Make sure you're not duped by a dodgy landlord as a student tenant: Here are eight key rights that you should know about!
Your landlord can't just turn up
Any visits by your landlord or their agents must be agreed with at least 24 hours notice. The only exception is for emergencies that could affect the property or its contents such as floods.
You can't be booted out onto the street
Even though it's not your house you can't just be kicked out on the street. If your landlord wants you to leave they must follow strict rules and guidelines and must serve you with a notice to leave. The length of notice required will depend on your tenancy but two months is the most common.
You can't be left to freeze
Your landlord must provide a constant supply of hot water and central heating (if it was present in your property when the tenancy began). While minor problems such as a faulty radiator do not need to be fixed right away, a total lack of heating (in winter) or hot water is classed as an emergency and should be rectified as soon as possible.
You're not to blame for wear and tear
While you must take good care of the property and not cause any damage, at the same time you are not responsible for wear and tear and for any damage caused by your general day to day living. Your landlord can NOT take money from your deposit or ask you to pay to rectify such damage.
You must be safe
The landlord has a duty to make sure that the gas and electricity supplies to the property are safe and secure, as well as the necessary fire protection and prevention systems are in place. Exactly what the legal requirements are however will depend on the size of the property and the amount of people living there.
You don't have to make repairs
Your landlord is responsible for repairs to the building, not you, so speak them about any issues. Note that this doesn't extend to trivial matters like changing lightblubs.
HOWEVER you are responsible for any damage you - or anyone you invite into the property - cause and so may have to pay for any repairs carried out.
You can't be discriminated against
It's your ultimate right not to be discriminated against throughout your tenancy. This may include the way you are treated by your landlord or the terms of your agreement
However, discrimination in law is 'limited' to disability, gender reassignment, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, gender or sexual orientation.
That means that - unfortunately - you can be legally discriminated against just for being a student.
Your rent can't increase willy nilly
Last of all: Your landlord cannot just hike up the rent when they feel like it. Your tenancy agreement will specify when and how rent increases can come about, but they must not be more than once a year (without your agreement) and they must be fair and inline with the going rate for the area.