We have recently moved from the Student Information Centre to our new location in Catalyst and, in doing so, we have adopted a number of new processes.
As previously, the Accommodation Team is more than happy to assist with any queries you may have but we ask that you inform us before your arrival. Therefore, if you do want to call in and speak to us, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will book an appointment at a convenient time for you.
Registering Your Property
If you wish to renew your registration with us, or you are a new landlord wishing to register for the first time, please download the documents below. You will need to complete, sign and return the registration form via email, together with a copy of your current landlord gas safety certificate and a copy of your contract. You can access a sample tenancy and agreement and sample licence agreement below.
Please note that we are unable to register any property that uses a joint tenancy agreement or any agreement that contains a joint & several liability clause.
The Accommodation Team manages a database of over 300 off-campus
properties and provides up-to-date information on all current or imminent
Please ensure that you let us know when a vacancy becomes available or is taken so that we can ensure that our list is accurate for students.
Tel: 01695 657555
You are advised that, when you have found a suitable tenant, you both sign a formal tenancy agreement. Before signing the agreement please ensure that it is clearly written and contains the following essential information:
- The name of the landlord and tenant(s)
- The address of the property (and room number if applicable)
- The period of the agreement
- The amount of the rent and other charges
- Details of when the rent is to be paid
- Notice period & deposit details
Please note that we do not endorse the use of any particular contract and strongly advise you to investigate the various alternatives that are available. It is your responsibility to use a contract that is appropriate for your needs and meets legal requirements.
We will not advertise your property if you use a contract that uses a joint and several liability clause.
Please follow this link for information on government model contracts.
Any contractual agreement you enter into is strictly between you and your tenants and does not involve Edge Hill University.
- It is illegal for a landlord to harass a tenant. Harassment entails:
acts likely to interfere with a tenant’s quiet enjoyment of the property
- persistent withdrawal or withholding of services which the tenant needs to
live reasonably within the premises
The definition of harassment varies but may include these examples:
- the landlord entering the premises without the tenant’s consent
- the landlord going through the tenant’s possessions
- the landlord threatening the tenant with, or actually carrying out violence
- the landlord withholding a key which may cause difficulties
- anti-social behaviour by the landlord or his/her agent
- a failure to carry out repairs which the landlord is legally obliged to do
Properties are exempt from Council Tax if ALL the adult residents are registered as full time students. If there is only one adult student who is not in full time education then 75% of the Council Tax will be payable. If there are two or more adult residents who are not full time students, then full Council Tax will be payable.
Student tenants should be made aware of the status of all other residents in the property so that there are no misunderstandings about liability for council tax.
For further information on Council Tax billing please contact your local Council directly.
Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMOs)
*Applications for licensing your Houses in Multiple Occupation should be submitted now*
West Lancashire Borough Council is reminding Private Sector Landlords about changes to the law relating to the licensing of Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMOs).
Landlords can download a HMO licence application form and find out further information about HMO regulations at westlancs.gov.uk/hmo or by contacting the Council’s Private Sector Housing Team on 01695 585279, or email email@example.com.
Each application is likely take between 10 to 12 weeks.
Repairs and Maintenance
We recommend to all landlords that you ensure the house is in good repair before the tenants move into the property, since outstanding repairs and inadequate facilities can prove to be the main source of disagreement between students and landlords. From the outset it is important that both parties are aware of their responsibilities in relation to repair and maintenance to the property. It is crucial that all landlords are aware that they do have legal obligations to repair and they do have to meet specific legal requirements.
Student Funding is paid to students in three instalments; usually towards the end of September, the beginning of January and the end of April. It is not possible for this funding to be brought forward as the dates are set by Student Finance England.
As from 1 October 2014 It is a legal requirement for all lettings agents and property managers in England to belong to one of three Government approved redress scheme.
Whilst the majority of lettings agents and property managers provide a good service there are a minority who offer a poor service and engage in unacceptable practices. This requirement will mean that tenants and landlords with agents in the private rented sector and leaseholders and freeholders dealing with property managers in the residential sector will be able to complain to an independent person about the service they have received. Ultimately the requirement to belong to a redress scheme will help weed out bad agents and property managers and drive up standards.
The three schemes are:
Ombudsman Services Property
Property Redress Scheme
The Property Ombudsman
Click for more information on the Redress Scheme.
