• Maintenance

    • How do I work my burglar alarm? #

      To work your burglar alarm it is pretty simple. Firstly you will need to type in your alarm code which would have been provided to you by text at the start of your tenancy.

      If you cannot find this the office is only a phone call away and they will be able to assist you with this. By typing in your alarm code this will normally set your alarm if not you may need to click the full button on the alarm.

      Once this is set you will need to leave the property and just type in the code on your return to disarm. Some of the newer alarms may require you to have the front door on your property closed to set your alarm, but you will have plenty of time to leave the property and lock up without setting your alarm off

      Back to Top
    • How do I prevent condensation ? #

      Try to keep the inside temperature reasonably constant. Avoid drying clothes indoors. Ensure tumble dryers are properly vented or the condensate container is regularly emptied. Keep furniture away from walls. Do not turn off or disable extractor fans. Ensure extractor fans are well maintained and offer adequate airflow.

      These tips are just a guide that you could follow, if you have got mould appearing then we suggest you report it here, this will then be passed to the maintenance team to come and assess the problem and treat the mould. 

      Back to Top
    • What do i do if my fire alarm sounds? #

      If your fire alarm system sounds and you have checked that there is no fire you will need to follow these steps:

      1. Type in Alt 514.

      2. Press the button which shows ‘Silence Alarms’.

      3. Press the button which shows ‘Silence Buzzer’.

      4. Press the button which shows ‘Reset’.

      If alarms sound after resetting repeat steps 1, 2 and 3 then report it here and we will attend.

      If there is a fire call 999 and leave the property calmly following the designated fire escape route.

      Back to Top
    • My electrics have tripped – what do I do? #

      1. Go to the fuse box and ensure that all switches are to the very bottom, including the mains switch and the RCD Switch (these are the bigger switches).

      2. Put RCD switch to the top and mains switch to the top, these two should always stay up. If these do not stay up, please contact the office on 0113 274 6642. If these switches do not stay up there is a problem with the electrics to the property or the fuse box itself.

      3. Working from left to right put all of the smaller switches up to the very top, waiting around 10 seconds between each switch. If the item that tripped the electrics in the first place is still plugged in, it will cause the smaller switch to not stay up. You must locate this item and unplug from the wall and complete the above steps again.

      4. Each small switch should be labelled with an area/description – i.e. Ground Floor Sockets. This will show you which area the item is plugged into, to work out which appliance/plug in is that’s tripping the electrics you will need to turn off and unplug everything that is plugged in on that circuit.

      5. Once you have managed to keep all the switches up on the fuse board you can then start to plug each item back in (one at a time), this will show you which item is causing the electrics to trip.

      6. The item that has tripped the electrics will probably require the fuse changing. If it is an appliance that Pickards have supplied you, click here and we will arrange an electrician to attend and take a look.

      Back to Top
    • My shower is not draining correctly, how do I unblock the trap in my shower? How do i unblock a sink? #

      Usually, slow drainage or a total blockage in your bath or shower is caused by an accumulation of hair, soap and dirt in the pipe. You may be able to pick out whatever is causing the blockage, but make sure you wear protection on your hands, for example rubber gloves.

      If you are unable to get to the blockage that way, the next step would be a plunger.You should always try using a plunger first before resorting to bleach or other chemicals. This is because the act of plunging often results in being splashed by the water and could result in chemicals getting on your skin or clothing.

      To get the most out of your plunger you should run the rubber end under the hot tap for several minutes to soften the rubber. This will make the rubber more flexible and better able to generate the required suction to clear the pipe.

      Once plunged we would suggest you put some drain unblocker down there and leave it for 30 mins. Any big brand drain unblocker will do the trick. Once you have left it to work in the drain we would suggest you pour some boiling water preferably from the kettle.

      If, however, your drain is still blocked up, and you have attempted the steps above, you will need use our maintenance portal which is very easy to use – click here. This will then get forwarded to the maintenance team who will be able to assist further.

      Back to Top
    • Is replacing a light bulb my responsibility? #

      Replacing a light bulb is indeed your responsibility in most cases. We would always ask you to attempt to replace the bulbs yourself.

      In the case that the bulb is a strip light or has a protective casing over i.e in the bathroom then you can report it here and a member of our team will sort it. 

      This is also the case if your bulb is too high for you to reach and/or unsafe for you to be able to access but in that case we would ask that you supply us with the correct bulb needed.

      Back to Top
    • How do I unblock a toilet? #

      Drain cleaners are mostly for hair and grease clogs. The best way to unclog a toilet is with water and/or with a plunger, which you can buy from any hardware store such as Wilkinsons.

      Get a bucket of water and pour it into the toilet bowl. If this doesn’t work you will need a plunger on hand and you should be able to plunge the toilet until the water flushes away. 

      Back to Top
    • How do I clean the filter on my washing machine? #

      Turn off and unplug your washing machine. Find your washing machine filter – the filter will normally be in the bottom right corner on the outside of the washer. Remove the cover of your filter. Most covers can be removed by pulling it away from the machine. However, some washers come with childproof covers, which can be harder to remove.

      Once the cover is removed ensure that you have a bowl/bucket to hand and a lot of towels. Once you remove the filter any water that is in the machine will flood out of the filter hole, once you can grab the cover, turn it counter-clockwise until you can remove it completely. Take out your filter. 

      Once you have removed the cap to the filter, it will easily pull out of place. If it gets stuck, try to manipulate it by moving it around as much as you can. This should loosen up any lint or detergent that may be causing it to stick. Use a paper towel to remove any lint from the filter. Residue on the filter is caused by a build up of excess detergent mixed with lint. 

      Inspect the inside of the machine for excess lint. If there is lint in the drum of the washer use a paper towel to remove it or scrub it with a wet sponge. Once you are certain your filter is free from all residue, go ahead and put it back in the machine.

      Before resuming your regular washes, check to make sure that you have placed the filter and cover back on correctly by running it through a small cycle. Keep your washer empty while you run the cycle.

      If your washer is leaking, the filter is not on correctly. If your washing machine is then failing to work up to specification, you will need to report it here. This will then get forwarded to the maintenance team who will be able to assist.

      Back to Top
    • How do I unblock and/or empty my vacuum cleaner? #

      You will need to attempt to unblock the hose of your vacuum cleaner. To do this you need to disconnect the hose at both ends, the end that is attached to the vacuum itself and the end which may be attached to one of the utility attachments. Once this has been done, you will then be able to see if there is a blockage in the hose itself.

      If so you will need to then take something that will be able to clear it, for example: A straightened wire coat hanger or the handle of a mop or brush. Using these items you will be able to carefully unclog the hose of your vacuum.

      Once this has been completed you will then have to check if there is any blockages in the soil chamber. Look at the connection between your hose and chamber. Try to reach this connection spot and feel whether there is any form of clog. If you detect any blockage, clear as much as possible.

      Please also empty the soil chamber. To empty this there should be a release button, normally at the top of the chamber, which you will be able to click down and release.

      You can then empty the chamber into your house bin, but be careful as it can get a little bit messy, we would suggest you empty the chamber straight into your black wheelie bin outside your property. You can then connect the chamber back to the hoover, it should just sit into place and click back on.

      If all blockages have been removed, you will then be able to start reassembling the vacuum the way you took it apart. Once this step is complete, turn the hoover on and you will be able to check again whether the suction is up to standard and your hoover is up to spec.

      If your hoover is still not working and or the suction power is not strong enough, you can report it here. This will then get forwarded to the maintenance team who will be able to assist further.

      Back to Top
    • How do I work my heating? #

      In most of our properties there should be an electronic thermostat (either mounted to the wall or loose somewhere in the property) this device allows you to control the heating in your property.

      If you do not have a digital thermostat, you most likely have an older model. This is a simple turn dial with a temperature scale at the side. Further to these, you can also set timers and temperatures on your boiler manually.

      I would suggest contacting your property manager if you require any further information, they may even be able to provide a manual for the thermostatic devices.

      Back to Top
    • How long do repairs take? #

      We endeavour to respond to any maintenance requests as soon as we can – please familiarise yourself with our response guidelines:

      Priority One: Any repairs required in order to avoid a danger to health, risk to the safety of residents or serious damage to buildings or residents belongings. Response within 24 hours of reporting the problem. Example – gas leak, fire, flood, only toilet not working.

      Priority Two: Repairs or defects which materially affect the comfort or convenience of the residents. Within 5 working days of the report of the defect. Example – no hot water, no heating.

      Priority three : Reactive repairs not falling within the above categories. Within 28 days of report of the defect. Example –broken cupboard doors, vacuum cleaner not working, painting.

      Our office opening hours are Monday-Friday 9-5:30pm.

      Back to Top
    • How do I contact the maintenance team to report issues? #

      Any maintenance requests throughout your tenancy can be reported to using our maintenance portal which is very easy to use and here.

      Please be sure to speak to your fellow housemates to avoid maintenance requests being duplicated.

      In the event of an Urgent matter/ Priority one issue please call the office on 0113 274 6642 and use the portal for further advice.

      Back to Top
  • Professional

    • How do I work my burglar alarm? #

      To work your burglar alarm it is pretty simple. Firstly you will need to type in your alarm code which would have been provided to you by text at the start of your tenancy.

      If you cannot find this the office is only a phone call away and they will be able to assist you with this. By typing in your alarm code this will normally set your alarm if not you may need to click the full button on the alarm.

      Once this is set you will need to leave the property and just type in the code on your return to disarm. Some of the newer alarms may require you to have the front door on your property closed to set your alarm, but you will have plenty of time to leave the property and lock up without setting your alarm off

      Back to Top
    • How do I prevent condensation ? #

      Try to keep the inside temperature reasonably constant. Avoid drying clothes indoors. Ensure tumble dryers are properly vented or the condensate container is regularly emptied. Keep furniture away from walls. Do not turn off or disable extractor fans. Ensure extractor fans are well maintained and offer adequate airflow.

      These tips are just a guide that you could follow, if you have got mould appearing then we suggest you report it here, this will then be passed to the maintenance team to come and assess the problem and treat the mould. 

      Back to Top
    • What do i do if my fire alarm sounds? #

      If your fire alarm system sounds and you have checked that there is no fire you will need to follow these steps:

      1. Type in Alt 514.

      2. Press the button which shows ‘Silence Alarms’.

      3. Press the button which shows ‘Silence Buzzer’.

      4. Press the button which shows ‘Reset’.

      If alarms sound after resetting repeat steps 1, 2 and 3 then report it here and we will attend.

      If there is a fire call 999 and leave the property calmly following the designated fire escape route.

      Back to Top
    • My electrics have tripped – what do I do? #

      1. Go to the fuse box and ensure that all switches are to the very bottom, including the mains switch and the RCD Switch (these are the bigger switches).

      2. Put RCD switch to the top and mains switch to the top, these two should always stay up. If these do not stay up, please contact the office on 0113 274 6642. If these switches do not stay up there is a problem with the electrics to the property or the fuse box itself.

      3. Working from left to right put all of the smaller switches up to the very top, waiting around 10 seconds between each switch. If the item that tripped the electrics in the first place is still plugged in, it will cause the smaller switch to not stay up. You must locate this item and unplug from the wall and complete the above steps again.

      4. Each small switch should be labelled with an area/description – i.e. Ground Floor Sockets. This will show you which area the item is plugged into, to work out which appliance/plug in is that’s tripping the electrics you will need to turn off and unplug everything that is plugged in on that circuit.

      5. Once you have managed to keep all the switches up on the fuse board you can then start to plug each item back in (one at a time), this will show you which item is causing the electrics to trip.

      6. The item that has tripped the electrics will probably require the fuse changing. If it is an appliance that Pickards have supplied you, click here and we will arrange an electrician to attend and take a look.

