One of the biggest problems we see students facing is maintenance issues! Some things do fall under your responsibility, but some are the landlord’s. If you’ve read your contract properly (see above) this should explain this! If not, the Shelter website is really helpful when trying to work it out. Make sure you report any issues to your estate agent/landlord ASAP and record when you do – if you tell them over the phone make sure to send a follow up email that day so you have proof in writing that you let them know.
This Tenancy Troubleshooting guide is really good for tips for when you’re living in private housing, along with the rest of the info on NUS Ready to Rent that we’ve been posting about this week.
We’ve talked about a few things this week that slot nicely into this category – fees and deposits, inventories and what to do with them, but this is more focused on moving out now. Use your inventory and the photos in it to make sure you leave the property in the same state is was when you started, and take photos and videos of everything when you leave so you can dispute any claims that it’s worse.
Your deposit should be (legally has to be) protect by a deposit protection scheme, meaning that if there are any issues you have an independent to go through to sort out claiming it back! This is why it’s so important that any issues you have are written down so you can prove that you weren’t the cause – all of this can be used as evidence if you do end up in a dispute, unlike a phone conversation.
SOSU’S Housing Week event today is the Private Housing Advisor drop in in The Den (Solent Students’ Union Café Bar), where we’ll be helping to look over your contracts and help with any issues you may be currently facing!
If you have any questions, feel free to get in touch on firstname.lastname@example.org or @SolentWelfare! The University’s private housing advisor is also available to help, email her on email@example.com.
By Hanna Head