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Our Fees

Details on our fees to Landlords and Tenants...

The Property Obudsman

Torbay Accommodation Bureau Limited Standard Terms and Fees for Tenants


Set up fees

A set up fee of £150 INCLUDING VAT per property will be charged to include up to two applicants named on the same tenancy agreement (excluding guarantor), this will be payable upon the creation of a legally binding tenancy agreement. This fee includes references provided by an independent referencing company, Ref4Rents, contribution towards tenancy agreement, administration fees and VAT. Additional applicants above the first two people named on the tenancy agreement for the same property will be charged £75 PER PERSON INCLUDING VAT, this will only apply if they are to be named tenants on the tenancy agreement and the landlord has permitted more than two adults to live at the property. Should a guarantor be required for the property and, provided the landlord is prepared to accept a guarantor, the cost of the guarantor application will be £75 INCLUDING VAT , the guarantor (multiple guarantors are not permitted) will be subject to the same referencing criteria as a tenant and will also be responsible for paying the cost of any bank reference directly to their bank in addition to this fee.

These fees do not include the cost of bank references which are charged separately by your bank, it is your responsibility to pay for the cost of a bank reference directly to your bank for providing this service in addition to the standard administration fee. Most banks usually charge between £10 and £15 for this service and this is non refundable even in the event of your reference being unsatisfactory. Should the tenancy not proceed or your references be returned unsatisfactory you will be charged £30 INCLUDING VAT for each reference application form submitted on your behalf to Ref4Rents, the independent referencing company, if the tenancy does proceed it is incorporated within the administration fees outlined above. All tenancies are subject to satisfactory references and subject to contract.

A reference may be requested by a tenant at any time, an administration fee for this service is £25 INCLUDING VAT and is payable upon request.

Holding Deposit

Once you have selected a Property a holding deposit is usually required from you which enables us to hold the Property for you subject to contract and subject to satisfactory references. However this does not in any way form a contract or any obligation upon Torbay Accommodation Bureau Limited or the Landlord. At this stage and, subject to the Landlord’s agreement, we will advise other applicants that the Property is under offer. The holding deposit is a financial commitment from you that you are a bona fide applicant intending to rent the property in question. Should your references fail or you are not accepted by the landlord you will receive a refund of the holding deposit less the cost of any references that have been submitted, using the charging structure outlined under the header ‘ Administration Fees’ in this document, if the application forms have been submitted. Should you withdraw from the prospective tenancy at any stage between payment of a holding deposit and signing the tenancy agreement, even before the receipt of the reference results, you would forfeit this holding deposit in full to the landlord, therefore it is non refundable. Once the tenancy agreement has been signed the holding deposit is offset against the payment of the indemnity deposit and first month’s rental but the holding deposit becomes payable as soon as you express an interest in renting a property. The payment of a holding deposit does not hold the property for you indefinitely, before any application is submitted or payment of any funds a pre agreed start date of a prospective tenancy will be determined and once established this will be the date a tenancy will be expected to commence subject to contract and subject to satisfactory references. Should you fail in your obligation to meet the predetermined tenancy start date you will forfeit in full your holding deposit to the landlord.

The amount of the holding deposit is determined as follows –

Payment of rent

The first instalment of rent must be paid in cleared funds when you sign the tenancy agreement. Thereafter, rent is payable by standing order (unless agreed otherwise) to arrive on the due date as stated in the tenancy agreement. This means that the standing order must be set up so that the funds leave your account three days before the rent is due. The full rent must be paid by a single standing order; we are unable to accept multiple standing orders.

Deposit

A deposit equivalent to one month’s rent must be paid in cleared funds when you sign the tenancy agreement (for some properties this may be higher but this will be shown on the property details) and is submitted to the custodial scheme of The Deposit Protection Service www.depositprotection.com and held in accordance with their terms and conditions for the duration of the tenancy agreement entered in to. Torbay Accommodation Bureau Limited excludes liability in relation to loss caused by the insolvency of a financial institution which holds deposits in its contracts with landlords and tenants.

All deposit deductions must be agreed in writing by both landlord and tenant upon the termination of the tenancy. The tenancy agreement entered into is between the landlord and the tenant and, therefore, the tenant cannot hold Torbay Accommodation Bureau Limited liable for any deductions made from the deposit which may fall into dispute.

Payment of a holding deposit is offset against the payment of this indemnity deposit.

Example application

2 x adults applying to rent a property as joint tenants for £625 per calendar month

Initial cost to move in to the property = £1400 + 2 x bank reference fees (circa £20 - £30) made up as follows:

Tenancy start date scheduled for 3rd December 2013 subject to contract and subject to satisfactory references.

Using the example above, if the applicants reference replies had been returned unsatisfactory, at the point of the replies being received the application would be terminated and the situation at this stage would be a refund due to the applicants of £240 of their £300 holding deposit as £60 (2 x £30 references) would be retained to pay for Ref4Rents referencing costs, in addition the applicants would have also borne the cost of their bank reference fees.

References/Identification

We will take up references through an independent referencing company together with your bank based on the details that you have supplied to us on the application forms. It is your responsibility to ensure that all information provided on the application forms is correct and should you provide false information, fail to disclose a criminal record or poor credit history or fail to comply or cooperate with the referencing company or ourselves during the process this will result in the termination of your application and the forfeiture of your holding deposit. These references may be passed to our client so that they can make a decision on granting a tenancy. You are responsible for any administration charges levied by your own bank in relation to obtaining a reference. Before the tenancy can proceed you need to provide us with a photo ID in the form of a passport or EU driving licence.

