How to be a good Pillar tenant

kitchen chairs

A tenant's guide to living in a shared house

How to live harmoniously, comfortably and effortlessly
Learn how to:

  • Be a great housemate
  • Clean and tidy as you go
  • Form harmonious relationships with fellow tenants
  • Operate domestic equipment
  • Be reasonable and know how to compromise
  • Carry out basic maintenance
  • Be responsible with household waste

Most problems in shared properties seem to arise from tenants not taking personal responsibility for communal areas. The (someone else will do it) attitude. People all living together can generate some disagreements. In this case we would advise calling an informal meeting of all housemates, to ensure a smooth running household, most problems can be sorted out by talking.


Our four main criteria for living together

  • Don’t be noisy
  • Keep the place clean and tidy
  • Pay the rent on time
  • Have a mutual respect for others



The hall, landing and stairs (communal parts) must be kept completely clear of any obstruction or clutter, at all times – this is a requirement of the Local Authority, as it forms the fire escapes.

Keep all your belongings in your rooms.

In case of fire, raise the alarm (shout "Fire" as loud as you can!) call the FIRE Brigade on 999, from a safe place. Do not attempt to extinguish the fire and ensure doors are closed behind you.

This is a non-smoking property. When smoking outside the property, please keep away and close the door to prevent smoke entering the building.

DO NOT place toasters under the wall cupboards, when in use.

DO NOT use deep fat fryers at this property.

DO NOT use candles or incense in the house.

DO NOT use any gas appliances, including heaters in the property.

If you introduce any of your own furniture into the house, please ensure that it complies with the safety fire regulations.

All common sense stuff!

Fire Alarm System

In every room of the house, except the bathrooms and kitchens, there is a smoke alarm. They are very sensitive and will be activated by the slightest whiff of smoke! The control panel will display the zone of the house, where the smoke is located, i.e. Smoking in rooms.

A false alarm in which either an engineer or the fire brigade are called out, will result in a substantial fine being issued to whichever tenant has been naughty!

Please report every false alarm. A text is fine.

Kitchen Door

In the kitchen, there is no smoke alarm, but a heat detector instead. Be aware that if you decide to wedge open the kitchen door, smoke from cooking food in the kitchen may set off the smoke alarms elsewhere in the house. If the door is kept closed, the kitchen alarm will not be activated by burning food.


The communal areas are typically cleaned twice each month. Tenants are expected to maintain the property to a good standard of cleanliness and hygiene in between times. It is advisable to draw up a cleaning rota with other housemates. No one is exempt. Please remember, the cleaners are there to maintain the quality on our behalf as the landlords/agents (It is NOT paid for within your rent) They are not there to do it for you in other words.

Viewings, Inspections and Maintenance

Viewings and maintenance will need to be carried out at the property from time to time. There will be the weekly/monthly checks on smoke alarms. Whole house inspections are carried out adhoc meaning we could visit the property at any time. Please report any maintenance issues immediately via your property file login.

Overnight guests

It is common courtesy to inform other housemates if you have the occasional overnight guest. How would you feel, bumping into a stranger in the middle of the night? It is generally accepted, that no more than one night per week is acceptable for overnight guests.

Broadband Access

The house is equipped with broadband. Please do not abuse the band-width. Be respectful to other housemates at all times and understand that you might not all be able to watch Netflix at the same time or download/stream at the same time whilst gaming online and/or working from multiple devices.

Moving In and Moving Out

Please inform Pillar Properties Ltd by email of your intention to leave, as soon as you can, with a minimum of Two month’s notice. Please note: It is your responsibility, at all times, as the tenant to provide the correct notice.

On the day of your departure, please remove all your food/equipment from your kitchen cupboards, the fridge and freezer and clean the space.

Your room was professionally cleaned, prior to your moving in. It must be in the same condition when you leave, or you will be charged for professional cleaning and/or carpet cleaning.

You must ensure that you cancel your standing order for rent payments with your bank.

References will only be provided, if requested by you, in writing.

Any deposit will be returned within 14 days of departure.


It is very important to securely close all external doors and windows, including in the kitchen, when leaving the property unattended.

You may be liable for missing items if it is determined that it was you, that left the door unlocked, or the window open.


Please be careful with your keys. We charge (See your Tariff of charges) for each replacement key provided.

Keys must NEVER be given to people who are not resident in the house and equally, friends must NEVER be left in the house if you are going out.

Electrics and Plumbing

Please DO NOT attempt any repairs yourself. Just turn the appliance off! Then report to us.


Extractor fans must be left on at all times to prevent damp. This is especially important when using the shower room. Please also avoid drying wet clothes within the room and ensure windows are left on the draft lock to encourage proper ventilation of the room.

Blocked Drains

Take care not to allow an excess of hair to clog the shower and basin. Also take care of what is deposited into the kitchen sink and toilet. You may have to pay for a call out and plumbers are very expensive!


The heating and hot water system works well and is regularly serviced.

The heating in the house is on a timer. The overall temperature within the house can be controlled using the thermostat and there is an override switch that can be used at times when the heating is off or when all the hot water has been used.

Electricity and gas bills are included in your rent, when used reasonably!

Out of consideration for your housemates, please DO NOT be irresponsible with any over-ride switches or ‘Extra Hour’ switches.

