These Residential Lettings Agency Terms and Conditions (Letting & Deposit Holding Service) are for use by estate agents specialising in lettings and property management. They set out the Agency’s and the Owner’s responsibilities and provide for commission to be paid to the Agency. The Terms and Conditions, together with the Residential Lettings Agency Appointment Form (Letting & Deposit Holding Service), create a contract between the Agency and the Owner.
This version of the Terms and Conditions should be used where the Agency’s role is limited to finding a tenant, setting up a tenancy and protecting the tenant’s security deposit in an authorised scheme. If the Agent is also to be responsible for collecting rent or managing the property, the “Rent Collection” or “Fully Managed” versions of the Terms and Conditions should be used instead. If the Owner is to handle the deposit, the “Letting Only” version should be used.
The Terms and Conditions include provisions relating to the Energy Performance Certificates and the Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) which came into force on 1 April 2018.
The Terms and Conditions also include provisions relating to the mandatory requirements for letting agents to be members of a Client Money Protection Scheme which come into force on the 01 April 2019. This statement must be included if the Agent holds client money.
These Terms and Conditions have been updated to incorporate provisions relating to the Tenant Fees Act 2019 (in force 01 June 2019). In respect of properties in England, security deposits for new or renewed tenancies caught by the Tenant Fees Act 2019 are to be capped at five weeks' rent for a tenancy with an annual rent under £50,000 or capped at six weeks' rent for a tenancy with an annual rent of £50,000 or more.
Security deposits for assured shorthold tenancies in Wales are not currently capped but the Renting Homes (Fees etc.) (Wales) Act 2019 (in force 01 September 2019) gives the Welsh government the power to introduce caps in the future.
Clause 1 contains definitions and in some cases refers to information contained in the Appointment Form.
Clause 2 covers the appointment of the Agent.
Clause 3 sets out the duties of the Agent. These include preparing particulars, vetting potential tenants, setting up a tenancy and handling the tenant’s security deposit.
Clause 4 sets out the duties of the Owner. These include obtaining any consents that may be required from the Owner’s insurers, landlord or mortgage company, complying with statutory obligations regarding gas appliances, electrical equipment and fire safety and paying the Commission to the Agent.
Clause 5 deals with termination of the contract between the Agent and the Owner.
Clause 6 relates to renewal or continuation of the tenancy. If the tenant remains in occupation after the expiry of the original tenancy, the Agent is entitled to receive additional commission (the “Renewal Commission”).
Clause 7 makes reference to the Agent’s complaints handling procedure and confirms which of the three approved redress schemes the Agent belongs to.
Clauses 8 to 12 contain standard legal interpretation wording and provisions regarding the service of notices and VAT. Optional phrases / clauses are enclosed in square brackets. These should be read carefully and selected so as to be compatible with one another. Unused options should be removed from the document.
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