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Handbook notes by AST clause

HANDBOOK NOTES
BY AST CLAUSE
BERKSHIRE HOUSE RESIDENTIAL LTD
PERSONAL IDENTITY (GENERAL TERMS 3.4)
Right to Rent
It is a legal duty for Landlords to check that every tenant has the right to live in the United Kingdom. To do this, we need to take
copies of your original documentation proving your nationality and that you have the legal Right to Rent a property here.
The information provided helps us confirm your legal status and will not be used to discriminate against you.
Essential Living will need to photocopy your original documents such as passport, driving license, ID etc. and submit this to
Keysafe (our referencing company) for visual and data checks to confirm they are genuine.
Essential Living are not permitted to rent to you if you do not have the necessary documentation that is currently valid.
Additional checks would be required for those on time limited visas.
Please visit the following website for more information: keysafetv.com/assets/guidance_notes.pdf
RENT
Your rent is a calendar monthly charge for the property you live in, and reflects the size and type of property you have. (Y.3.1.)
The calendar month rental payment is calculated in the following way: (weekly rent x 52 weeks) ÷ 12 months
For example: £750 x 52 = £39,000. Divided by 12 = £3,250 per calendar month
We want to ensure that all rent (Direct Debits) is received on the 1st day of each month after the initial month so dependent on
what date your tenancy commences the initial rental payment would be calculated in one of the following two ways:
Method 1
Arrival before the 15th day of the month (inclusive). For example, 11th September. This resident would pay from the 11-30th
September (inclusive) = 20 days.
As the tenancy starts before the 16th of the month, the time required to setup the Direct Debit (takes 8-10 working days) is
possible, so that the 2nd months’ rent is received on the 1st of the month.
So this would be calculated by: Annual rental £23,400 divided by 365 days = £106.85 times the number of rental days (11th
September to the 30th September) 20 = £2137.00 less the booking fee (£1,000.00) = £1,137.00 rent payable, plus the deposit.
Method 2
Arrival after the 16th of the month (inclusive). For example, 27th September. This resident would pay from the 27th September
to the 31st October (inclusive) = 35 days.
So this would be calculated by: Annual rental £39,000 divided by 365 days = £106.85 times the number of rental days (27th
September to the 30th September inclusive) 4 = £427.40 plus the full next calendar month’s rent of £3,250. Total rental
payment = £427.40 + £3,250 = £3,677.40 less the booking fee = £2,677.40 rent payable plus deposit. Direct debit would then be
ready for the future months.
Additional services included in your AST
As detailed on your Assured Shorthold Tenancy (AST), we have arranged several centrally contracted utility services; these have
been arranged so we are able to negotiate supply contracts on behalf of all our residents removing some of the necessary
administration that you would usually have to undertake personally.
These services are domestic cold water, electricity, heating, hot water and cooling (if applicable). We will add an Estimate
Contribution figure onto your monthly payment to cover the cost of these utilities.
At the end of your tenancy we will supply you with a statement of consumption for the service for you to be able to view.
INVENTORY (Y.2.2)
We will arrange and manage the move-in inventory (at no cost to you) at the start of your tenancy. It is recommended that
you are present at this inventory as it forms the basis of comparison when you come to depart. A copy is given to you for your
records and also will be loaded on the residents’ portal.
Should you be unable to attend you will be provided with a copy of the inventory report and will have five days in which to
make any challenge/amendments, failing which the report will be considered accepted.
Any challenges or requested amendments must be supported by photographic evidence, which will be added to the inventory
documentation and agreed by both parties.
A copy of the inventory will be placed on the residents’ portal for reference.
On notification of your departure we will arrange and manage for the check-out inventory (at no cost to you) to be carried out.
Again, it is recommended that you are present.
Prior to the inspection, you will need to ensure that the property is in the condition it was at the check-in inventory; save for
fair wear and tear. Failure to do this may result in charges being levied to rectify these items.
UTILITIES (Y.3.2, W.3.1, W.3.2 AND W.3.3)
You are provided with an Estimate Contribution for utilities within your monthly payment, which means you only have one
accommodation bill to worry about (provided you do not exceed the Estimate Contribution). We believe this approach
provides an easier, hassle-free environment and is particularly helpful for you and your financial planning.
Your utilities (domestic cold water, electricity, heat and hot water and cooling (if applicable)) are included as an Estimate
Contribution. Therefore, we request you use these facilities with consideration to ensure you do not exceed the Estimate
Contribution and that sustainability is maintained to ensure we can reduce our impact on the environment.
All utilities provided to the apartments across the development are individually metered and monitored on a periodic basis so
that we are able to proactively work with residents to minimise the energy use within the apartment, should they exceed the
Estimate Contribution set for the specific apartment type.