      Back to Top
    • My shower is not draining correctly, how do I unblock the trap in my shower? How do i unblock a sink? #

      Usually, slow drainage or a total blockage in your bath or shower is caused by an accumulation of hair, soap and dirt in the pipe. You may be able to pick out whatever is causing the blockage, but make sure you wear protection on your hands, for example rubber gloves.

      If you are unable to get to the blockage that way, the next step would be a plunger.You should always try using a plunger first before resorting to bleach or other chemicals. This is because the act of plunging often results in being splashed by the water and could result in chemicals getting on your skin or clothing.

      To get the most out of your plunger you should run the rubber end under the hot tap for several minutes to soften the rubber. This will make the rubber more flexible and better able to generate the required suction to clear the pipe.

      Once plunged we would suggest you put some drain unblocker down there and leave it for 30 mins. Any big brand drain unblocker will do the trick. Once you have left it to work in the drain we would suggest you pour some boiling water preferably from the kettle.

      If, however, your drain is still blocked up, and you have attempted the steps above, you will need use our maintenance portal which is very easy to use – click here. This will then get forwarded to the maintenance team who will be able to assist further.

      Back to Top
    • Is replacing a light bulb my responsibility? #

      Replacing a light bulb is indeed your responsibility in most cases. We would always ask you to attempt to replace the bulbs yourself.

      In the case that the bulb is a strip light or has a protective casing over i.e in the bathroom then you can report it here and a member of our team will sort it. 

      This is also the case if your bulb is too high for you to reach and/or unsafe for you to be able to access but in that case we would ask that you supply us with the correct bulb needed.

      Back to Top
    • How do I unblock a toilet? #

      Drain cleaners are mostly for hair and grease clogs. The best way to unclog a toilet is with water and/or with a plunger, which you can buy from any hardware store such as Wilkinsons.

      Get a bucket of water and pour it into the toilet bowl. If this doesn’t work you will need a plunger on hand and you should be able to plunge the toilet until the water flushes away. 

      Back to Top
    • How do I clean the filter on my washing machine? #

      Turn off and unplug your washing machine. Find your washing machine filter – the filter will normally be in the bottom right corner on the outside of the washer. Remove the cover of your filter. Most covers can be removed by pulling it away from the machine. However, some washers come with childproof covers, which can be harder to remove.

      Once the cover is removed ensure that you have a bowl/bucket to hand and a lot of towels. Once you remove the filter any water that is in the machine will flood out of the filter hole, once you can grab the cover, turn it counter-clockwise until you can remove it completely. Take out your filter. 

      Once you have removed the cap to the filter, it will easily pull out of place. If it gets stuck, try to manipulate it by moving it around as much as you can. This should loosen up any lint or detergent that may be causing it to stick. Use a paper towel to remove any lint from the filter. Residue on the filter is caused by a build up of excess detergent mixed with lint. 

      Inspect the inside of the machine for excess lint. If there is lint in the drum of the washer use a paper towel to remove it or scrub it with a wet sponge. Once you are certain your filter is free from all residue, go ahead and put it back in the machine.

      Before resuming your regular washes, check to make sure that you have placed the filter and cover back on correctly by running it through a small cycle. Keep your washer empty while you run the cycle.

      If your washer is leaking, the filter is not on correctly. If your washing machine is then failing to work up to specification, you will need to report it here. This will then get forwarded to the maintenance team who will be able to assist.

      Back to Top
    • How do I unblock and/or empty my vacuum cleaner? #

      You will need to attempt to unblock the hose of your vacuum cleaner. To do this you need to disconnect the hose at both ends, the end that is attached to the vacuum itself and the end which may be attached to one of the utility attachments. Once this has been done, you will then be able to see if there is a blockage in the hose itself.

      If so you will need to then take something that will be able to clear it, for example: A straightened wire coat hanger or the handle of a mop or brush. Using these items you will be able to carefully unclog the hose of your vacuum.

      Once this has been completed you will then have to check if there is any blockages in the soil chamber. Look at the connection between your hose and chamber. Try to reach this connection spot and feel whether there is any form of clog. If you detect any blockage, clear as much as possible.

      Please also empty the soil chamber. To empty this there should be a release button, normally at the top of the chamber, which you will be able to click down and release.

      You can then empty the chamber into your house bin, but be careful as it can get a little bit messy, we would suggest you empty the chamber straight into your black wheelie bin outside your property. You can then connect the chamber back to the hoover, it should just sit into place and click back on.

      If all blockages have been removed, you will then be able to start reassembling the vacuum the way you took it apart. Once this step is complete, turn the hoover on and you will be able to check again whether the suction is up to standard and your hoover is up to spec.

      If your hoover is still not working and or the suction power is not strong enough, you can report it here. This will then get forwarded to the maintenance team who will be able to assist further.

      Back to Top
    • How do I work my heating? #

      In most of our properties there should be an electronic thermostat (either mounted to the wall or loose somewhere in the property) this device allows you to control the heating in your property.

      If you do not have a digital thermostat, you most likely have an older model. This is a simple turn dial with a temperature scale at the side. Further to these, you can also set timers and temperatures on your boiler manually.

      I would suggest contacting your property manager if you require any further information, they may even be able to provide a manual for the thermostatic devices.

      Back to Top
    • How long do repairs take? #

      We endeavour to respond to any maintenance requests as soon as we can – please familiarise yourself with our response guidelines:

      Priority One: Any repairs required in order to avoid a danger to health, risk to the safety of residents or serious damage to buildings or residents belongings. Response within 24 hours of reporting the problem. Example – gas leak, fire, flood, only toilet not working.

      Priority Two: Repairs or defects which materially affect the comfort or convenience of the residents. Within 5 working days of the report of the defect. Example – no hot water, no heating.

      Priority three : Reactive repairs not falling within the above categories. Within 28 days of report of the defect. Example –broken cupboard doors, vacuum cleaner not working, painting.

      Our office opening hours are Monday-Friday 9-5:30pm.

      Back to Top
    • How do I contact the maintenance team to report issues? #

      Any maintenance requests throughout your tenancy can be reported to using our maintenance portal which is very easy to use and here.

      Please be sure to speak to your fellow housemates to avoid maintenance requests being duplicated.

      In the event of an Urgent matter/ Priority one issue please call the office on 0113 274 6642 and use the portal for further advice.

      Back to Top
    • How long do repairs take? #

      We endeavour to respond to any maintenance requests as soon as we can – please familiarise yourself with our response guidelines:

      Priority One: Any repairs required in order to avoid a danger to health, risk to the safety of residents or serious damage to buildings or residents belongings. Response within 24 hours of reporting the problem. Example – gas leak, fire, flood, only toilet not working.

      Priority Two: Repairs or defects which materially affect the comfort or convenience of the residents. Within 5 working days of the report of the defect. Example – no hot water, no heating.

      Priority three: Reactive repairs not falling within the above categories. Within 28 days of report of the defect. Example –broken cupboard doors, vacuum cleaner not working, painting.

      Our office opening hours are Monday-Friday 9-5:30pm.

      Back to Top
    • What do I do with post that is addressed to someone not living at the property? #

      You can simply: Cross out the address but not the person’s name. Write “Not known at this address, please return to sender”. Pop it in the post box or hand it over to the staff at the nearest Post Office and let Royal Mail return it to the sender.

      Unless the post is addressed to us please do not bring this to our office.

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    • Are my belongings insured in my professional property or do I need to buy insurance? #

      As with any new home we do recommend you purchase some contents insurance to cover your possessions, we insure the building. You may also want to look into accidental damage/tenants liability cover to be included within the policy, so that in the event of carpets being stained, etc, you will be able to pay an excess rather than the full cost of replacement.

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    • What are the terms and conditions of my tenancy? #

      There are many Terms & Conditions that support and sets out your tenancy agreement and rental payment schedule. It is encouraged that you read through all documentation thoroughly before committing.

      If you have any queries you can speak to us on 0113 274 6642, or seek additional advices from other third party representatives, solicitor, student union, parent, guarantor.

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    • Can I supply my own furniture? #

      We understand that you may want to bring personal items of furniture with you to make your stay a little more comfortable, however, we do require that any items of furniture brought into the property should meet current fire safety regulations.

      Please make us aware/ ask for permission if you are looking to bring in multiple or larger items, as we need to make sure that there is still sufficient safe space within the property for you and any housemates/ guests.

      You can write to us here at [email protected].

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    • Are your professional properties furnished? #

      Professional properties can be furnished, part furnished or unfurnished and are advertised accordingly.

      If you have seen a property advertised that is unfurnished and would be interested in taking the property on as furnished, please do speak to a member of our team on 0113 274 6642.

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    • Will my accommodation be subject to inspections? #

      Inspections will occur periodically throughout your tenancy and are in place so that we, as a landlord, can inspect the property for any maintenance issues that may arise.

      If an inspection is going to be taking place, tenants will be given adequate notice so that they are aware we are attending.

      They are for the benefit of both tenant and landlord and help to maintain the quality of the property.

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    • How do I make a formal complaint? #

      If you are unhappy with the service in which you have received we would be pleased to hear your feedback and understand and work through your concerns.

      Please refer to our full complaints procedure for further help and guidance here.

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    • What happens if I lose my key? #

      New keys can be obtained upon request. If keys have been lost that would identify the property, it may be necessary for locks to be changed and any associated entry fobs to be recoded. Our reasonable costs will be charged to you.

      You are responsible for the safe keeping of your key at all times and we will try our best to help you if lost.

      Unfortunately, alternative accommodation costs will not be honoured by us if you do have to stay elsewhere due to a lost key.

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    • What happens if I get locked out of my professional property? #

      If you have inadvertently locked yourself out of the property, during office hours, we could hopefully arrange access to your property free of charge, depending on the location of the property and availability of our staff within the area. You will need to confirm your identity.

      You could also borrow a key collected from our office during office hours, with a deposit payment taken, refunded when the key is returned. A charge would be incurred to gain access if it it during out of office hours.

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    • What should I do if I don’t want the furniture you provide or would like something removing? #

      The property and its contents are let as seen, unless prior agreement or ‘special requests’ have been made for changes in furniture.

      Any requests you have for any furniture removal must be reported here.

      Where we can, and subject to the items not becoming damaged or dismantled and being unable to be rebuilt effectively elsewhere, we will book in a suitable date for the removal of the items. A charge may be incurred depending on the request.

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    • Can I decorate my room? #

      We would prefer to undertake any required re-decoration works ourselves. If you would like to request to make any cosmetic changes to the property, always seek the landlords permission first, in writing, as it may affect your deposit return at the end of your tenancy.

      If you feel that there are significant decorating needs within your property, please send any requests here.

      Whilst posters and wall hangings are usually permitted, please refrain from using blu tac as this can stain, and multiple / excessive nail use would incur a charge.

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    • Do you allow smoking? #

      All of our properties are non-smoking – Please refrain from smoking in any room of the property including bedrooms and all communal areas.

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    • Do you allow pets in professional properties? #

      This depends on the type of property. A lot of our professional properties are apartments and have shared/communal access and would therefore be unsuitable for certain types of pets.

      If you are interested in one of our properties, but are keen to have a pet, please enquire with a member of the team.

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    • What is an EICR (5 year electrical) Report? #

      There is now a legal onus on all landlords to have an electrical installation condition report in place on all rented accommodation.

      These are renewed every 5 years and any remedial required works and repairs will be communicated to you at the time if required.

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    • What is a gas safety certificate? #

      A landlord’s gas safety certificate, also referred to as the landlord’s gas safety record, is required by law to be held for all rental accommodation in the UK where there are gas appliances present.

      It involves a gas safe registered engineer inspecting your gas appliances to ensure they are safe and working correctly. These are renewed every 12 months.

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    • What is a HMO license? #

      A HMO (House in Multiple Occupation) Licence is required if the property is rented to five or more unrelated people who form more than one household. Tenants share amenities and facilities within the property such as kitchens, bathrooms and all communal areas.

