General Tenant Information & Terms
Cardiff Estates and Lettings Ltd is a company registered in England and Wales
Registered Office Address: 27 Caerphilly Road, Cardiff CF14 4AD Tel: 02920 520 520
PROPERTY FILE PLUS
You will be invited to connect to My Property File Plus so that you can access important documents and information regarding your tenancy. This will also provide you with the facility to report any maintenance issues immediately
If the property you are renting is being managed by us on behalf of the landlord and you have a maintenance issue, you can email: email@example.com or phone the office on 02920 520 520 so that we can log any works to be carried out.
OUT OF HOURS
If you need to contact us and you cannot contact us by phone, please email firstname.lastname@example.org for general matters or email@example.com to report any maintenance issues.
Emails are checked on occasion during non-working hours, however we cannot guarantee that a response will be provided outside office hours.
In the event of an emergency during your tenancy you must take appropriate action, contacting the relevant emergency services if necessary. We must also be notified as soon as possible by phone/email/text. Please leave a voice mail message if you are unable to speak to anyone.
EMERGENCY ONLY - (Police, Fire, Ambulance) - 999
GAS Emergency * - 0800 111 999 - (Free Phone)
Police - 02920 222 111 - www.south-wales.police.uk
NHS Direct - 0845 46 47 - www.nhsdirect.wales.nhs.uk
Cardiff City Council - 02920 872 000 - www.cardiff.gov.uk
Welsh Water - 0800 052 0145 - www.dwrcymru.com
Rail Enquiries - 08457 48 49 50 - www.nationalrail.co.uk
National Express - 0870 580 8080 - www.nationalexpress.co.uk
Samaritans - 02920 344 022 - www.samaritans.org
Can you smell gas or suspect gas leak?
IMPORTANT INFORMATION REGARDING YOUR TENANCY
1. CONTROLLING CONDENSATION and MOULD
2. WALL MOUNTED STORAGE HEATERS
4. PEST CONTROL
5. PREPAYMENT METERS
CONTROLLING CONDENSATION and MOULD
There are three main causes of condensation:
· Moisture produced by everyday activities
· Not enough ventilation
· Cool temperatures
Cooking, drying clothes, showering – even breathing – add to the moisture in the air. If this moisture is allowed to build up it can cause damp. This can increase the risk of respiratory illness and cause black mould growth on walls, ceilings, furniture and clothing.
Some people do not realise that this mould growth is often caused by condensation from normal activities, mistakenly thinking these are signs of damp caused by problems with the property itself.
There are three main ways to tackle the problem:
1 Stop moisture building up
2 Ventilate/ Air the home
3 Keep your home warm
Stop moisture building up:
1 Wipe down surfaces where moisture settles
2 Cover boiling pans when cooking
3 When cooking, bathing or washing and drying clothes, close kitchen and bathroom doors to prevent steam going into colder rooms, even after you have finished
4 Cover fish tanks to stop the water evaporating into the air
5 Dry clothes outside where possible
6 Make sure tumble dryers are vented to the outside
7 Do not use bottled gas or paraffin heaters as these produce a lot of moisture and can
also be a health and safety risk if not used and stored appropriately
Ventilate, or air, the home
1 When cooking or washing, open windows or use extractors
2 Where drying clothes inside is necessary, do so in a small room with windows open
3 Open windows for a while each day or use the trickle/night vents
4 Do not block air vents – this is also important where gas and heating appliances are concerned as they need a supply of oxygen to work effectively and allow gases, such as carbon monoxide, to escape
5 Allow air to circulate around furniture and in cupboards –make sure cupboards and wardrobes aren’t overfilled and there is space between the furniture and the wall
Keep your home warm
1. When the whole house is warmer, condensation is less likely to form
2 Maintain a low heat when the weather is cold or wet – this is more effective than short bursts of high heat
3 Turn your heating on as soon as the weather cools to maintain a temperature of not less than 21C. If you have thermostats on the radiators accordingly adjust these to achieve at least 18C and 21-22C in living areas to provide enough heat for the property to remain above dew-point.
Important things to remember
· Do not block permanent ventilators
· Never block a chimney opening
· Do not draught proof:
- rooms where there is condensation or mould growth
- rooms where there is a gas cooker or a fuel burning heater, for example a gas fire
- windows in the bathroom or kitchen
· Do not put furniture against cold external walls
What to do if your home already has mould?
The tips set out should help prevent mould, but what if you already have the problem? How do you get rid of it?
Do not disturb mould by brushing or vacuum cleaning. This can increase the risk of respiratory problems.