The Accommodation Team expects that all registered properties are safe, habitable and comfortable and we work closely with West Lancashire Borough Council and Lancashire Fire and Rescue to ensure this. If any concern is reported to us by a student we will seek advice from West Lancashire Borough Council, who may decide to visit the property.
Based on feedback from West Lancashire Borough Council, if there is a serious concern relating to a property, we may remove it from our registered list.
Students are expected to be respectful and considerate when living in the local community, particularly with regard to noise levels. Every student living in Ormskirk is sent a letter from the West Lancashire Community Safety Partnership, which is a joint collaboration between the University, the Students’ Union, the local council and the Police and they are also sent an email making clear the University’s expectations of them. The letter is aimed at educating students regarding their responsibilities when living in the local community, as well as providing advice to them on how to integrate safely and effectively.
In these instances, we also contact the landlord and expect that the landlord also speaks to the students separately to further reinforce the message.
Tenancy Deposit Schemes
If you charge a deposit and you rent your house on an assured shorthold tenancy that started after 6 April 2007 you must put the deposit in a government-backed tenancy deposit scheme (TDP).
Tenancy Deposit Schemes protect tenants in ensuring that deposits are paid back if the following conditions are met:
- the tenant meets the terms of the tenancy agreement
- the tenant doesn’t damage the property
- the tenant pays rent and bills
Safety in Your Property
The Gas Safe Register is the official list of gas engineers who are qualified to work safely and legally on gas appliances. Always check your engineer is on the Gas Safe Register.
When your annual check has been completed and you have been provided with your landlord gas safety certificate please remember to supply the Accommodation Team with a copy so that we can ensure that any vacancies are advertised.
It is also a good idea to provide a copy of the certificate to your tenants.
Please see the Gas Safe Register website for more information.
Please have a look at this short video which explains the importance of using Gas Safe registered engineers in order to eliminate the risk of a gas leak or carbon monoxide poisoning.
It is important that all registered landlords read this guidance to ensure they are aware of their responsibilities to carry out a fire risk assessment and to ensure that their property has adequate and appropriate fire safety measures in place.
The Accommodation Team works closely with Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service to raise awareness amongst students and landlords about the dangers of fire and steps to take to drastically decrease the chances of fire starting. If you have any questions or need any advice please visit the Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service website.
The Lacors Fire Safety Guidance contains information on fire safety within the home.
For more useful information, please visit lancsbusinessplus.org.uk
As of 1 October 2015 landlords must legally install a carbon monoxide detector in any room containing a solid fuel burning appliance (e.g. a coal fire or wood burning stove).
Click to view the Smoke and carbon monoxide alarms: explanatory booklet for landlords.
Tenant Fees Act
The Tenant Fees Act comes into force on 1 June 2019.
The Act sets out the government’s approach to banning letting fees paid by tenants in the private rented sector and capping tenancy deposits in England.
The aim of the Act is to reduce the costs that tenants can face at the outset, and throughout, a tenancy, and is part of a wider package of measures aimed at re-balancing the relationship between tenants and landlords to deliver a fairer, good quality and more affordable private rented sector.
Tenants will be able to see, at a glance, what a given property will cost them in the advertised rent with no hidden costs. The party that contracts the service – the landlord – will be responsible for paying for the service, which will help to ensure that the fees charged reflect the real economic value of the services provided and sharpen letting agents’ incentive to compete for landlords’ business.
The key points are:
- Default fees will be limited to charges for replacement keys or a respective security device, and late rent payments only.
- Cap holding deposits at no more than one week’s rent, applying to a maximum of one property only.
- Security deposits will be capped at five weeks’ rent.
- Creates a civil offence with a fine of £5,000 for a first offence and civil penalties of up to £30,000.
- Amends the Consumer Rights Act 2015 to specify that the letting agent transparency requirements should apply to property portals such as Rightmove and Zoopla.
- Local authorities will be able to retain the money raised through financial penalties with this money reserved for future local housing enforcement.
Alongside rent and deposits, agents and landlords will only be permitted to charge tenants fees associated with:
- A change or early termination of a tenancy when requested by the tenant.
- Utilities, communication services and Council Tax.
- Payments arising from a default by the tenant such as replacing lost key.
For more information, please see the gov.uk website.