The referencing company will validate your address through the electoral roll, if you are not found on the electoral roll you will need to provide proof of residence by providing two from any of the following documents - a utility bill, bank statement, telephone or credit card bill dated within 3 months of the application.

The referencing company criteria require you to have an annual income of 36 times the monthly rental of the property you are applying for. Good credit history is also required; if you have an unsatisfied bankruptcy, county court judgement, IVA or debt management plan this will fail the credit reference. Should you have any doubts as to the status of your credit report you are advised to check your credit rating before applying to rent a property and before submitting an application form. Employers, together with previous and current landlords will also be contacted as part of the referencing process, you may be asked to provide payslips, bank statements and P60’s to validate income, please note that only basic income is factored in to the salary, bonuses and overtime are not included as they cannot be guaranteed. Your employer will be asked as to whether your employment is considered permanent or temporary, temporary contracts may not pass the referencing therefore you are advised to disclose this information to Torbay Accommodation Bureau Limited before committing to any referencing or application for a property. For self employed individuals three years accountant certified accounts of the trading business at the time of application will be required showing annual income of 36 times the monthly rental for the prior three year period. For other forms of income, such as pensions, the statements of income will be required validating the amounts being paid. Bank reference replies are required to confirm that you are able to commit to the monthly rental of the property being suggested and by doing so you are not likely to put a strain on your finances. The response we require from the bank in answer to our status enquiry is ‘the customer is considered good for the purpose of your enquiry’, unfortunately the response that ‘the proposed commitment seems high but the customer is unlikely to enter in to a commitment that they cannot afford’ or anything else, including the bank failing to respond, is considered to be unsatisfactory. No refunds will be provided for failed or aborted reference applications.

It is your responsibility to disclose any material facts and information that may harm or be relevant to your application prior to paying any fees or submitting any application forms, information provided on the application forms cannot be amended retrospectively once submitted.

Check-in and check-out

Torbay Accommodation Bureau Limited will be instructed by the landlord as to what arrangements are to be made for the inventory and check-in and check-out of the property .We advise you to make yourself available for the check-in and check-out.

Management of the property

At the start of the tenancy we will advise you who is responsible for managing the property. This is not always Torbay Accommodation Bureau Limited. Where we are not managing the property we cannot authorise any repairs or maintenance or guarantee the speed at which repairs will be carried out. Where we are managing the property, we may have to obtain the landlord’s consent before proceeding with a repair. Where we manage a property and hold keys, we can usually provide access to Torbay Accommodation Bureau Limited’s contractors (with your permission). However, where we do not hold keys or the contractor is not willing to collect keys, it is your responsibility to provide access.

Insurance

It is your responsibility to insure your own belongings throughout the tenancy.

Utilities

You will be responsible for the payment of telephone, gas, water and electricity accounts at the property during your tenancy, as well as the council tax. It is your responsibility to notify the relevant companies and the local authority that you are moving into/out of the property. You are also responsible for ensuring that a valid television licence remains in place for the duration of the tenancy. Utility companies will also always require the occupant to provide access for any visit.

Taxation

If you pay rent directly to your landlord’s bank account and your landlord is resident overseas, you will be responsible for applying the provisions of the HM Revenue and Customs Non-Resident Landlords scheme for taxing UK rental income and should ask us for advice on this. These provisions do not apply where you are paying your rent directly to Torbay Accommodation Bureau Limited.

Anti-Money Laundering Regulations

Torbay Accommodation Bureau Limited is subject to the Money Laundering Regulations 2007. As a result we will need to ask you for suitable identification, and will be unable to proceed with any work on your behalf if we are unable to obtain this from you.

VAT

All charges levied by Torbay Accommodation Bureau Limited are subject to the addition of VAT at the prevailing rate.

Complaints procedure

We are committed to providing you with the highest standards of service. However, there may be occasions when our service falls short of your expectations. This procedure is designed to help you make us aware of your views so we can address your concerns.

Our complaints procedure has been designed to meet the requirements of all the regulatory authorities that control our business.

Tell us what part of our service or procedure you are unhappy about and what you would like us to do to resolve the matter.

You can do this by writing to:-

Torbay Accommodation Bureau Limited
Suite 15 Castle Circus House
136 Union Street
Torquay
Devon
TQ2 5QG

If you prefer you may telephone on 01803 292987 or visit our office. Alternatively you may forward full details of your dissatisfaction by email to enquiries@torbayaccommodation.co.uk

Your concerns will be considered by a director of the business, who will investigate the matter.

We will send you written acknowledgement within five working days.

You will be told, in the written acknowledgement, who is to be responsible for investigating the issues raised.

Where possible you will receive a detailed response within fifteen working days of our acknowledgement of your complaint.

Should further time be required to investigate your concerns, then you will receive a written explanation for any delay.

If we do not hear from you within a further eight weeks from our response we will assume the matter has been addressed and close our file.

Should you have concerns in the meantime please contact the member of staff whose name appears on the letter of acknowledgment.

After receiving our response, if you feel your complaint has not been fully addressed please let us know, your letter will be acknowledged within five working days of receipt

A final response will be issued where possible, within fifteen working days of the acknowledgement of your request for a further review. If we are unable to respond within fifteen working days we will inform you of when we anticipate answering your concern and informing you of your right to appeal to a third party.

We are committed to ensuring all concerns are fully and fairly addressed and we respect your right to refer any complaint to a third party. Therefore in our final letter to you we will let you know the details of the regulatory bodies who you can approach for further arbitration.

We are members of both the Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA) and The Property Ombudsman (TPO).

Amendments

Torbay Accommodation Bureau Limited reserves the right to change the schedule of fees and these terms of business upon providing reasonable notice in writing.