Mould is a living organism and needs killing to get rid of it. To do this, wipe down affected areas with a fungicidal wash – one which carries a Health and Safety Executive approved number – making sure you follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
Do not use bleach or washing up liquid.
Treat any mould you may already have in your home then do what you can to reduce condensation. This will restrict new mould growth.
Mildewed clothes should be dry cleaned and any affected carpets shampooed.
After treatment, redecorate using a good quality fungicidal paint to help prevent mould recurring. This paint is not effective if overlaid with ordinary paints or wallpaper.
I have followed all of the above, what do I do next?
You should begin to notice a considerable improvement within a few weeks. If the problem persists, it may be due to another cause of damp. There are four main causes of damp.
1 Condensation – as outlined in this document
2 Rising damp – this is rare as a damp-proof course prevents this but can usually be seen by a tide mark above the skirting board – notify your landlord/agent
3 Penetrating damp – caused by a problem with the fabric of the building which means rainwater is able to get through the walls, roof, windows or doors – notify your landlord/agent
4 Plumbing faults or broken leaking pipes – rising damp and penetrating damp can usually be easily identified at the early stages. A leaking pipe can be more difficult to identify, however if you suspect you may have a leaking pipe - notify your landlord/agent as soon as possible
TENANTS WILL BE HELD RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY DAMAGE CAUSED AS A RESULT OF NOT EFFECTIVELY CONTROLLING DAMP/CONDENSTAION UNLESS IT IS CONFIRMED TO BE A LANDLORD ISSUE. REFER ANY CONCERNS TO THE AGENT/LANDLORD
WALL MOUNTED STORAGE HEATERS
Please note the following regarding the use of electric storage heaters in a property:
DO NOT cover the surface of the heater, place anything in contact with the heater e.g. furniture, or obstruct the air outlet grilles as this will cause the element to overheat and break for which you will be held liable. This is also a potential fire hazard.
DO NOT leave the heaters on for a prolonged period of time, or if the property is left unoccupied. The hot elements come into direct contact with dust particles in the air and can be a potential fire hazard. Furthermore, this may cause wall blackening and damage to paintwork for which you will be held liable.
DO NOT allow any item or debris to fall into the outlet grills at the top of the heater as this will damage the heater and is a potential fire hazard.
If you are aware of any problem with your heaters, or have any concerns, switch them off immediately and then report this to the agent/landlord by phone and also email: firstname.lastname@example.org if possible.
You may be held liable for any damages caused as a result of not using the heaters correctly
Please note the following regarding the use of extractor fans in a property:
1. Excess moisture in bathrooms can lead to damp, condensation and mould growth
2. Extractor fans are installed to prevent this from happening
3. Extractor fans are normally wired into the existing lighting circuit so that when the light is turned on, the fan turns on and when the light is turned off, the fan turns off
4. In most cases the extractor fan can be isolated by a separate pull cord inside the bathroom or a switch mounted outside the bathroom (often above the door). You must ensure that this is switched on at all times when using the bathroom
You may be held liable for any damages caused as a result of not using the extractors when necessary
Legionnaires’ disease is caused by Legionella bacteria infecting your lungs. It's usually caught by breathing in small droplets of contaminated water. The infection isn't contagious and can't be spread directly from person to person.
Legionella bacteria naturally occur and are commonly found in rivers and lakes. However, the bacteria have the potential to contaminate artificial water supply systems, such as air conditioning units etc.
The two things that Legionella bacteria need to grow and reproduce are:
A water temperature of 20-45C (68-113F)
Impurities in the water that the bacteria can use for food – such as rust, algae and lime scale
While the risk in the majority of housing accommodation is low all tenants must take the following precautions: -
Flush through showers and taps for 10 minutes following a period of non-use
E.g. after you have been on holiday or if a room is not in regular use
Keep all shower heads and taps clean and free from a build-up of lime scale, mould or algae growth
Keep hot water on your boiler system at a temperature of no less than 60°C
IF SHOWER HEADS AND TAPS ARE NOT KEPT CLEAN FROM LIME SCALE, MOULD OR ALGAE GROWTH WE WILL INSTRUCT OUR OWN CLEANERS FOR WHICH YOU WILL BE CHARGED
Waste Management and General Housekeeping
Pests and Rodents can be a health hazard and can also cause damage to a property.
Cardiff Council also take pest control very seriously and as a tenant you must take responsibility for general housekeeping and control of refuse in the property that you are renting.
