Law guide: Landlords

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Rent book

Rent book

Contents

If a rent book is required, the landlord (or agent) is responsible for providing it, and the tenant is responsible for presenting it to the landlord (or agent) to record and update rent payments made.

You can get a standard rent book suitable for residential tenancies from law stationers and general stationers.

You should keep a separate record of rent payments, or provide receipts for rent paid; this can help to avoid any dispute later.

England & Wales

You're required to provide a rent book only if the rent is payable weekly; it must contain certain information including:

  • The address of the premises
  • The name and address of the landlord and agent (if any)
  • Amount of the rent to be paid
  • Details of the accommodation that the tenant has a right to share with others (if any)
  • Any other terms and conditions of the tenancy
  • That the tenant is protected from eviction without a court order
  • That they may be entitled to apply for housing benefit to help with the rent

Scotland

In a private residential tenancy, if the tenant pays rent in cash you must give them a written receipt.

That receipt must show:

  • the amount paid;
  • the date that it was paid; and
  • whether the rent is now paid up to date and if it is not, how much is still to be paid.

You're required to provide a rent book only if the rent is for an assured or short assured tenancy that is payable weekly. It must contain the following information:

  • The name and address of the landlord
  • Amount of the rent to be paid
  • A summary of the tenant's basic rights under the Housing (Scotland) Act 1988

Northern Ireland

You must provide the tenant with a rent book within 28 days of the tenancy start date for all private lettings (under Article 5 of the Private Tenancies (NI) Order 2006).

If you don't provide a rent book, you'll be committing an offence and the local council can take action against you.

The rent book must contain the following information (under the Rent Book Regulations (NI) 2007):

  • Name, address and phone number of the landlord (and landlord's agent, if any)
  • Name of the tenant
  • Address of the property being let
  • Capital value of the property
  • Tenancy start date
  • Rent payable and the period covered by each payment
  • Amount of the rates payable for the property in addition to the rent and the period covered by that payment
  • Amount and description of any other payment the tenant is required to make in addition to rent and rates (for example, for heating or other utilities or services)