FAQ's for Students
A students’ rite of passage is to live independently. Whilst studying in Brighton we believe this should be a memorable and exciting experience and we aim to facilitate your accommodation to be as enjoyable and stress free as possible
We have a wide variety of good standard student housing ranging from 2 to 9 bedroom properties located close to Brighton University, Hanover, Lewes Road, Preston Circus, Coombe Road area, Elm Grove and Kemp Town.
Our friendly team are on hand to help you find your next home and will make the process as smooth as possible.Register your details on our mobile friendly website and receive email alerts straight into your inbox of all new property’s that match your criteria.ALL STUDENTS MUST BE OVER 18 YEARS OLD AND BE IN FULL TIME EDUCATION
If a group is interested in reserving one of our properties please contact the office who will take your contact details. We do not operate a ‘first come first served policy’, if more than one group is interested in securing a property we take all details and then liaise with the landlord.
If a group is successful one applicant will be sent an email requesting the full groups contact details and forwarding addresses. This enables us to send out all the property information to all applicants so an informed decision can be made before placing agency fees which are non-refundable.
Agency fees are £225.00 per person inclusive of VAT which covers the cost of referencing one tenant and one guarantor (if required). The fee covers obtaining a current & or past landlord reference, credit check, right to rent and visa check, agreeing contract terms, preparation of the tenancy, arranging of move in, prescribed information and check-in of the property. Guarantors are referenced on being a home owner through land registry, credit checks and income verification, also required is photographic identification. Each guarantor will be sent a deed of guarantee to sign electronically via DocuSign.
If applicants are changed then a new agency fee is due even if the person has not been referenced. If applicants drop out of the group and replacements are not immediately found, then the property will be re-marketed with agency fees being lost.
Agency fees are non-refundable even if an applicant is not referenced and if references prove to be unsatisfactory for any reason. A tenancy will be granted subject to referencing and contracts.
Each applicant will be emailed a specimen copy of the tenancy agreement, the government ‘How to rent guide’ the property’s Energy performance certificate (EPC) and our agency information. Each applicant must sign the agency fee information to say that they have read and understand the documents which have been sent, this is signed electronically via DocuSign.
Once this has been signed and received we will contact all applicants to place agency fees which will secure the property. Please note that agency fees are non-refundable once placed.
Applicants may not necessarily be chased for the forms to be signed so please contact the office for a progress update as the property will still be marketed until agency fees are placed.
DocuSign is software that provides electrical signature technology for facilitating electronic exchanges of contracts. An electronic signature can be adopted or an original uploaded to the program.
Once agency fees have been placed referencing forms will be sent which can be completed and signed electronically via DocuSign.
All referencing forms must be returned within 1 week of them being sent. Failure to return the forms correctly and within this time may result in the property being re-marketed and the loss of agency fees. If you have any extenuating circumstances please contact the office.
Each applicant will require a guarantor who must be a UK home owner, UK citizen and have an income of over 3 x the tenant’s share of the annual rent or the equivalent in savings. If a guarantor fails the referencing then each subsequent guarantor is charged at £60.00 inclusive of VAT.
If an applicant does not have a guarantor then they can pay 6 months’ rent in advance which covers the first month’s rent and the last 5, then paying the rent monthly from month 2 onwards. Please note that some landlord’s request that the whole rent is paid up front, i.e. 12 months.
All applicants must prove that they have a right to reside in the UK and we require that all UK and EU applicants bring their passports / national identification cards (EU) or permanent resident cards to the office in person for our records. Copies cannot be accepted. For applicants outside of the EU we will require your passport and valid visa / permanent resident’s card. More information can be found: https://www.gov.uk/check-tenant-right-to-rent-documents. These checks must be done within a month of placing agency fees, or sooner subject to the start date of the tenancy.
Once all applicants have been referenced a tenancy agreement will be sent electronically via DocuSign, only after this agreement is signed will the property be 100% secure.
