What will the landlords do?
The landlords will show the students around their property, explain the terms of the tenancy and the finances. If the students are interested in taking the property, the landlords will explain about the requirement for a guarantor, and provide a copy of the tenancy agreement for the students to look over before signing. No deposit should be paid until they are happy with the terms of the tenancy and have a guarantor confirmed. If they change their minds after paying a deposit, it is likely that they won’t get the deposit back!
What can I do to help my son or daughter?
Talk to them about their finances, and help them understand how it works. Deposits will need to be paid to landlords to secure a property, and this could be some time before starting at university. Often student do not realise that rent has to be paid by the dates set on the tenancy agreements. Many students rely on their funding, but often this arrives after the dates set on the tenancy, so a contingency plan needs to be in place for payments! Whether that is an arrangement through a bank or them using their savings, it is an important fact that is often overlooked.*
Many students have not lived independently before and are moving away from home for the first time. Knowing how to use a washing machine, knowing what a stop cock is and what it does, or understanding that if condensation is not wiped away from window panes it can cause blackspot mould, are areas of property management that they should be made aware of. Make sure that they understand that their weekly ‘food shop’ should also include cleaning products to clean kitchens and bathrooms! They will be responsible for the cleaning of their new home. Do they know that vacuum cleaners are not ‘self-clean’ and will need emptying when full? Make sure that they understand that if rubbish is not removed from the house and bagged correctly, vermin may be enticed to their home.