      This mainly applies to larger student properties, however, even if your property is smaller and rented to fewer people, a licence may still be required.

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    • What is an EPC? #

      An Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) measures the energy efficiency of a property on a scale of A-G. Energy Performance Certificates were introduced in England and Wales in 2007 and are a legal requirement for a building to be sold, let or constructed.

      Once obtained, an EPC is valid for 10 years. It gives you an idea of how expensive a property will be to run in terms of gas and electric bills.

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    • What is the TDS? #

      Tenancy deposit protection applies to all deposits for Assured Shorthold Tenancies. By law, a landlord or agent who receives a deposit for such a tenancy must protect the deposit. There are several Government Approved Schemes – we have chosen the TDS (Tenancy Deposit Scheme), to protect our tenants deposits.

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    • What is a section 21 for a working professional? #

      This is a standard legal notice that a landlord must serve you to start the process to end your assured shorthold tenancy.

      If you are in a fixed term contract you may be served notice to leave, six months before the end of your tenancy if the landlord requires possession of the property.

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    • How do I arrange my utility bills for my professional property? #

      It is important to remember that you are responsible for payment of all bills from the start date, up until the agreed end date of your tenancy.

      Initially you will need to establish who already supplies the energy to the property. If you are uncertain, there are various companies that can assist. Please call us on 0113 274 6642 for further assistance if needed. You can continue to set up the utility accounts in your name with the same supplier, or alternatively you could contact a comparison site to find out the best tariff/ deal.

      This can work for broadband/ internet providers in the area also. You will also need to contact Yorkshire Water and the local Council for your area (either Leeds City Council or Calderdale Council) to inform them of your tenancy starting.

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    • Do I need a TV licence for my professional property? #

      A TV License is required as per the Terms and Conditions of the TV Licensing website https://www.tvlicensing.co.uk/

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    • What happens if I fall into arrears as a working professional? #

      If you fall into arrears, you will be contacted by us via text, call or email. If you are struggling to make payment, we would encourage you to speak with your local council and the Citizens Advice Bureau to seek advice on any relevant Hardship Funds that are available to you.

      We can also provide you with various links to help. We can then look to put a suitable payment plan in place. If a positive resolve is not reached or an agreed payment plan is not adhered to, if you have a guarantor in place we will seek payment from them.

      If there is no guarantor provided or no positive resolve reached, and our communications have been exhausted, we will look to seek further assistance to recover the debt through legal action.

      Certainly this is something that we wish to avoid, therefore communicating with us is essential.

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    • How do I pay my rent? #

      You can pay your rent by credit/debit card or set up a direct debit here.

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    • Can my parents or a third party pay my rent ? #

      Parents, guarantors and other third parties are able to pay your rent on your behalf. Unless you have given consent, we will not be able to share any other details surrounding your tenancy agreement with them.

      If the third party chooses to regularly pay your rent, and would like to pay by Direct Debit, they will need to set up a direct debit from their own chosen account.

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    • How do I set a Direct Debit up? #

      We have a dedicated webpage here for setting up a direct debit Direct debit payments are requested from your nominated bank account on your rent due dates, as per your rent payment schedule.

      Rents will be requested on the Alternative Payment Schedule unless advised otherwise.

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    • What happens if my Direct Debit fails? #

      If your Direct Debit fails, you will be notified by us via text or email. This will show information as to why the Direct Debit has failed. In some cases, there may be a charge for a failed payment.

      You may also be contacted by Go Cardless to advise of any failed direct debits as this is the platform we use to collect our direct debit payments.

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    • What is a Direct Debit? #

      A Direct Debit is when you give permission to us to collect your rent, from your nominated bank account on an agreed date. This date normally coincides with the start date of your tenancy.

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    • How do I get my deposit back? #

      Your deposit is returned once your tenancy has ended, keys have been returned and after a full ‘Check Out’ inspection has taken place.

      We aim to send you a detailed breakdown of the deposit, supporting any deductions, within 10 days after the tenancy has ended, which would usually be emailed to you/ your lead tenant. The deposit balance will be returned to you/ your lead tenant by BACS to your nominated bank account, which is usually processed within a further 5-10 days.

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    • How much is my deposit for my professional property? #

      The total deposit amount depends on the rent of the property. Deposits are charged at 5 weeks rent, rounded down to the nearest £5, as the amount cannot legally exceed the 5 week amount.

      The calculation for working this out is as follows: Rent PCM X 12 = Rent PA Rent PA / 52 = Rent PW Rent PW X 5 = Deposit (Rounded down to nearest £5) PCM – Per Calendar Month PA – Per Annum (yearly) PW – Per Week Using the above calculation, this would therefor mean that if the rent was £500.00PCM, the deposit would be £575.00.

      More information here.

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    • What happens if we want a new tenant to move in? #

      In all cases the property must not exceed the allowed number of non-related persons in the residence. If you would like a new tenant to replace an existing tenant in the property we can carry out a process called an assignment.

      There is a small administration charge for this. Under a joint tenancy agreement, before anyone can be assigned to the tenancy, mutual agreement from all other remaining housemates must be obtained.

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    • What happens if I leave my professional property before the end of my tenancy agreement? #

      You will still be liable for the property until the initial contract period has come to an end. You can, however, look at the possibility of someone taking over your tenancy, freeing you from its obligation. This process is called an assignment.

      Similarly, if it is agreed that the property can be re-advertised, we can also look at releasing you early from your contract, subject to a new tenant being found.

      The contract would still be in place until any new tenant has collected their keys and, by doing so, confirmed their residence in the property.

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    • What happens when I move into my professional property? #

      We will arrange a convenient check in appointment with you to hand over your keys and walk you through the property showing you the location of your fuse box and boiler for example.

      You will have 7 days to check and make any amendments to the Checkin Inventory and can refer any additional maintenance queries here.

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    • When can I move into my professional property? #

      You can move in from the start date of your tenancy agreement, subject to all paperwork being completed and all necessary payments being made. A time and date will be arranged with you to arrange key collection and check in.

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    • Can I make changes to the inventory? #

      You can’t change the notes already made on the inventory but you can add to them. The Inventory report is shared with you after check in and there is a 7 day window after you pick up your keys in which you can add comments and any additional photographs.

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    • What is the purpose of an inventory & how does it work? #

      An inventory is a formal record of the condition of the property at the time of check in. It may include a detailed list of furniture, along with commentary on the fixtures and fittings, decorations, carpets and standard of cleanliness. The same document is produced on check out and comparison of the two reports forms the basis of the deposit return

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    • When can I collect my keys for my professional property? #

      Once satisfactory referencing has been received, contracts signed and all requested payments made, we can release your keys to you at a pre-booked check-in appointment.

      A move in date will have already been agreed prior to the contracts being signed and a meeting time on the day confirmed once the signed contracts are received.

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    • What happens after I have signed for a professional property? #

      Once you have signed the documents sent electronically the property will now be your new home. We will be in touch in regards to the next steps, however, in the first instance you will be asked to make payment of a deposit and the first month’s rent for the property less your holding fee.

      The Right to Rent scheme requires landlords to check that all tenants who occupy their properties have legal status to live in the UK. This means that before you can rent a home in England, a landlord or letting agent must undertake passport and immigration checks prior to letting out the property.

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    • Is there a cooling off period AST? #

      There is no ‘cooling off’ period for tenancies. You will usually be liable for rent from the day the tenancy starts, even if you aren’t living in the property.

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    • What is a periodic tenancy for professional properties? #

      If after your initial fixed term contract you are happy in the property and would like to stay there for a little longer. So long as there are no concerns surrounding your tenancy, your contract will become a periodic tenancy agreement, or a rolling month by month contract.

      This means that if you decide to leave after the fixed term you will just need to provide us with one months notice to leave. Under current legislation we are required to provide you with a minimum of six months notice if we are looking to seek possession of the property.

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    • Why do I need a guarantor for professional properties? #

      It is common for a landlord to ask for a guarantor to ensure a tenant will not default on rent or property damages.

      Under normal circumstances we do not ask for a guarantor for our professional working tenants, unless perhaps at application stage, a tenant would fail referencing.

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    • What is a Guarantor? #

      A guarantor is someone who agrees to pay your rent if you don’t pay it, for example a parent or close relative. If you don’t pay your landlord what you owe them, they can ask your guarantor to pay instead. The agreement sets out the guarantor’s legal obligations.

      If you have signed a joint tenancy agreement the Guarantor is responsible for your share of the joint rent, whereas, all joint tenants are responsible for all rents due on the tenancy agreement.

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    • What is a joint contract? #

      A joint contract means that each person is equally responsible and liable for the rent and the property as a whole, including any associated damages that may occur.

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    • What is an Assured Shorthold Tenancy agreement for professional properties? #

      This is the most common type of tenancy if you rent from a private landlord or letting agency. They are usually a fixed term of 6 or 12 months.

      After the initial fixed period, the tenancy could be seen to go into a periodic or rolling month by month tenancy. This is the legally binding document you would sign when signing up for a property.

      Find more information here.

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    • What if I have a CCJ or bad credit rating as a working professional? #

      We use a third party to reference our professional working applicants. If you do have bad credit or CCJ’s please be upfront and let us know, as failure to disclose this information will lead to your application and referencing failing.

      If your referencing does come back as failed, we can discuss this on a case by case basis with the landlord and, if appropriate, can offer alternative solutions such as a guarantor or advanced rent payments.  

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    • Are there any admin fees when I sign up for a professional property? #

      As of 1st June 2019, most fee’s for any new tenancies were banned. If you sign up for a property there will be no administration charges applied.

      You will, however, be asked to pay a holding deposit (equating to 1 weeks rent) to secure the property. This amount is then subtracted from your first months’ rent when taking up occupation, after satisfactory referencing and signed contracts have been received.

      More information on what you can be charged during a tenancy can be found here.

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    • What is the application process? #

      Call us on 0113 274 6642 and we can check if the property you are interested in is still available. The initial stage we will talk you through the application process, the referencing criteria and general information about the tenancy/ property.

      Once all parties are satisfied to proceed, you will be asked to pay a holding deposit payment (equivalent to 1 weeks rent) which will cease all marketing of the property. You will then complete a third party referencing questionnaire to start the referencing process with Rent4sure.

      Once satisfactory referencing is received, contracts will be drawn up and sent to each tenant to sign electronically. A checkin time and date will be booked in once complete.

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    • How many properties can I view? #

      We would always ask that you initially view any properties of interest virtually using the video tour links on each advertisement. This will then narrow down your search to allow you to view the property you have chosen in person if needed.

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    • Do I meet you at the property or the Pickard Properties office? #

      You will always meet a member of our team at the property that you have requested to view at a pre arranged time. We will always follow any government guidance and company guidelines provided to us at the time of your viewing.

      We may ask that you also follow this guidance provided taking any appropriate safety measures needed. You will be contacted ahead of your appointment to confirm the details of the viewing.

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    • Do you offer weekend and evening viewings? #

      We try to accommodate most viewings during the normal working week but during peak times or under special circumstances we may be able to show properties during the evenings or on a weekend.

      You can always view the property using the video tours provided on the individual property adverts from the comfort of your own home.

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    • How do I book a viewing? #

      You can view the virtual tours available on our website, from the comfort of your own home. If you require a viewing in person at the property or would like more information, click on the ‘arrange a viewing’ link found on the individual property adverts or if it is a general letting enquiry you can use the contact us form on the contact us page.

      You can also call us on 0113 274 6642, or pop into the office to see us.

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    • How do I find the right professional accommodation? #

      Finding the right accommodation will start with who you want to live with and where you all want to live. Then you can start to decide on choosing the right landlord.

      We now have video tours available for the majority of our properties, making it easier for you to narrow down your choice, before a viewing at the property even needs to take place. Virtual tours keeps down the carbon footprint down too.