The purpose of this policy is to bring about awareness of the usage of utilities and to encourage residents to be considerate
and careful in their use of these services and to encourage them to make ‘greener’ choices.
The utilities subject to this policy are: domestic cold water, electricity, heat and hot water, and cooling (if applicable).
Throughout the apartments and the property, the infrastructures supporting these services have been designed to be as
efficient and economic as possible. To assist residents, additional features have been installed such as A-rated appliances
and LED lighting. Also, the energy display which forms part of your access control system and has been fitted to display your
energy usage.
You are entitled to use the utilities as you wish and you will be charged for the amount you have used in excess of the Estimate
Contribution, as shown by the actual reconciled meter readings.
The ‘Estimate Contribution’ is our best estimate at this time. As our developments are new builds we have little historical data
to assist. However, in future years historical data will be available to assist in calculating the Estimate Contribution.
Estimated utility contribution policy
The following is an explanation of our estimated utility contribution policy:
Residents’ team, pre-arrival and new residents:
• Prior to your arrival in the apartment the on-site residents’ team will have carried out a thorough review to ensure all
services are operating efficiently
• At the time of the move in and Inventory check a record of the utilities meter readings will be taken and all future
consumption calculations will be taken from this figure
• On arrival the residents’ team will carry out an induction with you of the services and assist in explaining how these work
within the apartment
Your rights:
We will periodically provide you with evidence of your actual usage of the utilities and services used for consideration. We
will invite you to discuss with us any measures that you feel will be supportive in helping you manage your usage and where
possible to reduce your future usage.
Your responsibilities:
• To make sensible use of energy, of your electrical equipment and services within the apartment so that you can assist the
community within the development to reduce its overall carbon footprint
• This may include reviewing your energy consumption, ensuring everyone is clear of their responsibility to use utilities fairly
and to make greener choices whenever possible
• To read available hints, tips and advice on best practice to support energy efficiency
• To bring to our attention any situations which may be causing you concern regarding the minimum use of utilities, so that we
have a timely opportunity to offer support
Our responsibilities:
• We will work with our brokers and negotiate collectively on behalf of all residents the best utilities prices that we can
• We will monitor actual consumption apartment by apartment via the building management system and utility meter readings
on a periodic basis and report to you your usage levels
• During your stay the Residents’ team will offer continued support through providing helpful tips, and sharing successful
good practice approaches to reduce use
• We will notify you if your or their usage is 20% or more over the most up to date Estimate Contribution figure
• If your energy use is considered to be excessive, we would notify you of the additional charges that will be levied so you are
able to budget and at the same time we would assist in making recommendation on how to reduce your consumption
• In the event that you are consistently found to be using more than the Estimate Contribution, we will be entitled to increase
the Estimate Contribution element of your rent to reflect the revised Estimate Contribution amount
• In the event that you are consistently found to be using less than the Estimate Contribution, we will be entitled to reduce
the Estimate Contribution element of your rent to reflect the revised Estimate Contribution amount
Other utilities
You must register with the Council Tax Department and pay Council Tax for the term of the tenancy, as this is a new property
the Valuation office hasn’t set the cost yet, please still contact the council and register with them, they will advise of the
process going forward and might be able to advise of the approximate cost. Here is a link to Islington council although you will
need to call 01628 683800 (Mon-Fri 9am-5pm) or review the council website: rbwm.gov.uk/info/200124/council_tax
You must register (in your name) for TV license for the term of the tenancy, please find link to the website: tvlicensing.co.uk/
cs/pay-for-your-tv-licence/index.app#iPayForTVL
You must not install any water payment meters at the premises or change water suppliers. You can change the electricity
supplier and install an electricity meter at the premises as long as you agree to pay the full cost of any transfer or installation or
other related charges that apply, including making good any damage caused as a result of the change. You must notify Essential
Living in writing in advance of any works commencing and provide the name and reference number of the new supplier.
Essential Living can withdraw this permission for good reason and after giving reasonable notice.
If any of the fixed lighting fails please contact the residents’ team who will arrange for the bulbs to be replaced.
You must not damage electric wires or overload the electrical circuits by using inappropriate multi-socket electrical adaptors
or extension cables which are not surge protected when connecting appliances to the mains.
RENT INCREASES (W.4.1)
Any 1 year tenancy that requests to renew at the end of the 1 year term would be renegotiated with our lettings team at the
prevailing market rent at the time of the renewal request.
Any longer term tenancy (3 years maximum) have an automatic rent review built in to the Assured Shorthold Tenancy (AST) and
are reviewed in October each year.
