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The Harris will temporarily close from 5pm on Saturday 2 October.

Renting a private property

Hand holding a key

There are properties to rent in most parts of Preston. Rent varies according to the location and size of the property with most excluding Council Tax and the cost of utilities.

Visit our Housing and council tax benefits sections to see if you are eligible for financial support for your home.

Before renting a property we recommend reading Icon for pdf assured and assured shorthold tenancies [636.67KB].

Where to find properties to rent

Estate agents and lettings agents

These agencies advertise and let out properties on behalf of private landlords. A full list of estate agents and letting agencies can be found by visiting Yell - Estate Agents. The Friday edition of the Lancashire Evening Post also carries most property adverts and there are a number of websites that offer rented property listings from a variety of local agencies.

Individual Landlords

Some landlords contact Housing Advice with details of vacancies they have. We then inform interested applicants about these properties. Landlords also advertise in shop windows and the Lancashire Evening Post.

What will I need to rent a property?

References

Typically an agency or an individual landlord will require written references from an employer, or an agency professional who can provide some background information about you. It is worth getting these prepared in advance of finding a landlord willing to offer a property.

Deposits

Landlords and letting agencies often ask for a deposit as a condition of offering a tenancy. This is usually equal to one months rent. The deposit is held in case of damage or cleaning required at the end of the tenancy. All cash deposits now have to be placed by law by the landlord in one of three national schemes. Any disagreement about the amount of deposit returned can by dealt with by arbitration.

Failure to register deposits and or provide details about the registration in accordance with the legislation prevents the landlord from using certain eviction procedures and potentially entitles the tenant to make a court claim for three times the deposit paid.

For further information visit GOV.UK - Tenancy deposit protection.

Preston Bond Scheme

Housing Advice can, in some cases, help with offering a letter of guarantee instead of a cash bond - called Preston Bond Scheme. Many private landlords have accepted this arrangement and we have housed a number of clients in the private sector this way. If you need help with obtaining private rented housing please contact Housing Advice so we can tell you what help we can give you.

Advice on the tenancy?

If you don't understand the terms of a tenancy or are concerned about the property please contact Housing Advice for help.

Why rent a property privately?

Choice and availability

Compared to housing association property, private rented housing can be a lot quicker to obtain. There are no waiting lists or points systems to deal with and households are not necessarily restricted to choosing a particular size or type of housing, which is the case with housing association allocation rules.

Security

Typically, most landlords offer a 6 or 12 month assured short-hold tenancy. If no notice is served before the end of the fixed term, the tenancy continues month to month after the fixed term has ended. There is generally less security with an assured short hold tenancy than with housing association property.

Notice to quit

Tenancies have to be brought to an end in accordance with the law and we can advise landlords and tenants about the notice procedure.

For more information see Icon for pdf notice that you must leave - a brief guide for landlords and tenants [299.33KB].

Local Housing allowance and rents

Private rents are often higher than housing association rents, but, depending on income, Local Housing Allowance may be claimed to help pay the rent. Local Housing Allowance is paid to the tenant to pass on to the landlord in the majority of cases. The amount paid varies according to family size and income level.

Condition of property

If you are in a private rented property and you are concerned about the condition of the property, we can provide advice about what the landlords duties to repair and maintain are. In serious cases, the Housing Standards team visit problem properties and can take enforcement action to require landlords to complete essential work.

Contact Housing Advice

You can contact Housing Advice about a housing problem or enquiry by filling out the online form. 

Contact Housing Advice

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