      See the properties we have available here and once you have come across something you like, just get in touch by sending us an enquiry or call us on 0113 274 6642 and we can talk you through the next steps.

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    • Where should I live after University? #

      After you have finished your studies, you may want to stay in Leeds longer, whether that is for further education or career and work opportunities. Depending on your budget, there are a few options available for you.

      You could opt for a Professional House share. Financially, these tend to be the most affordable option, with rents being fully inclusive of bills. Socially, it gives you the opportunity to meet new people.

      If living with others is not preferred, you could opt to live in a self contained apartment/ house. This option will cost you a bit more, especially if living alone as bills are not included, however it gives you complete freedom of the property.

      Finally, you could move in with already established friends. Make sure the house or apartment is covered by an HMO (House in Multiple Occupation) if there are 3 or more of you. This could be considered having the best of both worlds, as the property would be made more affordable by sharing the rent and bill costs, whilst also having your mates around for company.

      Start your search with us here.

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    • Where is the best place to live if I am a working professional? #

      This would depend on your individual circumstances. Whether you are more interested in the hustle and bustle of the city centre, or would prefer the more peaceful surroundings of Far Headingley, there are options for everyone in Leeds.

      If you are a football fan, you may want to consider South West Leeds to be in walking distance of Elland Road, or if Rugby or Cricket are more your style, Headingley / Burley are within walking distance of the Emerald Headingley Stadium.

      Living in the North East of Leeds would place you in walking distance of the famous Roundhay park, with its long nature walks and various concerts all year round. White rose shopping centre is located to the South West of Leeds, with Morley a short drive away from it.

      On the outskirts of the city, Horsforth, Cookridge and Rawdon will put you in between Leeds/Bradford airport and the city centre.

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  • Student

    • How do I work my burglar alarm? #

      To work your burglar alarm it is pretty simple. Firstly you will need to type in your alarm code which would have been provided to you by text at the start of your tenancy.

      If you cannot find this the office is only a phone call away and they will be able to assist you with this. By typing in your alarm code this will normally set your alarm if not you may need to click the full button on the alarm.

      Once this is set you will need to leave the property and just type in the code on your return to disarm. Some of the newer alarms may require you to have the front door on your property closed to set your alarm, but you will have plenty of time to leave the property and lock up without setting your alarm off

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    • How do I prevent condensation ? #

      Try to keep the inside temperature reasonably constant. Avoid drying clothes indoors. Ensure tumble dryers are properly vented or the condensate container is regularly emptied. Keep furniture away from walls. Do not turn off or disable extractor fans. Ensure extractor fans are well maintained and offer adequate airflow.

      These tips are just a guide that you could follow, if you have got mould appearing then we suggest you report it here, this will then be passed to the maintenance team to come and assess the problem and treat the mould. 

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    • What do i do if my fire alarm sounds? #

      If your fire alarm system sounds and you have checked that there is no fire you will need to follow these steps:

      1. Type in Alt 514.

      2. Press the button which shows ‘Silence Alarms’.

      3. Press the button which shows ‘Silence Buzzer’.

      4. Press the button which shows ‘Reset’.

      If alarms sound after resetting repeat steps 1, 2 and 3 then report it here and we will attend.

      If there is a fire call 999 and leave the property calmly following the designated fire escape route.

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    • My electrics have tripped – what do I do? #

      1. Go to the fuse box and ensure that all switches are to the very bottom, including the mains switch and the RCD Switch (these are the bigger switches).

      2. Put RCD switch to the top and mains switch to the top, these two should always stay up. If these do not stay up, please contact the office on 0113 274 6642. If these switches do not stay up there is a problem with the electrics to the property or the fuse box itself.

      3. Working from left to right put all of the smaller switches up to the very top, waiting around 10 seconds between each switch. If the item that tripped the electrics in the first place is still plugged in, it will cause the smaller switch to not stay up. You must locate this item and unplug from the wall and complete the above steps again.

      4. Each small switch should be labelled with an area/description – i.e. Ground Floor Sockets. This will show you which area the item is plugged into, to work out which appliance/plug in is that’s tripping the electrics you will need to turn off and unplug everything that is plugged in on that circuit.

      5. Once you have managed to keep all the switches up on the fuse board you can then start to plug each item back in (one at a time), this will show you which item is causing the electrics to trip.

      6. The item that has tripped the electrics will probably require the fuse changing. If it is an appliance that Pickards have supplied you, click here and we will arrange an electrician to attend and take a look.

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    • My shower is not draining correctly, how do I unblock the trap in my shower? How do i unblock a sink? #

      Usually, slow drainage or a total blockage in your bath or shower is caused by an accumulation of hair, soap and dirt in the pipe. You may be able to pick out whatever is causing the blockage, but make sure you wear protection on your hands, for example rubber gloves.

      If you are unable to get to the blockage that way, the next step would be a plunger.You should always try using a plunger first before resorting to bleach or other chemicals. This is because the act of plunging often results in being splashed by the water and could result in chemicals getting on your skin or clothing.

      To get the most out of your plunger you should run the rubber end under the hot tap for several minutes to soften the rubber. This will make the rubber more flexible and better able to generate the required suction to clear the pipe.

      Once plunged we would suggest you put some drain unblocker down there and leave it for 30 mins. Any big brand drain unblocker will do the trick. Once you have left it to work in the drain we would suggest you pour some boiling water preferably from the kettle.

      If, however, your drain is still blocked up, and you have attempted the steps above, you will need use our maintenance portal which is very easy to use – click here. This will then get forwarded to the maintenance team who will be able to assist further.

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    • Is replacing a light bulb my responsibility? #

      Replacing a light bulb is indeed your responsibility in most cases. We would always ask you to attempt to replace the bulbs yourself.

      In the case that the bulb is a strip light or has a protective casing over i.e in the bathroom then you can report it here and a member of our team will sort it. 

      This is also the case if your bulb is too high for you to reach and/or unsafe for you to be able to access but in that case we would ask that you supply us with the correct bulb needed.

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    • How do I unblock a toilet? #

      Drain cleaners are mostly for hair and grease clogs. The best way to unclog a toilet is with water and/or with a plunger, which you can buy from any hardware store such as Wilkinsons.

      Get a bucket of water and pour it into the toilet bowl. If this doesn’t work you will need a plunger on hand and you should be able to plunge the toilet until the water flushes away. 

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    • How do I clean the filter on my washing machine? #

      Turn off and unplug your washing machine. Find your washing machine filter – the filter will normally be in the bottom right corner on the outside of the washer. Remove the cover of your filter. Most covers can be removed by pulling it away from the machine. However, some washers come with childproof covers, which can be harder to remove.

      Once the cover is removed ensure that you have a bowl/bucket to hand and a lot of towels. Once you remove the filter any water that is in the machine will flood out of the filter hole, once you can grab the cover, turn it counter-clockwise until you can remove it completely. Take out your filter. 

      Once you have removed the cap to the filter, it will easily pull out of place. If it gets stuck, try to manipulate it by moving it around as much as you can. This should loosen up any lint or detergent that may be causing it to stick. Use a paper towel to remove any lint from the filter. Residue on the filter is caused by a build up of excess detergent mixed with lint. 

      Inspect the inside of the machine for excess lint. If there is lint in the drum of the washer use a paper towel to remove it or scrub it with a wet sponge. Once you are certain your filter is free from all residue, go ahead and put it back in the machine.

      Before resuming your regular washes, check to make sure that you have placed the filter and cover back on correctly by running it through a small cycle. Keep your washer empty while you run the cycle.

      If your washer is leaking, the filter is not on correctly. If your washing machine is then failing to work up to specification, you will need to report it here. This will then get forwarded to the maintenance team who will be able to assist.

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    • How do I unblock and/or empty my vacuum cleaner? #

      You will need to attempt to unblock the hose of your vacuum cleaner. To do this you need to disconnect the hose at both ends, the end that is attached to the vacuum itself and the end which may be attached to one of the utility attachments. Once this has been done, you will then be able to see if there is a blockage in the hose itself.

      If so you will need to then take something that will be able to clear it, for example: A straightened wire coat hanger or the handle of a mop or brush. Using these items you will be able to carefully unclog the hose of your vacuum.

      Once this has been completed you will then have to check if there is any blockages in the soil chamber. Look at the connection between your hose and chamber. Try to reach this connection spot and feel whether there is any form of clog. If you detect any blockage, clear as much as possible.

      Please also empty the soil chamber. To empty this there should be a release button, normally at the top of the chamber, which you will be able to click down and release.

      You can then empty the chamber into your house bin, but be careful as it can get a little bit messy, we would suggest you empty the chamber straight into your black wheelie bin outside your property. You can then connect the chamber back to the hoover, it should just sit into place and click back on.

      If all blockages have been removed, you will then be able to start reassembling the vacuum the way you took it apart. Once this step is complete, turn the hoover on and you will be able to check again whether the suction is up to standard and your hoover is up to spec.

      If your hoover is still not working and or the suction power is not strong enough, you can report it here. This will then get forwarded to the maintenance team who will be able to assist further.

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    • How do I work my heating? #

      In most of our properties there should be an electronic thermostat (either mounted to the wall or loose somewhere in the property) this device allows you to control the heating in your property.

      If you do not have a digital thermostat, you most likely have an older model. This is a simple turn dial with a temperature scale at the side. Further to these, you can also set timers and temperatures on your boiler manually.

      I would suggest contacting your property manager if you require any further information, they may even be able to provide a manual for the thermostatic devices.

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    • How long do repairs take? #

      We endeavour to respond to any maintenance requests as soon as we can – please familiarise yourself with our response guidelines:

      Priority One: Any repairs required in order to avoid a danger to health, risk to the safety of residents or serious damage to buildings or residents belongings. Response within 24 hours of reporting the problem. Example – gas leak, fire, flood, only toilet not working.

      Priority Two: Repairs or defects which materially affect the comfort or convenience of the residents. Within 5 working days of the report of the defect. Example – no hot water, no heating.

      Priority three : Reactive repairs not falling within the above categories. Within 28 days of report of the defect. Example –broken cupboard doors, vacuum cleaner not working, painting.

      Our office opening hours are Monday-Friday 9-5:30pm.

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    • How do I contact the maintenance team to report issues? #

      Any maintenance requests throughout your tenancy can be reported to using our maintenance portal which is very easy to use and here.

      Please be sure to speak to your fellow housemates to avoid maintenance requests being duplicated.

      In the event of an Urgent matter/ Priority one issue please call the office on 0113 274 6642 and use the portal for further advice.

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    • How long do repairs take? #

      We endeavour to respond to any maintenance requests as soon as we can – please familiarise yourself with our response guidelines:

      Priority One: Any repairs required in order to avoid a danger to health, risk to the safety of residents or serious damage to buildings or residents belongings. Response within 24 hours of reporting the problem. Example – gas leak, fire, flood, only toilet not working.

      Priority Two: Repairs or defects which materially affect the comfort or convenience of the residents. Within 5 working days of the report of the defect. Example – no hot water, no heating.

      Priority three: Reactive repairs not falling within the above categories. Within 28 days of report of the defect. Example –broken cupboard doors, vacuum cleaner not working, painting.

      Our office opening hours are Monday-Friday 9-5:30pm.

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    • What do I do with post that is addressed to someone not living at the property? #

      You can simply: Cross out the address but not the person’s name. Write “Not known at this address, please return to sender”. Pop it in the post box or hand it over to the staff at the nearest Post Office and let Royal Mail return it to the sender.

      Unless the post is addressed to us please do not bring this to our office.

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    • Are my belongings insured in my student property or do I need to buy insurance? #

      Contents Insurance covering your personal belongings, including tenant liability will be provided if you have opted for one of our bills inclusive packages as part of your tenancy agreement. It is recommended that you purchase contents insurance of your own, if we have not provided cover for you.

