Presentation on theme: "Do you worry about HOUSING? Then click anywhere for advice and guidance."— Presentation transcript:
Do you worry about HOUSING? Then click anywhere for advice and guidance.
Contents If you know what you want to look at then please click on the links below: Viewing houses The Housing List Contracts Rights and responsibilities Notice Disputes Bills Deposits Halls Staying Safe Contact Details Useful Links Click elsewhere on the slide to continue to the next slide
Viewing Houses Before you sign for a house it is essential that you view the property first, do not just trust your friend to pick your house. In York there are more student houses then there are students so you have time to look and carefully consider where you are going to live. You may want to visit the property more than once and at different times in the day, this gives you a better feel for the area, the people who are around and how safe you feel. Take a checklist with you which can help you see what you need to ask and look for. You can get such a checklist through Shelter or Rightmove.ShelterRightmove If possible try and speak to the current tenants as they will be able to give you their honest opinion on what it is like to live in the house. They will also be able to give you a good estimate on how much utility bills cost. Click here to return to contents page. Click here to exit and return to desktop.
The Housing List Beyond Halls of Residence, York St John University does not have its own private accommodation that it rents out to student. We have however helped produce the York Code of Best Practice for Student Accommodation in association with other institutions. The code sets out both mandatory and recommended standards expected in student housing.Not all landlords sign up to the code as it is discretionary. To be sure your house signs up to the code you need to wait until the University housing list is released. Only houses that comply with code are advertised through the University. The list is usually issued at the beginning of Semester 2 and can be found on the accommodation website.website You can view the Code of Best Practice by clicking here.here Click here to return to contents page. Click here to exit and return to desktop.
Contracts So you have been and seen a house and you decide that it is the one for you, then the agent thrusts a contract at you and wants you to sign it there and then. You might be given time to look over it but you might feel under pressure to just sign. BE CAREFUL. You should always be sure of the terms of the contract before you sign as once you have agreed to a contract it can be very difficult to get out of it. If you are not sure about anything in the contract then you have the right to have 72 hours to consider it. This gives the opportunity to think about your options and also seek clarification of anything you are not sure about. There are sources available to you to check your contract and help you understand its content. You can contact us and we will be happy to check it for you or you can take to the VP Education and Welfare at the SU.contact us You have time to get it checked so use this time and dont rush in. In residential contracts you are often required to all sign the same copy of the agreement and this means you have joint and several liability. This means each person is responsible for the whole of the property, including the whole of the rent and allows landlords to pursue other tenants should one fail to pay. Click here to return to contents page. Click here to exit and return to desktop.
Rights and Responsibilities In the vast majority of houses there is very little that goes wrong however there are times when something might need to be done and you need to know whose responsibility it is. Your contract is usually a good place to start as this can set out various responsibilities that are to be met by the Landlord and the ones that you are to meet. However there are certain things that are the responsibility of the landlord in all circumstances, these are legal obligations that they cannot contract out of. Such obligations include being responsible for all structural and exterior repairs, drains, pipes, gas and electrical equipment. They are also responsible for making sure your home is safe. Minor damage is often the responsibility of the tenant. If you are not sure who is responsible for certain repairs then you should contact us for an appointment.contact us Click here to return to contents page. Click here to exit and return to desktop.
Notice Notice and the amount of notice required can often be a cause for contention, this can be particularly relevant when having a house inspection or your landlord wants to show round prospective tenants for once you have left. On your part you must respect the fact that the property does belong to the landlord and if they give you sufficient notice, in the correct form, then you should let them in at the time specified. What constitutes sufficient notice can depend on your contract but as a general rule 24 hours is considered appropriate. You may need to keep in mind that notice can be in the form of phone call, text or letter and so long as one person has been informed that counts as the whole household being informed. If your landlord shows up unannounced then they may be acting outside their powers as you have the right to peaceable enjoyment of the property. Peaceable enjoyment means you have the right to live in the property undisturbed as you would in your own home. If you have any questions regarding notice then please contact us.contact us Click here to return to contents page. Click here to exit and return to desktop.
