You will have to pay rent to live in a rented property. You may also have to pay a premium to reserve the property, a deposit and a reatiner to secure the property prior to final signing of a contract and or moving in.


Before taking a property, check how much the rent is and whether you can afford to pay it, what it includes, when it is payable, how you can pay, and whether there are any clauses in the agreement allowing for an increase in the rent or charges for late rent.

The obligation to pay rent
Your principal obligation as a tenant is to pay your rent as and when it becomes due. If you fall into arrears you become liable to eviction. Always keep some evidence that rent has been paid - this will avoid queries later over unpaid rent. You do not have an automatic right to withold rent if your landlord does not carry out or refuses to carry out repairs on the property.

If you leave the property before the end of a fixedterm tenancy or fail to give appropriate notice where notice is allowed, you remain liable for the rent even after you have left the property. However, the landlord is under a duty to attempt to re-let the property and cannot unreasonably refuse to re-let to someone else you may find.

Rent Guarantor
A landlord may require this. This means they want a third party to guarantee (promise) to pay any rent you are liable to pay if you do not. This must be in writing to be enforceable.

Most private landlords request that a deposit is paid to provide some security against any damage you may cause to the property. There is no legal limit to the amount to be paid, but it is normally one of two months' rent.

When paying a deposit, ensure the agreement says what the deposit covers, when it will be returned to you, obtain a receipt for paying and ensure you get an inventory, which you are happy with.

Council Tax
Where a property is occupied by full-time students only*, then no council tax is payable. However, if a non-student is living in the property, liability for council tax may arise.