      There are several companies that offer student insurance, Endsleigh being an excellent known provider. Before you take out any cover, ensure that the cover is sufficient for your needs.

      Another option would be speaking with your parents/guardians to see if their existing insurance policy can extend to cover your possessions during your stay at one of our properties.

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    • What are the terms and conditions of my tenancy? #

      There are many Terms & Conditions that support and sets out your tenancy agreement and rental payment schedule. It is encouraged that you read through all documentation thoroughly before committing.

      If you have any queries you can speak to us on 0113 274 6642, or seek additional advices from other third party representatives, solicitor, student union, parent, guarantor.

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    • Can I supply my own furniture? #

      We understand that you may want to bring personal items of furniture with you to make your stay a little more comfortable, however, we do require that any items of furniture brought into the property should meet current fire safety regulations.

      Please make us aware/ ask for permission if you are looking to bring in multiple or larger items, as we need to make sure that there is still sufficient safe space within the property for you and any housemates/ guests.

      You can write to us here at [email protected].

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    • Are your student properties furnished? #

      All our student properties are fully furnished.

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    • Will my accommodation be subject to inspections? #

      Inspections will occur periodically throughout your tenancy and are in place so that we, as a landlord, can inspect the property for any maintenance issues that may arise.

      If an inspection is going to be taking place, tenants will be given adequate notice so that they are aware we are attending.

      They are for the benefit of both tenant and landlord and help to maintain the quality of the property.

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    • How do I make a formal complaint? #

      If you are unhappy with the service in which you have received we would be pleased to hear your feedback and understand and work through your concerns.

      Please refer to our full complaints procedure for further help and guidance here.

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    • What happens if I lose my key? #

      New keys can be obtained upon request. If keys have been lost that would identify the property, it may be necessary for locks to be changed and any associated entry fobs to be recoded. Our reasonable costs will be charged to you.

      You are responsible for the safe keeping of your key at all times and we will try our best to help you if lost.

      Unfortunately, alternative accommodation costs will not be honoured by us if you do have to stay elsewhere due to a lost key.

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    • What happens if I get locked out of my student property? #

      Hopefully you will be able to access the property initially by contacting your housemates. If not and you are locked out during office hours, we could hopefully arrange access to your room/ property free of charge, depending on the location of the property and availability of our staff within the area. You will need to confirm your identity.

      You could also borrow a key collected from our office during office hours, with a deposit payment taken, refunded when the key is returned. Out of office hours, a charge would be incurred to gain access.

      If you are safe inside the property, and you have inadvertently locked yourself out of your bedroom, access can be provided the following working day.

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    • Can I put a lock on my bedroom door? #

      In all cases, every bedroom and bathroom should be fitted with a privacy lock, if you don’t think you have one, or it is broken, please let us know.

      If you would like an individual bedroom thumb turn door lock that can be operated with your own key (a key turn Yale lock) please send the request here.

      The installation of a thumb turn lock with an individual key is subject to the property layout and fire risk assessment. If permitted, a fee may be incurred for installation.

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    • What should I do if I don’t want the furniture you provide or would like something removing? #

      The property and its contents are let as seen, unless prior agreement or ‘special requests’ have been made for changes in furniture.

      Any requests you have for any furniture removal must be reported here.

      Where we can, and subject to the items not becoming damaged or dismantled and being unable to be rebuilt effectively elsewhere, we will book in a suitable date for the removal of the items. A charge may be incurred depending on the request.

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    • Can I decorate my room? #

      We would prefer to undertake any required re-decoration works ourselves. If you would like to request to make any cosmetic changes to the property, always seek the landlords permission first, in writing, as it may affect your deposit return at the end of your tenancy.

      If you feel that there are significant decorating needs within your property, please send any requests here.

      Whilst posters and wall hangings are usually permitted, please refrain from using blu tac as this can stain, and multiple / excessive nail use would incur a charge.

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    • Do you allow smoking? #

      All of our properties are non-smoking – Please refrain from smoking in any room of the property including bedrooms and all communal areas.

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    • Do you allow pets in student properties? #

      If you are interested in one of our properties, but are keen to have a pet, please enquire with a member of the team first. Shared Student Accommodation isn’t really an ideal home for a pet such as a cat, dog or rabbit.

      Smaller pets such as fish in a tank or a hamster for example may be accepted with the written permission of the Landlord, however, your housemates will also need to provide written confirmation that they are happy for the pet to be in the property.

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    • What is an EICR (5 year electrical) Report? #

      There is now a legal onus on all landlords to have an electrical installation condition report in place on all rented accommodation.

      These are renewed every 5 years and any remedial required works and repairs will be communicated to you at the time if required.

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    • What is a gas safety certificate? #

      A landlord’s gas safety certificate, also referred to as the landlord’s gas safety record, is required by law to be held for all rental accommodation in the UK where there are gas appliances present.

      It involves a gas safe registered engineer inspecting your gas appliances to ensure they are safe and working correctly. These are renewed every 12 months.

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    • What is a HMO license? #

      A HMO (House in Multiple Occupation) Licence is required if the property is rented to five or more unrelated people who form more than one household. Tenants share amenities and facilities within the property such as kitchens, bathrooms and all communal areas.

      This mainly applies to larger student properties, however, even if your property is smaller and rented to fewer people, a licence may still be required.

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    • What is an EPC? #

      An Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) measures the energy efficiency of a property on a scale of A-G. Energy Performance Certificates were introduced in England and Wales in 2007 and are a legal requirement for a building to be sold, let or constructed.

      Once obtained, an EPC is valid for 10 years. It gives you an idea of how expensive a property will be to run in terms of gas and electric bills.

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    • What is the TDS? #

      Tenancy deposit protection applies to all deposits for Assured Shorthold Tenancies. By law, a landlord or agent who receives a deposit for such a tenancy must protect the deposit. There are several Government Approved Schemes – we have chosen the TDS (Tenancy Deposit Scheme), to protect our tenants deposits.

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    • What is a section 21 for a student? #

      This is a standard legal notice that a landlord must serve you to start the process to end your assured shorthold tenancy. If you are in a fixed term contract in a student property, you will be served notice to leave, at least six months before the end of your tenancy.

      It is a common process for this to occur within the Student Academic cycle – unless you and your housemates have decided to and asked to resign for the property for a further 12 months, it is likely that the property will have already been secured to a new group for the following academic year.

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    • How do I arrange my utility bills for my student property? #

      If you have opted for a Bills Exclusive tenancy package, you will be provided with an advice sheet upon moving in, which will outline the companies to contact in order for you to set up the necessary accounts and find out who the current energy suppliers are.

      It is important to remember that you are responsible for payment of all bills from the first day, up until the end date of your tenancy, even if you haven’t officially moved in. If you have opted for one of our Bills Inclusive tenancy packages, other than register with Leeds City Council to ensure that your council tax exemption is registered, we will arrange everything else.

      If you are uncertain, you can always speak to us on 0113 274 6642.

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    • Do I need a TV licence for my student property? #

      A TV License is required as per the Terms and Conditions of the TV Licensing website https://www.tvlicensing.co.uk/

      However, if you have opted for either our ‘Love It’ or ‘Gotta Have It’ bills inclusive packages then a TV Licence is included.

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    • What happens if I fall into arrears as a student? #

      If you fall into arrears, you will be contacted by us via text, call or email. If you are struggling to make payment, we would encourage you to speak with your learning institution to seek advice on any relevant Hardship Funds that are available to you.

      We can also provide you with various links to help. We can then look to put a suitable payment plan in place. If a positive resolve is not reached or an agreed payment plan is not adhered to, we will seek payment from your guarantor.

      If there is no guarantor provided or no positive resolve reached, under the terms of a joint tenancy agreement, we will turn to your co-tenants for payment. If rents are still not recovered, and our communications have been exhausted, we will look to seek further assistance to recover the debt through legal action.

      Certainly this is something that we wish to avoid, therefore communicating with us is essential.

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    • How much is my rent per term? #

      If you are paying your rent on a termly/ quarterly basis, it accumulates to three months rent per payment.

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    • How do I pay my rent? #

      You can pay your rent by credit/debit card or set up a direct debit here.

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    • How do I use my student maintenance loan to cover rent? #

      Most students will use their maintenance loan to pay rent. Loans are received generally three times a year (September, January, April approx).

      If your rent is due on a different date to when you will receive your loan, you will need to let us know as soon as possible through email and we can usually arrange for you to pay your rent on an agreed date.

      Please be aware that you will be required to make payment of your instalment due in July/start of your tenancy agreement to enable us to release keys for the property to you and your co-tenants.

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    • Can my parents or a third party pay my rent ? #

      Parents, guarantors and other third parties are able to pay your rent on your behalf. Unless you have given consent, we will not be able to share any other details surrounding your tenancy agreement with them.

      If the third party chooses to regularly pay your rent, and would like to pay by Direct Debit, they will need to set up a direct debit from their own chosen account.

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    • How do I set a Direct Debit up? #

      We have a dedicated webpage here for setting up a direct debit Direct debit payments are requested from your nominated bank account on your rent due dates, as per your rent payment schedule.

      Rents will be requested on the Alternative Payment Schedule unless advised otherwise.

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    • What happens if my Direct Debit fails? #

      If your Direct Debit fails, you will be notified by us via text or email. This will show information as to why the Direct Debit has failed. In some cases, there may be a charge for a failed payment.

      You may also be contacted by Go Cardless to advise of any failed direct debits as this is the platform we use to collect our direct debit payments.

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    • What is a Direct Debit? #

      A Direct Debit is when you give permission to us to collect your rent, from your nominated bank account on an agreed date. This date normally coincides with the start date of your tenancy.

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    • How do I get my deposit back? #

      Your deposit is returned once your tenancy has ended, keys have been returned and after a full ‘Check Out’ inspection has taken place.

      We aim to send you a detailed breakdown of the deposit, supporting any deductions, within 10 days after the tenancy has ended, which would usually be emailed to you/ your lead tenant. The deposit balance will be returned to you/ your lead tenant by BACS to your nominated bank account, which is usually processed within a further 5-10 days.

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    • How much is my deposit for my student property? #

      For students, the deposit is £260 per person. For Professional tenants, you will be required to pay 5 weeks rent for your deposit.

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    • What happens if we want a new tenant to move in? #

      In all cases the property must not exceed the allowed number of non-related persons in the residence. If you would like a new tenant to replace an existing tenant in the property we can carry out a process called an assignment.

      There is a small administration charge for this. Under a joint tenancy agreement, before anyone can be assigned to the tenancy, mutual agreement from all other remaining housemates must be obtained.

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    • What happens if I leave my student property before the end of my tenancy agreement? #

      You will still be liable for the property until the initial contract period has come to an end. You can, however, look at the possibility of someone taking over your tenancy, freeing you from its obligation. This process is called an assignment.

      You will need to find a replacement tenant that is mutually agreed upon by all remaining housemates. All existing tenants and the proposed new tenant would need to arrange an agreed time to sign relevant paper work to assign you out and put the the new tenant in your place onto the tenancy agreement.

      If you need any support in finding a new tenant or have any further questions, please contact your property manager.

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    • What happens when I move into my student property? #

      You will need to familiarise yourself with all safety features of the property including a planned fire escape route and fire exits, the location of your boiler and fuse box for example.

      Upon key collection, you will be given a welcome pack with guides and assistance for anything you may have questions about.

      If you are not happy with the condition of the property, or have some general queries or concerns regarding general maintenance, these can be reported here.

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    • When can I move into my student property? #

      You and your housemates can move in from the start date of your tenancy agreement, subject to all paperwork being completed and all necessary payments being made i..e your deposit and first rental payment.

      You can all move in at varying times to suit yourselves on or after the tenancy start date. All keys are usually provided to a nominated tenant, however, please liaise with one another and let us know if you would like us to keep hold of any keys for collection to be arranged as necessary.