Rent reviews are calculated using a formula to ensure that rental increases paid are fair. This formula bases the review on the
Retail Price Index (RPI) in the September before the change is due, plus 0.5%.
Prior to any increase of your rent 2 months’ written notice will be issued in writing for those tenancies that are for longer
than 12 months. For clarification, the above longer term tenancy formula would not be used to calculate any increase of the
standard 12 month Assured Shorthold Tenancy that is requested to be extended.
USE OF YOUR HOME (W.8.3)
Being a good neighbour
How you get on with your neighbours can be one of the most important factors in determining whether you are happy in your
home. We must remind you that any nuisance in or around your home, caused by yourself, family members or visitors, is a
breach of your tenancy agreement.
We do not tolerate nuisance, annoyance or harassment to us, our residents, or visitors to the building and complaints of this
nature will be formally investigated and action taken.
You must respect your neighbours and not do anything in your home or the building which causes a nuisance or annoyance to
us or your neighbours or visitors to the building. In particular, you must not play any music, TV or computer games which can be
heard outside your home between 10pm & 8.30am.
Failure to abide by the rules and regulations may result in Essential Living issuing a Notice of Community Violation. This will set
out the issue and request the required action to be taken.
Anti-social behaviour FAQs
What is anti-social behaviour?
Anti-social behavior (ASB) can be anything from noise or nuisance to incidents of violence or intimidation. Examples are:
• Noise – playing loud music; frequent parties; very loud television
• Lifestyle clashes
• Racial harassment
• Criminal behaviour
• Violence and domestic abuse
• Dogs barking for long periods of time
When is noise anti-social behaviour?
Nuisance caused by noise is a big cause of problems between neighbours. Excessive noise by loud music, revving engines or DIY
work can disturb everyone. You should be considerate to your neighbours at all times and keep noise to a minimum.
What can I do to stop my noise from disturbing other people?
Noise between properties, particularly flats, can be reduced by:
• Placing TV, radios and stereos away from shared walls.
• Always keep the volume down to reasonable levels particularly late at night & early in the morning.
• Carrying out household activities such as using the vacuum cleaner/washing machine at reasonable times of the day.
What should I do if I think I am a victim of anti-social behaviour?
Contact the residents’ team as soon as possible after the incident and tell us what happened, record details of any further
incidents using the incident log we will give you, and encourage any other witnesses to contact us.
Why do I have to complete incident diary? I have told you about the problem, can you just go & deal with it?
Incident diaries are absolutely invaluable to us because they describe what has happened, who is involved, how it affects you
and whether anybody else has seen the incident. If you write your diary as soon as you can after the incident has happened it
is fresh in your mind and you are writing it in your own words. The best evidence for us is from the witnesses who have actually
seen or been subjected to the anti-social behaviour.
If we decide to challenge the perpetrator we will look at the information in the incident diary to use this to reinforce our case.
If you have written things down soon after the incident we can be confident that we have the right details to challenge the
perpetrator. If the case ever went to legal action, diary sheets are direct evidence that we can use.
Please note that your identity will be known by the residents’ team only and your information will never be released to the
person of whom you are making a complaint about.
VISITORS (W.8.4)
So that we are able to maintain building security, if you have a visitor that is staying and you would like them to have a fob/keys
for your apartment, you will need to complete a visitor Access Waiver. This should be done for anyone who would like to be
issued an access fob/key or is staying more than 7 days.
The Access Waiver form can be obtained from the residents’ team, or via essentialliving.co.uk/handbook
ANIMALS AND PETS (W.9.1)
We have designated pet-friendly floors within our properties, where likeminded residents can enjoy their pets. These floors are
located throughout each of our developments on varying floors.
You must ask for permission if you want to keep a pet in your home. If you are allowed a pet you are responsible for it at all
times, ensuring it does not cause a nuisance to neighbours or damage the apartment. This will be by way of a pet licence.
We reserve the right to revoke the pet licence should your pet become a nuisance to the landlord or other residents. Should
this be the case you will be instructed to remove your pet from the building.
Please note: pets are restricted to nominated floors only and no pets are allowed in the communal areas of the building.
ALTERATIONS/INSTALLATIONS (W.12.2)
An alteration is considered as anything which changes the fabric of the apartment from its original state at the start of your
tenancy. This includes things like fitting shelves, painting walls or putting up pictures.
You will be required to return the apartment to its original decorative state on ending your tenancy with us to ensure charges
are not deducted from your deposit.
We are flexible to you making decorative alterations to your home but you will require written permission from us prior to you
starting any work.
Written request with full detail of the works being requested to be given to the residents’ team prior to any works being
commenced. A copy of permission request procedure can be obtained from the residents’ team.