Disputes It is extremely important that you chose your housemates very carefully. It is usual practice that a housing contract lasts for 12 months so you have to be as confident as you can be that you are going to live with a person who, for the most part, you can get on with. Living with other people can be very rewarding and you can make friends for life so it is worth taking time to get it right for you, remember you have plenty of time to look for houses so you do not have to rush to choose people to live with. Disputes in the home can arise for a number of issues: non payment of bills, rent or cleaning for example. Often disputes arise from a lack of communication and by simply talking about the issues can be very useful. The Student Union runs mediation sessions for housemates to help you talk about the problems you are having. If there has been a complete breakdown in the relationship between housemates and someone wishes to leave it can be very difficult and potentially expensive to get out of the contract and should you wish to seek further advice on this please contact us.contact us Click here to return to contents page. Click here to exit and return to desktop.
Bills Unless you are able to take out a bills package as part of your rent whereby all bills are included in your weekly/monthly cost then you will have to pay for water, gas and electricity for the property. Deciding who pays for the bills can be difficult as some people will set up the bills and then try and get the money back of others and other will divide the bills for different people to set up so that no one person is responsible for everything. While these methods can work we recommend that when setting up accounts with companies you should get everybody in the house named on the account. If there is only one person named on the account and a housemate fails to pay the company can only try and recover the money from the person named on the account. If all the tenants names are present the company can try and recover any money owed from any of the named people. You can also use companies such as Glide who divide the bills for you so you each have a separate bill.GlideContact usContact us if you have any further issues regarding bills. Click here to return to contents page. Click here to exit and return to desktop.
Deposits Deposits (sometimes called Bonds) are amounts of money which are usually collected off each tenant before moving in. The idea is the money is kept until the end of tenancy and it will be used to repair any damage caused. This can lead to disputes as to who caused the damage, whether it was existing at the time of moving in or whether it is a case of expected wear and tear. To help in this, ALL deposits have to placed into a tenancy deposit scheme and you must be provided details of the scheme into which your deposit is placed. You must receive these details within 14 days of paying your deposit. If your landlord does not protect your deposit you may be able to take action at the County Court. To help you should disputes arise you should always make an accurate inventory of the house as soon as you move in and you should also take photos of the house so you have evidence if you need it. Click here for a blank inventory produced by Shelter.here Click here to return to contents page. Click here to exit and return to desktop.
Halls Although most people choose to move into private accommodation after the first year you can apply to stay in Halls or even become a Student Warden. Contact the accommodation office for more information or check out the Student Union Website for videos on living in halls.accommodation officeWebsite Lord Mayors Walk City Residence Percys Lane The Grange Limes Court Click here to return to contents page. Click here to exit and return to desktop.
Staying Safe Wherever you live you should always make sure you and your possessions are as safe as possible. York is a comparatively safe city however crime does happen, but you can take simple action to help stay safe. More than a third of crime are by opportunists so try and make your house as unattractive as possible to thieves by making life harder for them. It sounds simple but dont forget to use the locks on your doors at all times and remove the keys from the locks. Dont leave your keys in places where thieves can access them such as phone tables etc next to the door or under a stone or brick in the garden, it is the first place they will look. If your landlord provides you with an alarm, use it and make sure all your household know how to work it.Dont leave any windows open if you are not in that room or if you go out. Dont leave any garden equipment or tools lying around outside as they could be used to assist a thief in gaining entry to your property. If you have a bike invest in a good quality lock – itll make your bike harder to steal and it will also help you get insurance.Get contents insurance, just in case. Check out Endsleigh for a quote.Endsleigh Click here to return to contents page. Click here to exit and return to desktop.
Contact Details Click here to return to contents page. Click here to exit and return to desktop.
Useful Links Accommodation Service City of York Council Community Legal Advice Direct.gov Endsleigh Insurance North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue North Yorkshire Police NUS extra – Housing Advice Rightmove - Student section Shelter Student Finance and Welfare Housing Pages York Code of Best Practice for Student Accommodation Click here to return to contents page. Click here to exit and return to desktop.