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    • When can I collect my keys for my student property? #

      Your keys can be collected from your tenancy start date after 12.00 noon. All that you need to do is ensure that all supporting documentation has been completed, including making sure that deposits and the initial rent payment are made in full by all tenants.

      If you are not collecting keys on your tenancy start date, or require someone else to collect them on your behalf, please contact the office/ your property manager to seek advice and/ or make alternative suitable arrangements.

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    • What happens after I have signed for a student property? #

      After signing your tenancy agreements sent electronically the property will now be your new home. We will be in touch in regards to the next steps, however, in the first instance you will be asked to make payment of a deposit for the property.

      The Right to Rent scheme requires landlords to check that all tenants who occupy their properties have legal status to live in the UK. This means that before you can rent a home in England, a landlord or letting agent must undertake passport and immigration checks prior to letting out the property.

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    • Is there a cooling off period AST? #

      There is no ‘cooling off’ period for tenancies. You will usually be liable for rent from the day the tenancy starts, even if you aren’t living in the property.

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    • What is a periodic tenancy for student properties? #

      All student tenancies are for a fixed term and generally 12 months in length and not periodic tenancies.

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    • Why do I need a guarantor for student properties? #

      It is common for a landlord to ask for a guarantor to ensure a tenant will not default on rent or property damages.

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    • What is a Guarantor? #

      A guarantor is someone who agrees to pay your rent if you don’t pay it, for example a parent or close relative. If you don’t pay your landlord what you owe them, they can ask your guarantor to pay instead. The agreement sets out the guarantor’s legal obligations.

      If you have signed a joint tenancy agreement the Guarantor is responsible for your share of the joint rent, whereas, all joint tenants are responsible for all rents due on the tenancy agreement.

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    • What is a joint contract? #

      A joint contract means that each person is equally responsible and liable for the rent and the property as a whole, including any associated damages that may occur.

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    • What is an Assured Shorthold Tenancy agreement for student properties? #

      This is the most common type of tenancy if you rent from a private landlord or letting agency. They are usually a fixed term of 6 or 12 months.

      It is common for 12 month tenancies to be in place for student properties, July-June, in line with the student letting cycle here in Leeds. This is the legally binding document you would sign when signing up for a property.

      More information here.

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    • What if I have a CCJ or bad credit rating as a student? #

      If you or your prospective guarantor has a CCJ or bad credit please do be upfront and let us know. Bad Credit or a CCJ does not guarantee that you will automatically be unsuccessful in your application.

      We are happy to discuss your options and assess individuals on a case by case basis. 

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    • Are there any admin fees when I sign up for a student property? #

      As of 1st June 2019, most fee’s for any new tenancies were banned. If you sign up for a property there will be no administration charges applied.

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    • How do I sign for a property? #

      Once you have made your property choice, please call us on 0113 274 6642 and we can check if the property you are interested in is still available or whether it has been reserved.

      After deciding which Bills Package you would like, all relevant information and documents will be emailed to all group members to allow you to have the opportunity to have the contracts checked by parents, legal representatives or student unions.

      This will hold the property for 24 hours. If you decide to move forward with the application, all documents will be sent to each of you to complete electronically, which will then secure the property for you all.

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    • How many properties can I view? #

      We would always ask that you initially view any properties of interest virtually using the video tour links on each advertisement. This will then narrow down your search to allow you to view the property you have chosen in person if needed.

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    • Do I meet you at the property or the Pickard Properties office? #

      You will always meet a member of our team at the property that you have requested to view at a pre arranged time. We will always follow any government guidance and company guidelines provided to us at the time of your viewing.

      We may ask that you also follow this guidance provided taking any appropriate safety measures needed. You will be contacted ahead of your appointment to confirm the details of the viewing.

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    • Do you offer weekend and evening viewings? #

      We try to accommodate most viewings during the normal working week but during peak times or under special circumstances we may be able to show properties during the evenings or on a weekend.

      You can always view the property using the video tours provided on the individual property adverts from the comfort of your own home.

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    • How do I book a viewing? #

      You can view the virtual tours available on our website, from the comfort of your own home. If you require a viewing in person at the property or would like more information, click on the ‘arrange a viewing’ link found on the individual property adverts or if it is a general letting enquiry you can use the contact us form on the contact us page.

      You can also call us on 0113 274 6642, or pop into the office to see us.

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    • How do I find the right student accommodation? #

      Finding the right accommodation will start with who you want to live with and where you all want to live. Then you can start to decide on choosing the right landlord.

      Knowing where to start house hunting can be daunting but rule of thumb can be to look out for Unipol Coded Landlords With virtual tours on many properties it is easy for your group to narrow down your choice, before a physical viewing even needs to take place. Virtual tours keeps the carbon footprint down too.

      Start by searching with us here and once you have come across something you like send us a message or call us on 0113 274 6642 to talk about any houses you are interested in.

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    • Where should I live after student halls/accommodation? #

      After living in Student Halls of Residence, most students do usually like to move into a shared student property with a group of friends. Depending on which University and which campus you are based at, and after discussions with your friends, your house search would then be narrowed down to particular areas near Uni.

      Start your search with us here.

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    • What’s the best part of Leeds to live in if I am a student? #

      Students take up residence all over the city, depending on where they are studying. Popular student areas include Hyde Park, Headingley and Woodhouse, which are all within walking distance of university. Living further afield is not a problem though, as transport in Leeds is regular and not too pricey either.

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    • When should I start looking for somewhere to live if I am a student? #

      Once you begin your search for a Student house, it is advisable to view plenty of properties to give you as much comparison as you can, this can be done easily now with Virtual tours.

      View plenty of properties when searching for the right property to give you as much comparison as you can which has become a lot easier now we virtual tours.

      Student properties usually come to market during the latter half of your first term, so if you if you know how many bedrooms you need that is a good starting point.

      Contact us and we can help find the house you need, our team are on hand to offer you support and guidance and we will match you with properties that meet your criteria. We will direct you to our virtual tours and then show you around properties that you are really interested in when you require an in person viewing.

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  • General

    • How long do repairs take? #

      We endeavour to respond to any maintenance requests as soon as we can – please familiarise yourself with our response guidelines:

      Priority One: Any repairs required in order to avoid a danger to health, risk to the safety of residents or serious damage to buildings or residents belongings. Response within 24 hours of reporting the problem. Example – gas leak, fire, flood, only toilet not working.

      Priority Two: Repairs or defects which materially affect the comfort or convenience of the residents. Within 5 working days of the report of the defect. Example – no hot water, no heating.

      Priority three: Reactive repairs not falling within the above categories. Within 28 days of report of the defect. Example –broken cupboard doors, vacuum cleaner not working, painting.

      Our office opening hours are Monday-Friday 9-5:30pm.

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    • What do I do with post that is addressed to someone not living at the property? #

      You can simply: Cross out the address but not the person’s name. Write “Not known at this address, please return to sender”. Pop it in the post box or hand it over to the staff at the nearest Post Office and let Royal Mail return it to the sender.

      Unless the post is addressed to us please do not bring this to our office.

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    • Are my belongings insured in my professional property or do I need to buy insurance? #

      As with any new home we do recommend you purchase some contents insurance to cover your possessions, we insure the building. You may also want to look into accidental damage/tenants liability cover to be included within the policy, so that in the event of carpets being stained, etc, you will be able to pay an excess rather than the full cost of replacement.

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    • Are my belongings insured in my student property or do I need to buy insurance? #

      Contents Insurance covering your personal belongings, including tenant liability will be provided if you have opted for one of our bills inclusive packages as part of your tenancy agreement. It is recommended that you purchase contents insurance of your own, if we have not provided cover for you.

      There are several companies that offer student insurance, Endsleigh being an excellent known provider. Before you take out any cover, ensure that the cover is sufficient for your needs.

      Another option would be speaking with your parents/guardians to see if their existing insurance policy can extend to cover your possessions during your stay at one of our properties.

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    • What are the terms and conditions of my tenancy? #

      There are many Terms & Conditions that support and sets out your tenancy agreement and rental payment schedule. It is encouraged that you read through all documentation thoroughly before committing.

      If you have any queries you can speak to us on 0113 274 6642, or seek additional advices from other third party representatives, solicitor, student union, parent, guarantor.

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    • Can I supply my own furniture? #

      We understand that you may want to bring personal items of furniture with you to make your stay a little more comfortable, however, we do require that any items of furniture brought into the property should meet current fire safety regulations.

      Please make us aware/ ask for permission if you are looking to bring in multiple or larger items, as we need to make sure that there is still sufficient safe space within the property for you and any housemates/ guests.

      You can write to us here at [email protected].

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    • Are your professional properties furnished? #

      Professional properties can be furnished, part furnished or unfurnished and are advertised accordingly.

      If you have seen a property advertised that is unfurnished and would be interested in taking the property on as furnished, please do speak to a member of our team on 0113 274 6642.

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    • Are your student properties furnished? #

      All our student properties are fully furnished.

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    • Will my accommodation be subject to inspections? #

      Inspections will occur periodically throughout your tenancy and are in place so that we, as a landlord, can inspect the property for any maintenance issues that may arise.

      If an inspection is going to be taking place, tenants will be given adequate notice so that they are aware we are attending.

      They are for the benefit of both tenant and landlord and help to maintain the quality of the property.

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    • How do I make a formal complaint? #

      If you are unhappy with the service in which you have received we would be pleased to hear your feedback and understand and work through your concerns.

      Please refer to our full complaints procedure for further help and guidance here.

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    • What happens if I lose my key? #

      New keys can be obtained upon request. If keys have been lost that would identify the property, it may be necessary for locks to be changed and any associated entry fobs to be recoded. Our reasonable costs will be charged to you.

      You are responsible for the safe keeping of your key at all times and we will try our best to help you if lost.

      Unfortunately, alternative accommodation costs will not be honoured by us if you do have to stay elsewhere due to a lost key.

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    • What happens if I get locked out of my professional property? #

      If you have inadvertently locked yourself out of the property, during office hours, we could hopefully arrange access to your property free of charge, depending on the location of the property and availability of our staff within the area. You will need to confirm your identity.

      You could also borrow a key collected from our office during office hours, with a deposit payment taken, refunded when the key is returned. A charge would be incurred to gain access if it it during out of office hours.

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    • What happens if I get locked out of my student property? #

      Hopefully you will be able to access the property initially by contacting your housemates. If not and you are locked out during office hours, we could hopefully arrange access to your room/ property free of charge, depending on the location of the property and availability of our staff within the area. You will need to confirm your identity.

      You could also borrow a key collected from our office during office hours, with a deposit payment taken, refunded when the key is returned. Out of office hours, a charge would be incurred to gain access.

      If you are safe inside the property, and you have inadvertently locked yourself out of your bedroom, access can be provided the following working day.

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    • Can I put a lock on my bedroom door? #

      In all cases, every bedroom and bathroom should be fitted with a privacy lock, if you don’t think you have one, or it is broken, please let us know.

      If you would like an individual bedroom thumb turn door lock that can be operated with your own key (a key turn Yale lock) please send the request here.

      The installation of a thumb turn lock with an individual key is subject to the property layout and fire risk assessment. If permitted, a fee may be incurred for installation.

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    • What should I do if I don’t want the furniture you provide or would like something removing? #

      The property and its contents are let as seen, unless prior agreement or ‘special requests’ have been made for changes in furniture.

      Any requests you have for any furniture removal must be reported here.

      Where we can, and subject to the items not becoming damaged or dismantled and being unable to be rebuilt effectively elsewhere, we will book in a suitable date for the removal of the items. A charge may be incurred depending on the request.

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    • Can I decorate my room? #

      We would prefer to undertake any required re-decoration works ourselves. If you would like to request to make any cosmetic changes to the property, always seek the landlords permission first, in writing, as it may affect your deposit return at the end of your tenancy.

