Private renting - advice for tenants

The greater the time and care you take choosing your prospective home and landlord, the more likely you will enjoy your tenancy.

  • Check your prospective landlord is registered.
  • If sharing a house with 3 or more non related people check if House in Multiple Occupation Licence is required and issued.
  • Members of Landlord Accreditation Scotland will be guided by the Scottish Core Standards. It's worth looking for an accredited landlord.
  • Ask your prospective landlord for a detailed inventory. Check this.
  • Keep dated photographs of any defects to the structure, decoration, fixtures or fittings.
  • Use our Housing Standards guide to evaluate the condition of the property you are to rent. Remember it’s your choice to live there or not!
  • Ask for a copy of your landlords’ property insurance.
  • Insure your own possessions and be insured for any damages you may cause to the landlords property and be charged for.
  • Check the fire safety labels on all soft furnishings.
  • Ask to see the most recent gas safety certificates if there are any gas appliances in the house. You can find out more about gas health and safety on the Health and Safety Executive website. You can also report properties which have not had an annual gas safety check.
  • Ensure the house has an Energy Performance Certificate and check if any low cost easy fit improvements are possible. Low fuel bills save you money.
  • Co-operate with your landlord.
  • Co-operate with your neighbours and in a flat with shared areas take your turn at close cleaning or other communal duties.
  • Be considerate to your neighbours, particularly with regard to late night or early morning noise.
  • Have a written copy of your lease. It is the duty of the landlord in every assured or short assured tenancy to draw up a document stating the terms of the tenancy and provide a copy, free of charge, to the tenant at the commencement of the tenancy.
  • Know who to report problems to. Have phone numbers, address and e-mail of your landlord or letting agent. Know how to make emergency out of hours contact.
  • Ask your landlord which Tenancy Deposit Scheme they will place any deposit with and ensure that provide you with details when this is done.
  • Is the water supply provided by Scottish Water? If not ask about how the landlord ensures it is a safe supply. Contact Environmental Health for further information on treatment of private water supplies.

Our Advice

The greater the time and care you take choosing your prospective home and landlord, the more likely you will enjoy your tenancy.

Further advice can be obtained from

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