A joint tenancy can be agreed between two or more people. Each tenant is jointly and severally liable for meeting the terms of the tenancy agreement in full, including the payment of rent. This is known as 'joint and several liability' and is the tenancy you will be signing.
One 'lead' tenant will act on behalf of all tenants and will be the main point of contact during the tenancy. The security deposit will be returned to the lead tenant ONLY and only they can liaise with the deposit team regarding any deductions made to the deposit at the end of the tenancy.
This is due to be paid on or before the 4th June of the calendar year and a reminder will be sent closer to the time along with details on how this can be paid. This can be paid individually and there are no charges for individual payments or payments made over the phone.
The rent is paid monthly and due in advance from one account only and payment is due 5 days in advance. The weekly advertised rent is based on 52 weeks even if the contract is for 11 months. Please note that there are not 4 weeks in a calendar month.
We accept bank transfers but please ensure that you put a property reference so we can allocate this to the property. Debit card payments can be made over the phone or in person in the office. Once payments have been receipted on our system the tenant will be emailed a copy of the receipt and card payment receipts will be at the office. Please note that we do not accept credit cards, cheques or cash payments. If you are transferring funds from overseas please be aware that this will not show in our account for a few days and there may be charges from your bank.
Once the security deposit has been paid it will be protected under a government scheme within 30 days and the lead tenant will receive a confirmation email to this effect. Details of the scheme used are found on your tenancy agreement.
The lead tenant will be contacted closer to the move in date to arrange a time and date for the check-in at the property. Tenants do not have to move in on their start date however we do need to pre book an appointment to meet at the property to hand over the keys and property information such as the tenancy agreement, EPC, gas safety, EICR, deposit protection certificate information etc. and we will be on hand to assist on any queries regarding the property in person.
Tenants do not need to move in on the tenancy start date but do need to book a check in time with the first tenant who moved into the property. Please be aware that August and September is a busy time for us and check in slots can be booked up very quickly.
All supplies will be connected when you move into the property. Your inventory will have the current meter readings and you will need to set up account with each supplier, we advise that all tenants’ names are put on all bills. Your move in pack contains useful numbers you can call to find out the suppliers.
The agency information contains the prices for a ‘bills included option’ which is subject to the consent of the landlord. This is based on a fair usage policy.
If all students are in full time education include placement year students you can defer your council tax. This can be done online with your student registration numbers. Please note that if this is not deferred you will receive an invoice from the local authority.
In the move in pack a standing order will be provided to pay the rent each month. This will either be direct to John Hilton if we manage your property or direct to the landlord if they manage your property themselves.
Rent is to be paid from one account only and by standing order. Individual or card payments are subject to fees; please refer to the tenant page on this website and your tenancy agreement for more information. Tenants can either set up a joint account or have a chosen tenant to pay the rent directly once collected from each tenant.
In this instance contact the office or landlord, make the payment of rent which has been collected and let the landlord or agent know which tenant/s have not paid. The agency or landlord will then contact the tenant who is late with the rent and their guarantor if required.
If you have any difficulties in paying your rent please contact the office or landlord immediately, it is better to inform the office than to ignore any calls. Once the landlord is aware of the situation an extension may be given or the guarantor will be contacted.
The tenancy agreement will indicate if the property is care of John Hilton or will contain the landlords address. Some properties we collect rent but do not manage any maintenance. The move in pack will contain the landlords contact details if John Hilton do not manage the maintenance.
On the tenancy start date an inventory and schedule of condition will either be emailed or a hard copy given. You have 48 hours to make any comments and we advise that additional pictures are taken by the tenant and emailed to the office so these can be kept on file.
For any maintenance issues during the tenancy please click here or contact John Hilton via email or telephone. For out of hours emergency maintenance please see our emergency numbers page (where we look after the management) or contact the landlord directly.
Details regarding check out will be sent to the tenants within the last few months of the tenancy explaining the process and offering advice on how to successfully vacate.