      If you feel that there are significant decorating needs within your property, please send any requests here.

      Whilst posters and wall hangings are usually permitted, please refrain from using blu tac as this can stain, and multiple / excessive nail use would incur a charge.

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    • Do you allow smoking? #

      All of our properties are non-smoking – Please refrain from smoking in any room of the property including bedrooms and all communal areas.

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    • Do you allow pets in professional properties? #

      This depends on the type of property. A lot of our professional properties are apartments and have shared/communal access and would therefore be unsuitable for certain types of pets.

      If you are interested in one of our properties, but are keen to have a pet, please enquire with a member of the team.

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    • Do you allow pets in student properties? #

      If you are interested in one of our properties, but are keen to have a pet, please enquire with a member of the team first. Shared Student Accommodation isn’t really an ideal home for a pet such as a cat, dog or rabbit.

      Smaller pets such as fish in a tank or a hamster for example may be accepted with the written permission of the Landlord, however, your housemates will also need to provide written confirmation that they are happy for the pet to be in the property.

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  • Legal

    • What is an EICR (5 year electrical) Report? #

      There is now a legal onus on all landlords to have an electrical installation condition report in place on all rented accommodation.

      These are renewed every 5 years and any remedial required works and repairs will be communicated to you at the time if required.

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    • What is a gas safety certificate? #

      A landlord’s gas safety certificate, also referred to as the landlord’s gas safety record, is required by law to be held for all rental accommodation in the UK where there are gas appliances present.

      It involves a gas safe registered engineer inspecting your gas appliances to ensure they are safe and working correctly. These are renewed every 12 months.

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    • What is a HMO license? #

      A HMO (House in Multiple Occupation) Licence is required if the property is rented to five or more unrelated people who form more than one household. Tenants share amenities and facilities within the property such as kitchens, bathrooms and all communal areas.

      This mainly applies to larger student properties, however, even if your property is smaller and rented to fewer people, a licence may still be required.

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    • What is an EPC? #

      An Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) measures the energy efficiency of a property on a scale of A-G. Energy Performance Certificates were introduced in England and Wales in 2007 and are a legal requirement for a building to be sold, let or constructed.

      Once obtained, an EPC is valid for 10 years. It gives you an idea of how expensive a property will be to run in terms of gas and electric bills.

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    • What is the TDS? #

      Tenancy deposit protection applies to all deposits for Assured Shorthold Tenancies. By law, a landlord or agent who receives a deposit for such a tenancy must protect the deposit. There are several Government Approved Schemes – we have chosen the TDS (Tenancy Deposit Scheme), to protect our tenants deposits.

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    • What is a section 21 for a working professional? #

      This is a standard legal notice that a landlord must serve you to start the process to end your assured shorthold tenancy.

      If you are in a fixed term contract you may be served notice to leave, six months before the end of your tenancy if the landlord requires possession of the property.

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    • What is a section 21 for a student? #

      This is a standard legal notice that a landlord must serve you to start the process to end your assured shorthold tenancy. If you are in a fixed term contract in a student property, you will be served notice to leave, at least six months before the end of your tenancy.

      It is a common process for this to occur within the Student Academic cycle – unless you and your housemates have decided to and asked to resign for the property for a further 12 months, it is likely that the property will have already been secured to a new group for the following academic year.

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  • Utilities

    • How do I arrange my utility bills for my professional property? #

      It is important to remember that you are responsible for payment of all bills from the start date, up until the agreed end date of your tenancy.

      Initially you will need to establish who already supplies the energy to the property. If you are uncertain, there are various companies that can assist. Please call us on 0113 274 6642 for further assistance if needed. You can continue to set up the utility accounts in your name with the same supplier, or alternatively you could contact a comparison site to find out the best tariff/ deal.

      This can work for broadband/ internet providers in the area also. You will also need to contact Yorkshire Water and the local Council for your area (either Leeds City Council or Calderdale Council) to inform them of your tenancy starting.

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    • How do I arrange my utility bills for my student property? #

      If you have opted for a Bills Exclusive tenancy package, you will be provided with an advice sheet upon moving in, which will outline the companies to contact in order for you to set up the necessary accounts and find out who the current energy suppliers are.

      It is important to remember that you are responsible for payment of all bills from the first day, up until the end date of your tenancy, even if you haven’t officially moved in. If you have opted for one of our Bills Inclusive tenancy packages, other than register with Leeds City Council to ensure that your council tax exemption is registered, we will arrange everything else.

      If you are uncertain, you can always speak to us on 0113 274 6642.

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    • Do I need a TV licence for my professional property? #

      A TV License is required as per the Terms and Conditions of the TV Licensing website https://www.tvlicensing.co.uk/

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    • Do I need a TV licence for my student property? #

      A TV License is required as per the Terms and Conditions of the TV Licensing website https://www.tvlicensing.co.uk/

      However, if you have opted for either our ‘Love It’ or ‘Gotta Have It’ bills inclusive packages then a TV Licence is included.

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  • Rental Payments

    • What happens if I fall into arrears as a working professional? #

      If you fall into arrears, you will be contacted by us via text, call or email. If you are struggling to make payment, we would encourage you to speak with your local council and the Citizens Advice Bureau to seek advice on any relevant Hardship Funds that are available to you.

      We can also provide you with various links to help. We can then look to put a suitable payment plan in place. If a positive resolve is not reached or an agreed payment plan is not adhered to, if you have a guarantor in place we will seek payment from them.

      If there is no guarantor provided or no positive resolve reached, and our communications have been exhausted, we will look to seek further assistance to recover the debt through legal action.

      Certainly this is something that we wish to avoid, therefore communicating with us is essential.

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    • What happens if I fall into arrears as a student? #

      If you fall into arrears, you will be contacted by us via text, call or email. If you are struggling to make payment, we would encourage you to speak with your learning institution to seek advice on any relevant Hardship Funds that are available to you.

      We can also provide you with various links to help. We can then look to put a suitable payment plan in place. If a positive resolve is not reached or an agreed payment plan is not adhered to, we will seek payment from your guarantor.

      If there is no guarantor provided or no positive resolve reached, under the terms of a joint tenancy agreement, we will turn to your co-tenants for payment. If rents are still not recovered, and our communications have been exhausted, we will look to seek further assistance to recover the debt through legal action.

      Certainly this is something that we wish to avoid, therefore communicating with us is essential.

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    • How much is my rent per term? #

      If you are paying your rent on a termly/ quarterly basis, it accumulates to three months rent per payment.

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    • How do I pay my rent? #

      You can pay your rent by credit/debit card or set up a direct debit here.

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    • How do I use my student maintenance loan to cover rent? #

      Most students will use their maintenance loan to pay rent. Loans are received generally three times a year (September, January, April approx).

      If your rent is due on a different date to when you will receive your loan, you will need to let us know as soon as possible through email and we can usually arrange for you to pay your rent on an agreed date.

      Please be aware that you will be required to make payment of your instalment due in July/start of your tenancy agreement to enable us to release keys for the property to you and your co-tenants.

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    • Can my parents or a third party pay my rent ? #

      Parents, guarantors and other third parties are able to pay your rent on your behalf. Unless you have given consent, we will not be able to share any other details surrounding your tenancy agreement with them.

      If the third party chooses to regularly pay your rent, and would like to pay by Direct Debit, they will need to set up a direct debit from their own chosen account.

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    • How do I set a Direct Debit up? #

      We have a dedicated webpage here for setting up a direct debit Direct debit payments are requested from your nominated bank account on your rent due dates, as per your rent payment schedule.

      Rents will be requested on the Alternative Payment Schedule unless advised otherwise.

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    • What happens if my Direct Debit fails? #

      If your Direct Debit fails, you will be notified by us via text or email. This will show information as to why the Direct Debit has failed. In some cases, there may be a charge for a failed payment.

      You may also be contacted by Go Cardless to advise of any failed direct debits as this is the platform we use to collect our direct debit payments.

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    • What is a Direct Debit? #

      A Direct Debit is when you give permission to us to collect your rent, from your nominated bank account on an agreed date. This date normally coincides with the start date of your tenancy.

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  • Deposits

    • How do I get my deposit back? #

      Your deposit is returned once your tenancy has ended, keys have been returned and after a full ‘Check Out’ inspection has taken place.

      We aim to send you a detailed breakdown of the deposit, supporting any deductions, within 10 days after the tenancy has ended, which would usually be emailed to you/ your lead tenant. The deposit balance will be returned to you/ your lead tenant by BACS to your nominated bank account, which is usually processed within a further 5-10 days.

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    • How much is my deposit for my professional property? #

      The total deposit amount depends on the rent of the property. Deposits are charged at 5 weeks rent, rounded down to the nearest £5, as the amount cannot legally exceed the 5 week amount.

      The calculation for working this out is as follows: Rent PCM X 12 = Rent PA Rent PA / 52 = Rent PW Rent PW X 5 = Deposit (Rounded down to nearest £5) PCM – Per Calendar Month PA – Per Annum (yearly) PW – Per Week Using the above calculation, this would therefor mean that if the rent was £500.00PCM, the deposit would be £575.00.

      More information here.

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    • How much is my deposit for my student property? #

      For students, the deposit is £260 per person. For Professional tenants, you will be required to pay 5 weeks rent for your deposit.

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  • Moving Out

    • What happens if we want a new tenant to move in? #

      In all cases the property must not exceed the allowed number of non-related persons in the residence. If you would like a new tenant to replace an existing tenant in the property we can carry out a process called an assignment.

      There is a small administration charge for this. Under a joint tenancy agreement, before anyone can be assigned to the tenancy, mutual agreement from all other remaining housemates must be obtained.

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    • What happens if I leave my professional property before the end of my tenancy agreement? #

      You will still be liable for the property until the initial contract period has come to an end. You can, however, look at the possibility of someone taking over your tenancy, freeing you from its obligation. This process is called an assignment.

      Similarly, if it is agreed that the property can be re-advertised, we can also look at releasing you early from your contract, subject to a new tenant being found.

      The contract would still be in place until any new tenant has collected their keys and, by doing so, confirmed their residence in the property.

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    • What happens if I leave my student property before the end of my tenancy agreement? #

      You will still be liable for the property until the initial contract period has come to an end. You can, however, look at the possibility of someone taking over your tenancy, freeing you from its obligation. This process is called an assignment.

      You will need to find a replacement tenant that is mutually agreed upon by all remaining housemates. All existing tenants and the proposed new tenant would need to arrange an agreed time to sign relevant paper work to assign you out and put the the new tenant in your place onto the tenancy agreement.

      If you need any support in finding a new tenant or have any further questions, please contact your property manager.

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  • Moving In

    • What happens when I move into my professional property? #

      We will arrange a convenient check in appointment with you to hand over your keys and walk you through the property showing you the location of your fuse box and boiler for example.

      You will have 7 days to check and make any amendments to the Checkin Inventory and can refer any additional maintenance queries here.

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    • What happens when I move into my student property? #

      You will need to familiarise yourself with all safety features of the property including a planned fire escape route and fire exits, the location of your boiler and fuse box for example.

      Upon key collection, you will be given a welcome pack with guides and assistance for anything you may have questions about.

      If you are not happy with the condition of the property, or have some general queries or concerns regarding general maintenance, these can be reported here.

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    • When can I move into my professional property? #

      You can move in from the start date of your tenancy agreement, subject to all paperwork being completed and all necessary payments being made. A time and date will be arranged with you to arrange key collection and check in.

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    • When can I move into my student property? #

      You and your housemates can move in from the start date of your tenancy agreement, subject to all paperwork being completed and all necessary payments being made i..e your deposit and first rental payment.

      You can all move in at varying times to suit yourselves on or after the tenancy start date. All keys are usually provided to a nominated tenant, however, please liaise with one another and let us know if you would like us to keep hold of any keys for collection to be arranged as necessary.