Please note the following:
Tenants are responsible for the amount of rubbish that they produce. Tenants are also responsible for the correct storage / disposal of their rubbish. For example, if they have too much rubbish for one bin and require additional bins, then they must provide additional bins.
If applicable: It is not acceptable to leave bags of rubbish in the garden without putting them in suitable containers with lid
As applicable, Tenants must make sure that they adhere to either the Development Site Policy (if applicable) on the control of rubbish, or the council’s strict guidelines regarding the placing of any rubbish outside the premises ready for collection on the specified day.
Any issues or concerns regarding pests /rodents must be reported immediately to the Landlord/Agent by phone, if possible and also in writing/ by email. Tenants will be responsible for any charges regarding pest control measures necessary during the tenancy or as a consequence of their tenancy
We are all expected to keep and dispose of our rubbish in a controlled manner and we expect the same in our rented properties.
TENANTS WILL BE HELD RESPONSIBLE FOR ALL COSTS / DAMAGE CAUSED BY PESTS / RODENTS IN THE PROPERTY THEY ARE RENTING DURING THEIR TENANCY.
TENANTS WILL ALSO BE RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY OTHER COSTS INCURRED REGARDING POOR WASTE MANAGEMENT - FOR EXAMPLE, FIXED PENALTY CHARGES
What is a prepayment meter?
A prepayment meter is a type of energy meter that can be found in domestic properties. With a prepayment, or 'pay as you go' tariff, customers pay for their energy before they use it – usually by adding money to a 'meter key' or rarely by purchasing special tokens.
Why do energy suppliers install prepayment meters?
Prepayment energy meters are usually installed into homes that have slipped into debt with their energy supplier at some point, to help them manage their debt and their budget more effectively. Some landlords also like to have them installed in their rental properties, to try and cut the risk of their tenants running into debt. If you have to switch to a prepayment meter because you're in debt to your energy supplier, you will pay off your debt bit by bit at the same time as you pay for the gas and electricity you use. This means that as well as paying the unit rate for the energy you use, you'll pay a little extra to go towards what you owe to the supplier.
How do I top up a prepayment meter key?
You will need to take your electricity key or gas card to your nearest Pay Point or post office. Pay Points are usually located in local convenience stores and local supermarkets and will usually have the pay point sign displayed.
How do I transfer credit onto the meter?
Insert your payment key into your meter. The screen will briefly show the amount of credit on your key. To make sure your credit is transferred onto your meter successfully; most suppliers will recommend you leave the key inserted for a few seconds before removing. If you live in a complex or apartment block your meter will usually be located in a communal meter cupboard and can be accessed via the concierge.
What happens if I lose my meter key?
If you lose your prepayment meter key or smart card you can contact your supplier to get a new one sent out. However, in the meantime your supplier should be able to authorise for you to collect a replacement from your nearest Pay Point or Post Office. They should also explain the process of how to activate the new meter key to your meter.
How do I check the credit on my meter?
Your Prepayment meter should have a digital screen which shows how much credit is left for you to use. You should check this regularly so you know when you need to top up. It's important to keep your gas or electricity meters topped up regularly. If you run out of credit, your gas or electricity supply may stop unexpectedly. However, most suppliers will allow offer a capped emergency credit if you're not able to top up your meter straight away
To start the emergency credit, you will need to insert your key fob or card into the machine as you do if you were topping it up and wait for the meter to show credit. However, this time it will show an amount but -£. If you do use emergency credit, you'll need to buy enough credit to repay it when you next top up. This is as well as any credit you’ll need to cover your usual energy use as any emergency credit will be wiped off automatically with the next payment.
Going on holiday
When you go away, you'll need to check you've got enough credit to last until you get back. Even if you've switched off all your appliances, your meter will collect a daily standing charge and will eat into the amount. You will also mostly likely be leaving appliances on (such as your fridge and freezer). If so, make sure you've got enough credit to cover those as if the electricity runs out and the appliance turns off it can cause leaks or your food to spoil.
How can I take a meter reading on a prepayment meter?
To get a meter reading from your prepayment meter, you will usually have to press a button on the meter (sometimes its blue). This will change the display from showing the remaining credit to showing the actual reading. From there on, it's just like taking a normal meter reading. There may be multiple screens showing debt etc. which maybe also be useful.
Can I change my meter to a standard meter?
Before switching your meter, your supplier may require certain conditions. These include that your account is debt free and, in some cases, that the account holder passes a credit check.
Please note that you will need the landlord's permission to change the meter – you can email us at Maintenance@cardiffestatesandlettings.co.uk to request this or for any further information.
