Housing matters

Whilst at university things usually run smoothly with your housing, however sometimes difficulties can arise. The following information highlights some of the common concerns and addresses how to deal with them.

Rent arrears

It is always best to keep your landlord informed if there is going to be any delay in paying rent. You can also get some advice from the Student Finance and Weflare team about how to approach your landlord if you have problems either with rent or your tenancy.

Are you being asked to leave your property?

If an agreement cannot be reached with a landlord over rent arrears payments, the landlord may threaten eviction.  The landlord must serve a ‘Notice to Quit’ on the tenant giving a time scale.  If the tenant does not comply with this, the landlord may then go to court to apply for a ‘Notice Seeking Possession’.  Again there will be a time scale on this for the tenant.  If the tenant does not comply with this notice the landlord can go to court to obtain an ‘Eviction Order’.  An eviction cannot legally take place unless the above process is followed.

Attempting to evict a tenant for non-payment of rent without a court order is a criminal offence punishable by a fine or imprisonment.

If you need advice regarding eviction, please contact a Welfare Officer:

T: (0116) 257 7595, option 3, then option 4

E: sfw@dmu.ac.uk

Council Tax

Full-time students are eligible to claim Council Tax exemption from their local Council.

In order for Council Tax exemption to be granted, proof of your student status is required. In most cases your Council will automatically be notified by DMU of your eligibility, therefore there is no need for you to request a Council Tax Exemption Certificate.

Twice a year; at the end of October and the end of March, DMU’s Student Administrative Support department produces a Student List of all full-time students to send to the following Councils to notify them of eligible students living in their local authority area:

  • Hinckley and Bosworth District Council
  • Market Harborough District Council
  • Oadby and Wigston Borough Council
  • North West Leicester District Council
  • Leicester City Council.

If you DO NOT live in one of the above areas, you should request a Council Tax Exemption Certificate from the Student Gateway, either in person, over the phone or via email; where it can then be posted or emailed directly to you or your Council (on provision of the appropriate address details). Contact details are on the right.  

Please note: In order for us to be able to provide the Councils with notification of a student’s eligibility for Council Tax exemption we must hold the correct address for you. It is the responsibility of the student to ensure that we hold your current full postal address. If your address is incorrect on the University’s records, the documentation we provide will not reflect your current address details; therefore it is likely that you will not be automatically exempt from Council Tax. You are able to update your address via myDMU at any time.

We are aware that some Landlords/Letting Agents may request Council Tax Exemption Certificates in advance of you moving into a property. In these cases a Council Tax Exemption Certificate should be requested via one of the methods stated above. We are only able to provide certificates for students who are enrolled. Therefore, first years requiring a certificate prior to enrolling, will need to provide their Offer Letter as their proof of being a student and then provide a Council Tax Exemption Certificate once they have enrolled.

The following students are not exempt from Council Tax:

  • Part-Time Students
  • Students living with non-students (the student is exempt but the property is liable)

Although the above groups are not exempt from paying Council Tax they may be able to pay a reduced amount if they are on a low income.

If you are from one of the following groups, you may qualify for Council Tax exemption, but you should contact us first to determine if this is the case: 

  • Distance Learning Students
  • Writing Up Students

For households where there is only one non-student adult a Single-Occupancy Discount can be applied for. Students wishing to support the claim of a parent or partner looking to attain the Single Occupancy Discount can request a Council Tax Certificate for these purposes.

For more information, to check your eligibility for an exemption or to request a Council Tax Certificate please contact us via:

Student Gateway, Gateway House

T: 0116 257 7595 (option 3, then option 1)

E: sas@dmu.ac.uk

TV Licence

Students who watch any programmes live or on demand, without a TV Licence, risk prosecution and a fine of up to £1,000. This includes watching programmes on devices such as your laptop, PC, mobile phone, games console, digital box, DVD recorder or anything else. Your hall's licence won’t cover you, and you may not be covered by your parents’ licence.  Don’t get caught out! Visit the TV Licensing website to find out if you need a licence  tvlicensing.co.uk.

Getting a refund

Good news if you move out of your term-time address for the summer months, you can request a refund for the cost of the license for that time – which could be around £37. As long as your licence is still valid for at least three full calendar months and you don’t need it again before it expires.

 
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