I have been asked for a 12 months rent in advance

I have been asked for a 12 months rent in advance

10:20 AM, 14th August 2013, About 9 years ago 36

Text Size

I am a student that will be studying in the United Kingdom soon.Overseas Tenant

I really need some advice on whether I should rent the property that I found through a website.

The agent to that property is insisting on 12 months rent in advance and an extra 1 month rent as deposit. They also charge an additional £199 for a background check which I know it is a standard procedure but it usually only costs £150.

I really wanted to know whether it is normal for a tenant to pay an upfront of 12 months and whether the agent is reliable.

I sincerely thank anyone that can provide me any advice.

Jonathan Lim



Comments

andrew townshend

17:31 PM, 15th August 2013, About 9 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Mark Alexander" at "15/08/2013 - 17:23":

point taken mark, however i would still be careful as there are many poor agents out there, and i am not talking about just the small ones here.

Mark Alexander - Founder of Property118 View Profile

17:34 PM, 15th August 2013, About 9 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "andrew townshend" at "15/08/2013 - 17:31":

I agree Andrew, in fact, my experience has been that the biggest agents are often the worst, certainly the most expensive!
.

HB Welcome

17:57 PM, 15th August 2013, About 9 years ago

Spend £3 and check who owns the property here;

http://www.landregistry.gov.uk/public/property-ownership

Then contact them to see if it is genuine.

It still might be a scam, even if they do own it.

Beware.

HB Welcome

18:04 PM, 15th August 2013, About 9 years ago

"Reply to Mark at 17.23"

I've been letting a few properties to overseas professionals lately and I could have cleared up with the amount of rent in advance I could have multi let for, if my evil ways had let me.
Ownership is not checked if it is current, under repossession, arrears etc.
Admittedly what you say is a safeguard but that won't help Jonathon on the day when he turns up with 50 other 'tenants' for the same property.

Mark Alexander - Founder of Property118 View Profile

18:09 PM, 15th August 2013, About 9 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "HB Welcome" at "15/08/2013 - 18:04":

Fair point - what a cruel and horrible world we live in hey. I bet poor Jonathan is beginning to question his wisdom at coming to the UK.

I never thought to ask before, but don't most students get an option to go into Halls of Residence for their first year these days? By far the better option if possible IMHO.
.

andrew townshend

19:01 PM, 15th August 2013, About 9 years ago

my youngest is off to plymouth uni in sept and yes it is normal for them to go into halls of residence for the first year. what happens next yr, any good landlords down there in plymouth? or do i buy something down there?

Mark Alexander - Founder of Property118 View Profile

19:04 PM, 15th August 2013, About 9 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "andrew townshend" at "15/08/2013 - 19:01":

Is it as easy for overseas students to get into halls for the first year though?

I know when my stepson was in Halls at Greenwich a couple of years ago there were plenty of overseas students. That's my only experience though, I have no idea how many didn't get in.
.

Winsome P

22:26 PM, 15th August 2013, About 9 years ago

If you are renting with 4 others and THEY live in the UK are they being asked for 12 months in advance as well?
Student houses sometimes have Finnish, chinese students etc and I for one am not going to chase a parent down in some sprawl in China.
If your housemates have parental guarentors then really your housemates are the guarentors for your part of the rent if a group and several tenancy. I would see if one of their parents etc or an aunt would guarentee your rent.
If the contract is group and several then you are all in the same boat. So its your housemates who should be checking you!
Do the property check for the owner and have a friend knock on the door and speak to the current tenants as they know far more than you will about the landlord the agent etc. How long they have been there whats happened etc, whats the agent liek landlord reputation, interior for viewing, which room are you getting etc
If all of you are being asked for 12 months avoid completely.

If its only you are being asked which is statistically likely then give all your details parents mobiles etc emails etc and if necessary fax a current bank statement and ask you parents to find a guarentor. If the above all stack up and your friends know and trust you having known you for a year then speak to the agent and ask for the landlord to speak to.
Speaking as a Landlord it is a risk to take on however doing the above should tell you whats going on. Afteral if they know the house and have seen it its likely to be rented out at the moment to a group. If its not then again steer clear and take further steps. Also ask for the draft contract as that should state the landlords name I believe and give a sense of the situation.
Your guarentors are in effect your fellow joint and severally liable students and their parents.
If all the rest stacks up and the agent is proper se above responses then the 12 months plus security deposit is only fair on you fellow students if you bunk. If the contracts are room by room well again the above checks and information will reassure both parties, a skype face to face call may help too.

Joe Bloggs

10:33 AM, 16th August 2013, About 9 years ago

due diligence is absolutely essential.
however re 'They also charge an additional £199 for a background check which I know it is a standard procedure but it usually only costs £150.' please note not all landlords charge for referencing. we dont as we dont use agents. furthermore, if you are paying rent up front this mainly obviates the need for referencing. however, we always collect 6 months rent in advance from all students, whether foreign or not and wouldnt entertain renting to them without meeting them.
as mark says you should try landlords accredited by the uni...that will be safer although i suspect all the good stuff has now gone.

Jonathan Lim

18:01 PM, 16th August 2013, About 9 years ago

Thank you everyone for the advice. After a long discussion with my parents, I decided to live in halls for the first year and look for a better private lodging for the second year as the university only provide halls for first year students. Hopefully it will be easier to get a room when I am there. Thank you everyone, your information has helped me a lot.

Leave Comments

In order to post comments you will need to Sign In or Sign Up for a FREE Membership

or

Don't have an account? Sign Up

Landlord Tax Planning Book Now