RENT DEPOSIT AND
RENT IN ADVANCE SCHEME
This leaflet aims to give you information about Tewkesbury Borough Councils Rent Deposit
and Rent in Advance Scheme (RD & RAS) for private tenants. It is not, however, intended
to be a guide to private letting and you are strongly advised to seek your own independent
legal advice before letting your property.
THE BENEFITS FOR LANDLORDS…………………
If you wish to rent out a property for a minimum of six months and are keen to manage it
yourself, we can, at no charge to you:
Offer FREE information and advice
Help you to find a suitable tenant
Inspect the property and complete an inventory
Offer you a Rent Deposit Certificate which will give you some protection against
damage to your property and rent arrears
Assist with ensuring Housing Benefit payments are made quickly
Arrange for Housing Benefit to be paid directly to you (optional)
Answer your queries on the rights and duties of landlords and tenants or refer you to
the appropriate agency.
WHY HAVE TEWKESBURY BOROUGH COUNCIL INTRODUCED THIS SCHEME?
The Council receives a large number of applications each year from people who wish to be
re-housed in Tewkesbury. Unfortunately, waiting lists can be very long. By working in
partnership with the private sector and the Rent Deposit and Rent In Advance Scheme it is
hoped the needs of both landlords and tenants will be met.
HOW DOES THE RENT DEPOSIT CERTIFICATE WORK?
Tewkesbury Borough Council will reimburse you (up to the equivalent of one months’ rent
or a maximum of £600, which ever is the less) if you make a verifiable claim against rent
loss or damage to your property. In return, we expect you not to ask the tenant to pay you a
deposit. If the cost of repairs to your property and/or rent arrears is more than the protection
offered under the Scheme, you will need to take legal action against your tenant in the
County Court to get the rest of the money.
WHAT DOES THE DEPOSIT COVER?
The Deposit covers:
Rent Arrears due to non-payment of rent. You must satisfy us that the arrears are
due and have not been paid. The Council’s decision is final.
Loss and Damage as a result of your tenant wilfully damaging property or stealing
items in the property where such loss is not covered by your insurance.
Any payment the Council makes is intended to cover the cost of repairs to the damaged
property. If an item cannot be repaired, or if it has been stolen, then we will make a
payment towards the reasonable replacement cost – reflecting the condition of the original
To avoid any misunderstandings or disputes, we will compile a full inventory with you before
the tenancy starts. This will list the contents of each room and contain a note on the
condition of each item. We will also make a note of the decorative condition of each room
and will take photographs.
THE DEPOSIT WILL NOT COVER:
Arrears due to late payments of Housing Benefit
Costs you incur as a result of the tenant not paying gas, electricity, telephone, water
rates, Council Tax, TV Licence, etc.
Ordinary wear and tear
The cost of repairing the mechanical breakdown of any installation which the landlord
is required by law to repair – for example: heating appliances, electric sockets,
Damage or theft by another resident
Damage or theft of items in another tenant’s flat
Damage or theft in the communal areas.
HOW LONG DOES THE RENT DEPOSIT LAST FOR?
The Deposit covers loss for the duration of the tenancy or until such time as the deposit is
paid to the landlord
HOW DO I CLAIM THE RENT GUARANTEE?
If you wish to make a claim against the Rent Deposit Certificate, you should complete a
‘Landlord’s Claim Form’ and return it within 14 days of the tenancy ending or the six month
period ending (whichever is the earlier) to:
Tewkesbury Rent Deposit & Rent in Advance Scheme
Tewkesbury Borough Council
Tewkesbury GL20 5TT
We will need to check the inventory and will visit the property to assess your claim. The
Council will then advise you of its decision within 10 days of receiving your fully documented
Please ensure you do not undertake any repairs or redecorating before a
representative of Tewkesbury Borough Council Housing Advice Team has viewed any
damage. If you do so the Council may not be able to guarantee to reimburse you for
the work carried out.
HOW DO I QUALIFY FOR THIS SCHEME?
To qualify for the Tewkesbury Rent Guarantee & Rent in Advance Scheme you must satisfy
the following conditions:
The property must be fit for habitation
You must offer a tenancy for at least 6 months
You must be willing to accept tenants who are receiving Housing Benefit
Prior to the tenancy starting you must sign the inventory and an Agreement with the
Scheme setting out the terms under which payments for rent, loss or damage will be
You must also agree to return to Tewkesbury Borough Council any money claimed
from the Scheme, if you recover it at a later date from your tenant, e.g. through legal
IS MY PROPERTY SUITABLE?
Before we accept any accommodation for the Scheme, we will inspect it to ensure that it
is in good decorative order and in reasonable repair. We will also need to agree an
inventory with you. Where there are items in need of repair, the work must be completed
to our satisfaction before the tenancy starts.