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    • Can I make changes to the inventory? #

      You can’t change the notes already made on the inventory but you can add to them. The Inventory report is shared with you after check in and there is a 7 day window after you pick up your keys in which you can add comments and any additional photographs.

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    • What is the purpose of an inventory & how does it work? #

      An inventory is a formal record of the condition of the property at the time of check in. It may include a detailed list of furniture, along with commentary on the fixtures and fittings, decorations, carpets and standard of cleanliness. The same document is produced on check out and comparison of the two reports forms the basis of the deposit return

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    • When can I collect my keys for my professional property? #

      Once satisfactory referencing has been received, contracts signed and all requested payments made, we can release your keys to you at a pre-booked check-in appointment.

      A move in date will have already been agreed prior to the contracts being signed and a meeting time on the day confirmed once the signed contracts are received.

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    • When can I collect my keys for my student property? #

      Your keys can be collected from your tenancy start date after 12.00 noon. All that you need to do is ensure that all supporting documentation has been completed, including making sure that deposits and the initial rent payment are made in full by all tenants.

      If you are not collecting keys on your tenancy start date, or require someone else to collect them on your behalf, please contact the office/ your property manager to seek advice and/ or make alternative suitable arrangements.

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  • Signing up/Application

    • What happens after I have signed for a professional property? #

      Once you have signed the documents sent electronically the property will now be your new home. We will be in touch in regards to the next steps, however, in the first instance you will be asked to make payment of a deposit and the first month’s rent for the property less your holding fee.

      The Right to Rent scheme requires landlords to check that all tenants who occupy their properties have legal status to live in the UK. This means that before you can rent a home in England, a landlord or letting agent must undertake passport and immigration checks prior to letting out the property.

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    • What happens after I have signed for a student property? #

      After signing your tenancy agreements sent electronically the property will now be your new home. We will be in touch in regards to the next steps, however, in the first instance you will be asked to make payment of a deposit for the property.

      The Right to Rent scheme requires landlords to check that all tenants who occupy their properties have legal status to live in the UK. This means that before you can rent a home in England, a landlord or letting agent must undertake passport and immigration checks prior to letting out the property.

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    • Is there a cooling off period AST? #

      There is no ‘cooling off’ period for tenancies. You will usually be liable for rent from the day the tenancy starts, even if you aren’t living in the property.

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    • What is a periodic tenancy for professional properties? #

      If after your initial fixed term contract you are happy in the property and would like to stay there for a little longer. So long as there are no concerns surrounding your tenancy, your contract will become a periodic tenancy agreement, or a rolling month by month contract.

      This means that if you decide to leave after the fixed term you will just need to provide us with one months notice to leave. Under current legislation we are required to provide you with a minimum of six months notice if we are looking to seek possession of the property.

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    • What is a periodic tenancy for student properties? #

      All student tenancies are for a fixed term and generally 12 months in length and not periodic tenancies.

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    • Why do I need a guarantor for student properties? #

      It is common for a landlord to ask for a guarantor to ensure a tenant will not default on rent or property damages.

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    • Why do I need a guarantor for professional properties? #

      It is common for a landlord to ask for a guarantor to ensure a tenant will not default on rent or property damages.

      Under normal circumstances we do not ask for a guarantor for our professional working tenants, unless perhaps at application stage, a tenant would fail referencing.

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    • What is a Guarantor? #

      A guarantor is someone who agrees to pay your rent if you don’t pay it, for example a parent or close relative. If you don’t pay your landlord what you owe them, they can ask your guarantor to pay instead. The agreement sets out the guarantor’s legal obligations.

      If you have signed a joint tenancy agreement the Guarantor is responsible for your share of the joint rent, whereas, all joint tenants are responsible for all rents due on the tenancy agreement.

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    • What is a joint contract? #

      A joint contract means that each person is equally responsible and liable for the rent and the property as a whole, including any associated damages that may occur.

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    • What is an Assured Shorthold Tenancy agreement for professional properties? #

      This is the most common type of tenancy if you rent from a private landlord or letting agency. They are usually a fixed term of 6 or 12 months.

      After the initial fixed period, the tenancy could be seen to go into a periodic or rolling month by month tenancy. This is the legally binding document you would sign when signing up for a property.

      Find more information here.

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    • What is an Assured Shorthold Tenancy agreement for student properties? #

      This is the most common type of tenancy if you rent from a private landlord or letting agency. They are usually a fixed term of 6 or 12 months.

      It is common for 12 month tenancies to be in place for student properties, July-June, in line with the student letting cycle here in Leeds. This is the legally binding document you would sign when signing up for a property.

      More information here.

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    • What if I have a CCJ or bad credit rating as a working professional? #

      We use a third party to reference our professional working applicants. If you do have bad credit or CCJ’s please be upfront and let us know, as failure to disclose this information will lead to your application and referencing failing.

      If your referencing does come back as failed, we can discuss this on a case by case basis with the landlord and, if appropriate, can offer alternative solutions such as a guarantor or advanced rent payments.  

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    • What if I have a CCJ or bad credit rating as a student? #

      If you or your prospective guarantor has a CCJ or bad credit please do be upfront and let us know. Bad Credit or a CCJ does not guarantee that you will automatically be unsuccessful in your application.

      We are happy to discuss your options and assess individuals on a case by case basis. 

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    • Are there any admin fees when I sign up for a student property? #

      As of 1st June 2019, most fee’s for any new tenancies were banned. If you sign up for a property there will be no administration charges applied.

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    • Are there any admin fees when I sign up for a professional property? #

      As of 1st June 2019, most fee’s for any new tenancies were banned. If you sign up for a property there will be no administration charges applied.

      You will, however, be asked to pay a holding deposit (equating to 1 weeks rent) to secure the property. This amount is then subtracted from your first months’ rent when taking up occupation, after satisfactory referencing and signed contracts have been received.

      More information on what you can be charged during a tenancy can be found here.

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    • How do I sign for a property? #

      Once you have made your property choice, please call us on 0113 274 6642 and we can check if the property you are interested in is still available or whether it has been reserved.

      After deciding which Bills Package you would like, all relevant information and documents will be emailed to all group members to allow you to have the opportunity to have the contracts checked by parents, legal representatives or student unions.

      This will hold the property for 24 hours. If you decide to move forward with the application, all documents will be sent to each of you to complete electronically, which will then secure the property for you all.

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    • What is the application process? #

      Call us on 0113 274 6642 and we can check if the property you are interested in is still available. The initial stage we will talk you through the application process, the referencing criteria and general information about the tenancy/ property.

      Once all parties are satisfied to proceed, you will be asked to pay a holding deposit payment (equivalent to 1 weeks rent) which will cease all marketing of the property. You will then complete a third party referencing questionnaire to start the referencing process with Rent4sure.

      Once satisfactory referencing is received, contracts will be drawn up and sent to each tenant to sign electronically. A checkin time and date will be booked in once complete.

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  • Viewing Properties

    • How many properties can I view? #

      We would always ask that you initially view any properties of interest virtually using the video tour links on each advertisement. This will then narrow down your search to allow you to view the property you have chosen in person if needed.

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    • Do I meet you at the property or the Pickard Properties office? #

      You will always meet a member of our team at the property that you have requested to view at a pre arranged time. We will always follow any government guidance and company guidelines provided to us at the time of your viewing.

      We may ask that you also follow this guidance provided taking any appropriate safety measures needed. You will be contacted ahead of your appointment to confirm the details of the viewing.

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    • Do you offer weekend and evening viewings? #

      We try to accommodate most viewings during the normal working week but during peak times or under special circumstances we may be able to show properties during the evenings or on a weekend.

      You can always view the property using the video tours provided on the individual property adverts from the comfort of your own home.

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    • How do I book a viewing? #

      You can view the virtual tours available on our website, from the comfort of your own home. If you require a viewing in person at the property or would like more information, click on the ‘arrange a viewing’ link found on the individual property adverts or if it is a general letting enquiry you can use the contact us form on the contact us page.

      You can also call us on 0113 274 6642, or pop into the office to see us.

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  • Finding the right place

    • How do I find the right professional accommodation? #

      Finding the right accommodation will start with who you want to live with and where you all want to live. Then you can start to decide on choosing the right landlord.

      We now have video tours available for the majority of our properties, making it easier for you to narrow down your choice, before a viewing at the property even needs to take place. Virtual tours keeps down the carbon footprint down too.

      See the properties we have available here and once you have come across something you like, just get in touch by sending us an enquiry or call us on 0113 274 6642 and we can talk you through the next steps.

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    • How do I find the right student accommodation? #

      Finding the right accommodation will start with who you want to live with and where you all want to live. Then you can start to decide on choosing the right landlord.

      Knowing where to start house hunting can be daunting but rule of thumb can be to look out for Unipol Coded Landlords With virtual tours on many properties it is easy for your group to narrow down your choice, before a physical viewing even needs to take place. Virtual tours keeps the carbon footprint down too.

      Start by searching with us here and once you have come across something you like send us a message or call us on 0113 274 6642 to talk about any houses you are interested in.

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    • Where should I live after University? #

      After you have finished your studies, you may want to stay in Leeds longer, whether that is for further education or career and work opportunities. Depending on your budget, there are a few options available for you.

      You could opt for a Professional House share. Financially, these tend to be the most affordable option, with rents being fully inclusive of bills. Socially, it gives you the opportunity to meet new people.

      If living with others is not preferred, you could opt to live in a self contained apartment/ house. This option will cost you a bit more, especially if living alone as bills are not included, however it gives you complete freedom of the property.

      Finally, you could move in with already established friends. Make sure the house or apartment is covered by an HMO (House in Multiple Occupation) if there are 3 or more of you. This could be considered having the best of both worlds, as the property would be made more affordable by sharing the rent and bill costs, whilst also having your mates around for company.

      Start your search with us here.

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    • Where should I live after student halls/accommodation? #

      After living in Student Halls of Residence, most students do usually like to move into a shared student property with a group of friends. Depending on which University and which campus you are based at, and after discussions with your friends, your house search would then be narrowed down to particular areas near Uni.

      Start your search with us here.

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    • Where is the best place to live if I am a working professional? #

      This would depend on your individual circumstances. Whether you are more interested in the hustle and bustle of the city centre, or would prefer the more peaceful surroundings of Far Headingley, there are options for everyone in Leeds.

      If you are a football fan, you may want to consider South West Leeds to be in walking distance of Elland Road, or if Rugby or Cricket are more your style, Headingley / Burley are within walking distance of the Emerald Headingley Stadium.

      Living in the North East of Leeds would place you in walking distance of the famous Roundhay park, with its long nature walks and various concerts all year round. White rose shopping centre is located to the South West of Leeds, with Morley a short drive away from it.

      On the outskirts of the city, Horsforth, Cookridge and Rawdon will put you in between Leeds/Bradford airport and the city centre.

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    • What’s the best part of Leeds to live in if I am a student? #

      Students take up residence all over the city, depending on where they are studying. Popular student areas include Hyde Park, Headingley and Woodhouse, which are all within walking distance of university. Living further afield is not a problem though, as transport in Leeds is regular and not too pricey either.

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    • When should I start looking for somewhere to live if I am a student? #

      Once you begin your search for a Student house, it is advisable to view plenty of properties to give you as much comparison as you can, this can be done easily now with Virtual tours.

      View plenty of properties when searching for the right property to give you as much comparison as you can which has become a lot easier now we virtual tours.

      Student properties usually come to market during the latter half of your first term, so if you if you know how many bedrooms you need that is a good starting point.

      Contact us and we can help find the house you need, our team are on hand to offer you support and guidance and we will match you with properties that meet your criteria. We will direct you to our virtual tours and then show you around properties that you are really interested in when you require an in person viewing.

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