BEFORE YOU SIGN ON THE DOTTED LINE…
Belvoir Lettings, in the current economic climate, as many as 1 of 5
homebuyers are choosing to rent rather than buy.
The country’s leading lettings specialist, offers those new to the
world of tenancy agreements the following advice before they sign on
the dotted line:-
► Confirm, in detail, which costs are included in the monthly
rental. For example, if bills are included, ask the landlord to
provide a list of which ones are covered.
► Find out if your letting agent is a member of an approved
association such as NALS.
► Check that any deposit paid will be held in an approved tenancy
► Ask to see gas (Corgi) and electricity (NICEIC) safety
certificates for the property.
► Ensure that a detailed inventory is provided by the management
► Ask the landlord or management company if they will be instructing
a Domestic Energy Assessor to issue the property with an Energy
Performance Certificate (EPC).
► Find out what repairs your landlord will be responsible for. By
law a landlord is responsible for structural repairs to the exterior
of the property. This includes; repairs to all water and gas pipes,
electric wiring, basins, sinks, baths, toilets and any fixed heaters
or water heaters.
► If you are moving into a house in multiple occupation HMO (i.e.
you share a toilet, bathroom or kitchen with people other than those
in your immediate family) check if your landlord has or requires a
local authority licence.
Mike Goddard, Chief Executive of Belvoir said:- “Many people
who have never considered renting before may be interested to know
that legislation introduced in recent years offers them more
protection than ever before.
There are some
golden rules when it comes to signing a tenancy agreement and we
suggest anyone looking to rent a property considers our advice and
asks the right questions up front.
If a potential landlord or management company tries to fob you off
or encourages you to sign on the dotted line without reading the
small print, our advice is to walk straight out of the door.
are many good management companies out there, such as Belvoir, who
will be more than happy to guide you through the rental process in
Don’t settle for second best; after all there are few things as
important as having a safe, secure and comfortable home to live in.”
Pupils pedal length of Africa in virtual bike race challenge
parents and teachers across England are getting on their bikes to
compete in a virtual race across Africa as part of the Bike It
project managed by sustainable transport charity Sustrans.
Around 80 schools are taking part in the first ever national Bike.
The race is a
virtual bike race that covers a 7,500 mile journey from Cairo to Cape Town
based on the route of the international Tour d'Afrique bicycle race
At the end of last term, pupils took part in 'Bike to School'
days and brushed up on their cycling skills for the warm-up stage
between London and Istanbul. The virtual race is now fully under way
and participating schools are cycling as much as possible to clock
up the miles needed to be 1st across the finish line in Cape Town.
The race is expected to take 4 weeks to complete from start to
finish, but with less than halfway to go the competition is really
starting to hot up. The winning school is expected to finish just
before the summer half term holiday in the week ending Friday, 23
May 2008. The national prize is £2,000 to be spent on bikes for the
winning school and the results will be announced in the week
commencing Monday, 2 June 2008. There will also be prizes for
Andy Casson, Sustrans' Bike It officer said:- "This race will
help young people get into the habit of riding to school regularly
and demonstrate to them and their parents the huge amount of
distance that can be covered collectively by bike. Even a few miles
of pedal power each day soon adds up and can make a significant
contribution to people's health and the environment."
The pupils are monitoring their progress on a giant map of Africa
and taking part in lessons based on the places they virtually travel
through. Some of the schools taking part are being sponsored so that
they can supply bicycles to schoolchildren and health workers in
The challenge is taking place in the following places:-
Bristol, Bath & North East Somerset, South Gloucestershire
Gateshead & South Tyneside
Luton, Bedford & St. Albans
Reigate & Banstead
The Bike It project is funded and supported by Cycling England, Bike
Hub, the cycle industry levy, the Big Lottery Fund's Wellbeing
Programme, Transport for London and partner local authorities.
Further information about Sustrans and Bike It, is available through