There are no restrictions on how much rent a landlord can charge for their property. The rent is a matter for agreement between the landlord and the tenant.
The rent can be paid weekly, monthly, annually or for some other period by cash, cheque or some other method. It is important the landlord and tenant are aware when the rent is due and how the payment will be made. If the payments are being made weekly then the landlord must provide a rent book and receipts.
The rent book should state:
- the landlord or agents name and address
- the amount of rent to be paid
- a summary of the basic rights that a tenant has
- address of the property and the tenants name
The rent on a property can be increased if both landlord and tenant agree. However there will be times when both parties are not in agreement, therefore the Housing (Scotland) Act 1988 lays down three specific circumstances in which a rent increase can be sought:
- within one year of the creation of the statutory assured tenancy, either the landlord or the tenant may propose new term's and also, if he wishes, an increase/decrease to the rent to reflect the new terms. A landlord should do so by serving an AT1 (L) and a tenant an AT1 (T)
- the landlord may propose a rent increase to take effect at any time during a statutory assured tenancy though not more often than once a year by serving a AT2 notice
- a tenant under a Short Assured Tenancy may use an AT4 form to apply to the rent assessment committee for a determination of market rent. The rent assessment committee may then change the rent.
Deposits/Tenancy Deposit Scheme
As a landlord it is acceptable to ask for a deposit from the tenant to cover any loss or damage to the property, unpaid bills or rent arrears. The amount that a landlord will normally ask for is the equivalent to one months' rent and it is a statutory requirement that the deposit does not exceed 2 months' rent in accordance with the Rent (Scotland) Act 1984. Every deposit taken should be lodged with an independent third party approved by the Scottish Government.
The Tenancy Deposit Scheme (Scotland) Regulations 2011 came into force in March 2011. The Scheme was introduced in response to concerns about large sums of money that are unfailry withheld from tenants deposits by some landlords and letting agents at the end of a tenancy.
The main objective of the Tenancy Deposit Scheme is to:
- deal with the problem of unfairly withheld deposits
- ensure that deposits are safeguarded fo rthe duration of the tenancy
- ensure that deposits are returned quickly and fairly, particularly where a disagrement over the return of the deposits arises
Landlords who are required to register with their local authority under the Anitsocial Behaviour etc (scotladn) Act 2004 have a legal obligation to comply with these regulations.
The three schemes that have been approved by the Scottish Ministers are:
- The Letting Protection Service Scotland
- SafeDeposit Scotland
- MyDeposit Scotland
Deposit Guarantee Scheme (DiGS)
We have developed a Deposit Guarantee Scheme (DiGS) which provides the guarantee of a rent deposit, payable to the landlord at the end of the tenancy if there is any loss of damage incurred to the property, enabling those unable to raise a deposit on their own to access the private sector. For further information you can contact the Rent Deposit Officer on the telephone numbers detailed at the bottom of this page.
At the start of a tenancy it is good practice for the landlord to confirm with the new tenant the furnishings and equipment supplied as part of the tenancy. This should include details of any faults, damage or disrepair of any equipment fixtures and fittings. It is recommended that the landlord and the tenant go over the inventory at the same time as signing the lease for the property. The tenant should be given a copy of the inventory and a note of what repairs are required and when the tenant should expect these to be completed.
At the end of the tenancy, the landlord and tenant should check the inventory together.