages as well as a cancellation of the Tenancy that they entered in to. The Client is required to inform Stirling Ackroyd of anything that may fall under this category. If such information is not disclosed then and Stirling Ackroyd suffer any loss as a result, the Client agrees to indemnify Stirling Ackroyd against any such losses.
11.2 Right to Cancel
If this contract was concluded away from Our business premises, then you have the right to cancel this contract if you wish. To exercise this, you must deliver by hand or send by registered mail (including by email) a cancellation notice within 14 days starting from the date You received this notice. please address Your cancellation to: The Customer Relationship Team, Unit 2 Wintersells Road, Byfleet, Surrey KT14 7LF. Alternatively email firstname.lastname@example.org.
11.3 Termination / Complaints check
Either party has the right to terminate this contract in writing.
Either party may withdraw instructions for any service or for the Property upon giving three months’ written notice, subject to a minimum appointment of twelve months or in the case of the Inclusive Management service a minimum appointment of twenty-four months.
Any cancelation of Our Inclusive Management service where We have provided and paid for compliance certification (The Gas Safety, EICR & EPC) and inventory, the full cost of these will become due to Us subject to a minimum fee of £1000.00 (Inc VAT).
The fee for finding a Tenant is in accordance with Our agreement will still be due in line with Our Let Only service as printed in Our service and fees and subject to a minimum fee of £1,000.00 (Inc. VAT) per year for the first three years of a Tenancy. The Let Only proportion of the fee will still be due to Us should you cancel Our Rent Collect, Managed or Inclusive Management Service.
Should there be a legitimate, fundamental and enforceable breach of any Term of this contract by Us, a Landlord may terminate this contract immediately upon giving written notice and no further fees will be payable.
If We consider that the Landlord is in breach of any regulation or obligation (whether statutory or not) relating to the Property, We may give You seven Days written notice of termination. However, if the breach relates to any form of discrimination such as Race, Sex or Disability (as defined under the Equality Act 2010) We may give You immediate written notice of termination.
11.4 Internal Complaints Procedure
We are committed to providing a professional service to all Our clients and customers. When something goes wrong, We need you to tell Us about it. This will help Us to improve Our standards.
If you have a complaint, please put it in writing, including as much detail as possible. We will then respond in line with the time frames set out below (if you feel We have not sought to address Your complaints within eight weeks, you may be able to refer Your complaint to the Property Ombudsman to consider without Our final viewpoint on the matter).
What will happen next?
If you remain dissatisfied, you can then contact The Property Ombudsman to request an independent review:
Milford House, 43 – 55 Milford Street, Salisbury, Wiltshire, SP1 2BP Telephone: 01722 333306 Website: www.tpos.co.uk
You will need to submit Your complaint to The Property Ombudsman within 12 months of receiving Our final viewpoint letter, including any evidence to support Your case.
The Property Ombudsman requires that all complaints are addressed through this in-house complaints’ procedure, before being submitted for an independent review.
11.5 The Property Ombudsman
We are members of The Property Ombudsman Scheme and follow their Code of Practice for Residential Lettings and Management. In the unlikely event that You are dissatisfied with Our Service and this cannot be resolved by communicating with Our branch, please write to Us at Our registered Head Office: Managing Director’s Office, Unit 2, Wintersells Road, Byfleet, Surrey, KT14 7LF
Stirling Ackroyd are property experts, with over 100 years’ experience you can trust that you will get an in-depth valuation and thorough assessment of the market. Our local area experts are on hand to help you understand the price of your property.