Frequently Asked Questions

About Simple Life

Who is Simple Life?

Established in 2016, Simple Life is a professional, corporate landlord. We build brand new houses and apartments exclusively for the private rental sector (PRS), creating homes people can call their own for the long-term. Working closely with partners at every step from acquisition of land, through build to managing tenancies, we’re a landlord you can trust!

Property Details

Are all your properties new builds?

We are still very much growing, so a huge proportion of our portfolio are brand new, just waiting for its first residents!

Our first development launched in 2016, so even if you move into a property that’s previously been tenanted you can rest assured that it will have been thoroughly checked to make sure it’s as good as new!

What’s different about a Simple Life home?

Up until recently, many customers felt they don’t have the same choice when it comes to renting compared to buying. We’re changing that.

Our properties are built with you in mind – high quality, built to last, and as a blank canvas so you can inject it with your own personality.  We have nearly 100 different property styles, from 1 bedroom apartments to 5 bedroom houses, to suit a range of needs and lifestyles.

We pride ourselves on good quality appliances, fixtures and fittings, including fully integrated kitchens for real convenience. 

You can find out more about our standard spec here, but please bear in mind it may vary slightly by site and property.

How energy efficient are the properties?

All available properties will come with their EPC (Energy Performance Certificate) which contains details of the property’s efficiency.

You will also receive a copy of the EPC as part of your move-in pack.

Does the property come furnished?

The majority of our properties are unfurnished, with the exception of our Empyrean apartment scheme which is fully furnished by LOFT interiors.

However we have partnered with two other furnishing companies to provide exclusive deals on furniture packs to rent and purchase. You can find out more here.

Money

I have bad credit, can I still apply for a property?

We will work with you to find a solution if possible, which may include having you pay a proportion of rent up front (6 or 12 months), or providing a guarantor.

If you’re concerned about your credit history, give us a call and we’ll talk you through the options available.

What fees do you charge?

We always ensure that any fees are completely aligned with legislation, and that means that since the 1st June 2019 we no longer charge any referencing fees.

You will still be required to pay a holding deposit (deductible from your first month’s rent), a security deposit and your first month’s rent up front. You can view a full list of our fees here.

My financial situation has changed and I can’t afford my home. What can I do?

In the first instance please get in touch with us as soon as possible to discuss your situation. If it’s a temporary change, then we will work with you to put together a payment plan to defer or spread out rental payments.

We can also look at alternatives such as moving you to a smaller property so you can stay in the Simple Life family.

How often do you increase rents and by how much?

All our properties will undergo an annual rent review – however this will be in line with market rents at the time of review. We will always inform you of an upcoming rental increase.

What happens to my deposit once it’s been paid?

Your deposit will be lodged with an external, independent deposit scheme such as the Tenancy Deposit Scheme or Deposit Protection Service.

They’ll keep hold of it until you’re due to move out, and also adjudicate any reduction requests to make sure you get back everything that you should.

How do I pay my rent every month?

Rent is paid by Standing Order, which means it is your responsibility to ensure the details and amount are correct.

Moving In

How quickly can I move in?

After you’ve applied for your property, your application will need to go through referencing, where an external party will check all your tenancy details and ensure you’re good to proceed. As always we’ll keep you updated throughout the process so you know what stage you’re at. We will also begin to liaise with you on the estimated move in date.

Properties come available at different times throughout the year, and if you’re moving into a previously occupied home then we will also be arranging a move out date with the current occupiers, whilst allowing enough time to get any cleaning and maintenance done so it’s in perfect condition for you.

If your property is on a brand new development that’s still being built, we will do our best to keep up to date with the build team on progress so we can give you an accurate move in date. As is often the case with construction, we sometimes face unexpected delays – but throughout the process we will keep you as informed as possible so you can start planning your move.

What happens on move-in day?

You will be advised on how to collect your keys up to 24 hours before you’re due to move in, once all documentation is confirmed and received along with any upfront payments. You’ll either need to come to a branch with ID to collect, or will be given instructions on receiving keys from a secure pickup centre. When you move in, you’ll receive a welcome pack with info about your house including handy appliance manuals, as well as a box of goodies with essentials so you can make that first cup of tea!

Who is responsible for notifying the utility companies that I’m moving in?

Whilst we do notify all relevant utility companies of your move in, it is a resident’s responsibility to make sure accounts are fully setup and kept up to date with each utility provider.

Living The Simple Life

What happens if I lose my keys?