All fixtures and fittings must be safe and you will be required to provide current safety
certificates for gas installations, the electrical supply and the soft furnishings. There
should be heating in at least one room.
If your property is within a House of Multiple Occupation (HMO) it will be checked by
an Environmental Health Officer. We will only accept an HMO if it has good facilities and
complies with fire and means of escape regulations.
GAS INSTALLATIONS & YOUR RESPONSIBILITIES
By Law all work to gas appliances and fittings must be carried out by a CORGI
REGISTERED engineer. Any person who installs a gas appliance must leave
instructions for the occupier. It is illegal to use, or permit to be used, any gas appliance
that is suspected, or known, to be faulty.
As a landlord you have a duty to ensure that all gas appliances and associated pipe work
are maintained in a safe condition and checked for safety at least every 12 months by a
qualified engineer. Tewkesbury Borough Council will need to see the valid certificate
before we can accept your property and receive yearly certificates for the length of the
ELECTRICAL SAFETY CERTIFICATE
Tewkesbury Borough Council will need to see the valid certificate before we can accept
WHAT TYPE OF PROPERTIES IS THE SCHEME LOOKING FOR?
We will consider the following types of property:
All sizes of accommodation, from bedsits to family sized properties
Flats, maisonettes, bungalows and houses
Furnished, partly furnished and unfurnished.
There are certain restrictions on the type of property we will consider, which are the
The property must be vacant and available for letting – landlords who evict their
tenants in order to qualify for the scheme will not be accepted
You must prove ownership of the property
If the property is mortgaged or leasehold you must be permitted to sublet
There must be no mortgage arrears on the property
Your property insurance must not be invalidated by subletting
We will not consider properties owned by a landlord where successful Court
action has been taken by the Council because of harassment
The property must be located within the Tewkesbury Borough.
You will need building and household insurance on the property. The tenant will
normally arrange their own contents insurance to cover their personal belongings.
YOUR MORTGAGE COMPANY’S CONSENT
If your property is subject to a mortgage, you must inform the lender of your intention to
let the property, otherwise the terms of your mortgage may be breached. Most lenders
will give their permission for the property to be let but they may charge an administration
fee and increase the rate of interest. If they also provide the insurance, they may dictate
the type of tenant you can accept and the form of tenancy agreement you use.
WHAT ARE THE LANDLORDS’ RESPONSIBILITIES?
As a landlord you will be responsible for:
Insuring the building and your property
Repairing the structure and exterior of the property and the installations for the
supply of heat, hot water, gas, electricity and water and sanitary fixtures
Providing your tenant with a rent book or receipts on a regular basis when
payments are made
Some landlords ask for references from prospective tenants. You should not, however,
set unrealistic conditions, for example, a young person renting for the first time will not be
able to offer a previous landlord’s reference.
The Council accepts no responsibility for the conduct of your tenant.
WHO PAYS THE RENT?
The tenant is responsible for ensuring that the rent is paid. Most tenants taking part in
the Scheme will be entitled to claim Housing Benefit. It is optional whether or not the
Housing Benefit is paid directly to you or to your tenant.
Housing Benefit will only help with payments of rent and will not cover electricity,
telephone, gas, water rates, TV licence or Council Tax (tenants may be able to apply
for Council Tax Benefit.)
WHAT RENT WILL BE USED TO WORK OUT THE HOUSING BENEFIT?
We will ask you how much rent you wish to charge for the property. The rent payable
will be determined by the local Rent Officer, who will take into account the following
State of repair
Quality of any services provided
Ideally, the Rent Officer’s assessment must be made before the tenant accepts the
tenancy and moves in (complete form PTD1).
If the rent you wish to charge is above the Rent Officer’s Pre-Tenancy Determination
(Form PTD1), you will need to satisfy yourself that your tenant can make up the shortfall.
Tewkesbury Borough Council will not accept someone for the Scheme if we feel they will
not be able to make up the shortfall between Housing Benefit and the rent.
HOUSING BENEFIT PAYMENTS
Housing Benefit is paid to landlords every four weeks (in arrears) or to the tenant
At the end of the tenancy it is your responsibility to notify the Council and Rent Deposit
and Rent in Advance Scheme that your tenant has left. You should also let us know of
any other changes you think may affect the amount of benefit payable. If Housing
Benefit has been paid directly to you and an overpayment occurs, you may have to
ENDING THE TENANCY
The Council and the Rent Deposit and Rent in Advance Scheme should be notified
immediately if either party gives notice to terminate the tenancy.
If you wish your tenant to leave you must give them the required notice in the correct
form (usually 2 months written notice). If your tenant fails to leave after the Notice has
expired you must apply to the Court for a Possession Order. Tewkesbury Borough
Council accepts no responsibility for this.
Arrangements should be made for the Council to inspect the property two weeks prior to
the tenant leaving the property if the rent deposit guarantee is still in place