What do I have to do at the end of the tenancy?
You will need to ensure that the prepayment meter is not in debt and the meter key fob is left in plain sight within the property as this will be collected on the booking out. If the meter key is not returned there will be a charge of £50+ VAT. We will then contact your supplier informing them that you have moved out of the property. At this point the meter should be wiped for the new occupant. This will ensure that any debt on the meter or to the supplier, which may be added to your tariff from non-payment, will be transferred to yourselves and not the next occupant.
Please not that if any maintenance works are to be carried out in the property, which are being claimed from the deposit and there is insufficient credit, Cardiff Estates & Lettings reserve the right to top the meter up on your behalf to conduct the works. This top up will be added onto any claim against the deposit.
Cardiff Estates & Lettings is a member of a Client Money Protection Scheme and is also a member of a redress scheme with the Property Ombudsman
Cardiff Estates and Lettings Ltd has an equal opportunities policy. The aim of our policy is to ensure that no employee, customer or interested party receives less favourable treatment because of age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy or maternity, race, religion or belief, sex or sexual orientation. A copy of this policy is available by request.
Cardiff Estates & Lettings, a Member of The Property Ombudsman, aims to provide the highest standards of service to all our customers. To ensure that your interests are safeguarded, a complaints procedure has been introduced. This provides for the matter to be dealt with internally and in the event that we are not able to deal with the issue to our mutual satisfaction, by reference to The Property Ombudsman. A copy of the full procedure is available by request.
Unless otherwise stated, Value Added Tax (VAT) is payable on all fees and expenses at the prevailing standard rate. Should the VAT rate increase or decrease at any stage, it will be charged at the prevailing standard rate applicable at the time of issuing an invoice.
Equal to 1 Week’s Rent:
Payable per property (not per applicant). Payment at the time of making an application for a property will reserve the property whilst references and checks are being carried out. This may be offset against the rent/deposit due or will not be refunded if it is considered a permittable fee
Schedule of charges for late payment of rent/other invoices:
Charges will apply if payment is not received in clear funds within 7 days of payment due date:
Default charge £60 +vat = £72
Per Phone Call/Text/E-mail £20 +vat = £24
Per Arrears letter £50+vat = £60
Per Invoice (charges & interest) £40 +vat each = £48
Per home visit £60 +vat = £72
Serving Section 8 Notice for non-payment of Rent £55 +vat = £66
Issue court proceedings £150 +vat = £180
Debt Recovery charge 20% of outstanding debt
These late payment charges only apply if action is taken where considered necessary. You are advised to notify us immediately in writing if you have any problems making payments on time.
Compound Interest charges for any late payment will be calculated at 3% above the Bank of England base rate for each day the payment is outstanding 14 days from the due date and will apply until payment is made in full
Breach of Contract:
Charges per Breach of Contract £60 +vat = £72
Charges for serious Breach of Contract i.e. Health & Safety Matter) £100 + vat = £120
Per Phone Call/Text/E-mail £20 +vat = £24
Per letter £50+vat = £60
Per Invoice (charges & interest) £40 +vat each = £48
Per home visit £60 +vat = £72
Serving Notice = £55 +vat = £66
Issue court proceedings £150 +vat = £180
These charges only apply regarding any issue that is in breach of your contract e.g. Nuisance, disconnecting smoke/heat detector
£60 +vat = £72 and any bank charges as applicable
This fee will be payable if a Cheque or Other Banking Payment is returned unpaid by your bank at any time
Call Out Charges/Keys/Fobs/Parking Permits:
Provide access using spare set of keys:
9.00am - 5.00pm, Mon – Fri £40 +vat = £48 if collected from/returned to the office, or £70 + vat = £84 for call out to the property
thereafter until Midnight, Mon – Fri £150 +vat = £180
Replacement standard keys £30 +vat = £36 each
Replacement fobs or specialist keys e.g. Development Specific:
variable (+ P&P) plus £25 +vat = £30 per fob/key
If necessary, you will be liable for full cost of replacement locks and keys.
Replacement Parking Permits £70.00 + vat = £84.00
These charges are applied if there is any issue regarding access into the property
Further charges may apply if a contractor is involved e.g. change of locks
Termination of Tenancy:
If you have agreed a fixed term contract, but you wish to end that contract before the fixed term end date you will be charged a break in tenancy fee. For example, if you wish to surrender keys to the property before the contract end date, or you wish to re- rent the property as a joint & several tenancy with other applicants, this will be considered a break in tenancy i.e. one tenancy will end and a new tenancy will be processed. Please also note that the rent will be re-negotiable for the new tenancy to be approved. If, however, a tenant who is named in the agreement wishes to move out and be replaced by another tenant in the same tenancy, this will only be by agreement with the landlord/agent but non chargeable, however there may be a request for a rent increase.