Please let us know as soon as possible if you think you have lost your keys, so we can arrange for a replacement set and / or your locks to be replaced. Depending on the circumstances of the loss we may need to charge a small fee.

What happens if I end up with bad neighbours?

Please report any antisocial behaviour to us as soon as possible, and if appropriate inform the police who we always work closely with when needed.

We take disruptive behaviour very seriously and will work with residents to ensure everyone feels safe and secure in your neighbourhood.

What’s it like on a Simple Life development?

We love that our Simple Life developments become friendly communities.

From making sure all front gardens are well-kept, to hosting multiple events throughout the year, we work hard to ensure your neighbourhood is a friendly and comfortable place to be where you can feel a part of your community.

In 2020 we have launched the My Simple Life portal, which will be phasing access to all residents. Here you will be able to find out more about your property, the local area, keep up to date with Simple Life news, and engage with an on-site forum where you can get to know your neighbours!

Can I decorate?

You are welcome to make your home feel like your own by decorating, but we do ask that you get written permission from us first before making significant changes such as painting, wallpapering, or adding anything into the garden such as sheds, flower beds or additional paving.

Any changes to the property need to be returned back to their original state at your own expense before you move out, unless agreed otherwise with our team. This is to make sure that whoever moves in after you gets the same blank canvas to enjoy!

There’s plenty you can do with clever decorating solutions and hacks that won’t affect the property permanently – find out more on our Home Inspiration blog.

Do you cover any maintenance issues?

Within your welcome pack you can find simple and easy tips to keep your home maintained and in working order. You can also find a range of How To videos on our YouTube video for the most common home issues you can fix yourself!

If something does go wrong that you can’t fix yourself, please report this using the FixFlo reporting tool, accessible via the My Simple Life portal or as its own app. You will receive details of how to login when you move in with us.

As long as any problems aren’t caused by misuse or resident damage, you can rest assured that Simple Life will foot the bill to make sure you’re comfortable and happy in your home.

Am I responsible for looking after the garden?

Your back garden is yours to care for, look after and nurture throughout your tenancy. We provide top tips to keeping your lawn looking lush to help you on your way!

Front gardens and any communal spaces are maintained by our partners to keep your neighbourhood neat and tidy.

Once I’ve moved in, how often will you visit the property?

To make sure that your home is fit for purpose throughout your tenancy, and identify any potential issues so we can deal with them quickly, our teams conduct property health checks every six months.

We want you to be confident that we’re looking after your home to keep it to the high standard you expect. You’ll be given plenty of notice when we’re going to be coming around, and you don’t have to be present if you don’t want to. Just let us know!

Who do I contact in case of an out of hours emergency?

Our phone lines are open 24/7 with a dedicated out of hours service.

However should you need emergency attention please call the appropriate emergency services or emergency utility lines.

Can I move into a different Simple Life home?

Absolutely! If you need to downsize, upsize, change location, or want something new, just let us know and we’d love to keep you in the Simple Life family.

I need to add / remove someone from my tenancy agreement

During your tenancy, should your circumstances change or you need to alter the registered occupants, please get in touch with us as soon as possible to arrange. Any new occupiers over the age of 18 will need to be referenced and won’t be allowed to move in until they have passed.

Your rental amount is based on the property, not the number of occupiers, so you will still be liable for the full amount even if someone moves out.

Moving out

My tenancy is coming to an end, how can I stay in the property?

If you’re coming up for renewal and would like to stay, just let us know! After your initial 12 month tenancy, you can either secure your home for an extended period of time (for as long as you like!) or move onto a monthly rolling contract.

We will always get in touch ahead of your tenancy end date to discuss the options with you.

How do I get my deposit back?

Your deposit will be held by an external deposit protection company whilst we go through our end of tenancy checks.

Before you move out, we will go through a property health check with you, and flag in advance any areas where you may see a deposit deduction if it’s not rectified. This gives you time to get everything in order before you leave, giving you the best chance of getting your full deposit back.

Once you have moved out and we have completed a full property inventory check, we will get in touch with the deposit scheme about any deductions needed. We will stay in contact with you throughout the process and will always ensure that all parties are happy with the final amounts. The deposit scheme act as adjudicators with any disputes to ensure we are always acting fairly.

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COVID-19 Update

As the guidance from government continues to change and restrictions are being eased, we are working hard to help prospective Simple Life customers move into their new homes as soon and as safely as possible.

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