Our Rent Now tenancy creation service ensures that your tenancy is set up in line with the best possible industry practice, giving you peace of mind that your money is protected.
We secure your deposit in a government-backed protection scheme and the first month's rent is only passed to the landlord once you have moved in and you receive your new home as expected.
You can find out more about how OpenRent protects you as a tenant here.
What if a landlord has their own tenancy agreement?
Sometimes the landlords that use OpenRent will want to use their own tenancy agreement or deposit protection scheme. These landlords are usually well-established and have been managing their own properties for years.
This is nothing to be concerned about in itself. Thousands of tenancies are created like this online and offline every week in the UK. We would, however, advise that you read through any documents carefully before signing and take your own legal advice if you are unsure of anything.
What if a landlord asks for money outside of OpenRent?
We cannot guarantee the safety of tenant money unless our Rent Now process is used. However, there are steps you can take to ensure your money is as secure as possible.
1. You should take a receipt for the Holding Deposit and ask the landlord to confirm in writing what terms the Holding Deposit will be governed by when it's placed. You will also want to be sure of their identity for instance by asking to see some proof of ID like a driving licence or passport.
2. We never recommend handing cash over to the landlord - you should use bank transfer or other regulated money transfer. This will give you proof the money was transferred, as well as knowledge it's being sent to a registered bank account.
3. Providing you proceed to sign a contract and are asked to pay the security deposit for a property, you should check that your money has been protected in an approved scheme within 30 days of paying. More guidance on this can be found on Shelter's website below. If this does not happen, you may be able to claim a penalty award.
Even when following the above guidance, OpenRent cannot guarantee the security of your money outside of our Rent Now process. We would always advise speaking directly with the landlord and explaining you would be more comfortable using our Rent Now process to pay the initial funds associated with setting up a tenancy.