If a landlord agrees to release you from your contract at any stage before the fixed term end date, which will only be granted subject to contract of a replacement tenancy, you will be liable for an early termination fee of 1 month’s rent +vat (120%). This will be payable in advance. You will remain liable for rent payments until you have been officially released from contract, which will be confirmed to you in writing and you will also be liable for any other costs incurred as a result of your termination of contract.
Payment must be made by BACS transfer or Cheque as per contract. Any other form of payment will incur bank charges of £25 +vat = £30 for processing cash over £500, increasing to £50 +vat = £60 if over £2000 & further £10 +vat = £12 per £1000 thereafter
You will be charged £50 +vat = £60 if a token meter is installed at any time during your tenancy without written permission from the landlord/agent, for whatever reason. This is considered an unauthorised alteration.
If the meter key is not returned to the Agent at end of a tenancy as per contract there will be a further charge of £50 +vat = £60
Default fee if work done on your behalf £30 +vat = £36
Default fee for incorrect payments e.g. overpayment of rent refund £30 +vat = £36
Request for references/other documentation £50 +vat = £60 payable by 3rd party agent or landlord
Missed Appointment default fee £35 +vat = £42
Late Appointment default fee £25 +vat = £30
Out of Hours Appointment default fee £100 +vat = £120
Any delays in the checkout process caused by the tenant default fee of £60 +vat = £72
There is a charge for us to deal with any third party other than a tenant named on the tenancy agreement or a named guarantor with authorisation from the named tenant
Request to deal with a third party regarding the tenancy £75 +vat = £90 payable by the third party
There is an in-house professional cleaning facility available should you require this service.
Charges for a Professional Apartment Clean are as follows:
Studio £130 + vat = £156 1 Bed £160 + vat = £192
2 Bed £250 + vat = £300 3 Bed £350 + vat = £420
(+£72 including vat added per additional room)
You may elect to clean the property yourself; however, costs will be incurred if the property or items within (e.g. oven, microwave etc.) are not cleaned to the standard set by the inventory, which was signed by you on your moving in date. You will be charged as above for a Professional Apartment Clean, £50 + vat = £60 (price may vary subject to specialist cleaning e.g. oven) for any one specific individual item/appliance & £40 + vat = £48 for each specific individual item/appliance thereafter.
Cardiff Estates & Lettings will assess the level of cleaning considered necessary at the end of a tenancy to determine whether the property requires cleaning prior to a new tenancy. Cardiff Lettings will decide whether this should be a full clean chargeable at the above rates or a sparkle clean, calculated at a reduced rate. The level of cleaning required will be at our discretion, based on the moving out report and will be charged accordingly unless a tenant can prove that they have had the property professionally cleaned to an acceptable standard.
Please note that the above charges do not include cost of any specialised cleaning, repair or replacement of anything within the property (e.g. carpets / upholstery etc. that are soiled /damaged, or need to be chemically cleaned).
If necessary, you must defrost the freezer at the end of the tenancy, carefully containing & removing defrosted ice. You will be charged £80 + vat = £96 if this is not done. Further charges will apply if defrosted ice is allowed to empty onto the floor, or causes any damages.
You will be responsible for replacing with new all mattress protectors that have been used
with quality (polycotton quilted, not plastic) leaving them on the beds in their packaging.
Any not replaced if used will be purchased on your behalf & chargeable to you.
Bulbs & Smoke Alarms
It is your responsibility to replace & install any bulbs & batteries as necessary. If any bulbs, spotlight clips, or batteries are identified as requiring replacement on your moving out date you will be charged Minimum £15 + vat = £18 per bulb/battery/clip, but this price will vary depending on unit cost of the item to be installed. If bulbs/batteries are replaced but left for Cardiff Estates & Lettings to install, a default fee will still be charged of £60 + vat = £72
You will be charged £60 + vat = £72 per item for the removal & disposal of any large personal belongings that are left in the property at the end of a tenancy not belonging to the Landlord e.g. furniture. Smaller items, such as pots & pans will charged at £10 + vat = £12 per item. General waste will be charged at £15 + vat = £18 per black bag. Cardiff Estates & Lettings will not be held liable for the storage, or return of any such items