Also, we do not allow small, portable heaters to be used within the house because they are very expensive to run and also very dangerous if left on by mistake.


You are responsible for changing the light bulb inside your room. Lighting in communal areas is checked on our adhoc visits. However, please always communicate with us if unsure.

Waste Collection

When the bins in the kitchen are full, IT IS EVERYONE’S RESPONSIBILITY TO EMPTY THEM. An overflowing kitchen bin, encourages rats into the house.

Black bin – General waste

Red bin – Recycling

Green bin - Garden

Glass bottles and any other waste please consult the Local Authorities website on Refuse. We do expect everyone to take responsibility for the deposal or waste regardless of what it’s description is. If we have to remove any type of rubbish there will be a charge spread across all tenancies.

Do not overfill them. The lids MUST be able to close, for them to be emptied.

There is a list of what can and can’t be recycled on the Local Authorities website. If you are unsure, please PUT IT IN THE GENERAL WASTE BIN. THE BINS WILL NOT BE EMPTIED IF THEY CONTAIN THE WRONG ITEMS.

Condensation and Damp

We occasionally have complaints about damp or mould. This is usually caused by condensation. With many adults in the house, showering every day, plus cooking and sometimes clothes drying in the house, the moisture level in the house increases so much that it can’t all escape, causing damp and mould.

There are a few points listed below;

Cooking – Cover pans whilst cooking. Open windows and use extractor fans.

Fridge – Do not keep opened food in the fridge, past its ‘use by’ date. If you don’t plan to eat it, throw it away. Mould can spread inside the fridge and will contaminate everyone’s food.

Washing clothes- Clothes should always be dried outside. Washing lines are provided for this purpose. Drying clothes indoors is the biggest cause of mould problems.

Wet towels – If leaving towels to dry out inside your room – keep a window ajar.

Close bathroom doors and open windows after showering and bathing.

Cupboards and wardrobes – do not over fill - the air cannot circulate.

Windows – If you spot condensation on windows in the morning – wipe it off.

If you start to see the first signs of black mould, it can be cleaned away easily using a bleach/water solution or specific mould spray. Dispose of cloth afterwards to avoid further contamination and please inform us.

As tenants you have a responsibility to keep the property in a good state of repair and take steps to ensure it does not become a problem. Work together to ensure a nice, safe environment. If there is a damp/mould problem when you leave the property, you will be charged for the extra cleaning and any remedial work needed.

Communal Areas

Please do not place ANY of your personal belongings in communal areas. Other tenants may be too polite to tell you that it bothers them. Clutter also makes cleaning difficult. Items stored under the stairs pose a fire risk and must be removed.

If you think an unused item has been hanging around the kitchen or bathroom, check with other housemates as to who actually owns it – if no one, dispose of it.

Should you decide between you all, that you would like to put up a Christmas tree or other seasonal decorations, they must be fully cleared and cleaned up, soon after and also must be fire retardant. This includes any stickers or fake snow on windows, for example.

If a pile of letters for tenants who have vacated builds up, please cross through the address and write GONE AWAY on each letter, before putting them back in the post box.


No pets are allowed in this property.

We find the house runs more smoothly when those who live there have a little respect for their housemates. This could be as simple as;

  • Close doors quietly, particularly at night
  • Clean up communal areas immediately after use
  • Do not play loud music - use headphones!
  • Do not turn the TV up too loud – again, use headphones
  • Share any jobs and work out a rota
  • Use a quiet voice when indoors
  • Do not sit on the stairs talking on the phone
  • Do not stay in the bathroom for hours or use all the hot water!

Tips for keeping the house looking its best

Here are some quick and simple cleaning tips to help keep the house and furniture looking its best, follow these to help save money and make sure you get your deposit returned. According to one of the main reasons that Landlords stop money from a tenant deposit is to cover the cost of cleaning, not just your room…but your percentage of the house. Respect.

  • The evening before the cleaner calls, put rubbish in the bin, do the dishesand clear the worktops – this will allow her to do her job.
  • Freezer – let us know if this needs defrosting.
  • Oven – place a layer of foil in the bottom of the oven to collect spills. Replace when dirty.
  • Grill pan – place a layer of foil in the pan, covering the top edges. Replace when dirty.
  • Once every couple of months, soak these overnight in biological washing powder – they will come up like new.
  • Shower – you can use a shower descale spray on the shower screen and shower head. Always ventilate the room after use, to avoid mould.
  • If you spill something, then treat immediately, to avoid staining.
  • Beds – You will be liable for any stains on your mattress. I would recommend the use of a mattress protector.
  • Coke (the drink!) is probably the best cleaner on the market. It cleans sanitary ware, sinks, taps, cookers and many other things. Minimal scrubbing needed! Toilets – just pour a coke into the toilet and leave overnight – and in the morning, flush the loo and it will be clean!
  • If you have failed to open a window and there is black mould on the wall – you need to clean using white wine vinegar to kill the mould. It is a living organism and will just grow back if you don’t kill it properly.
  • A dirty microwave is easily cleaned with a cup of lemon juice mixed with sodium bicarbonate placed inside and microwaved for a couple of minutes. The lemon will evaporate and condense on to the metal surfaces, melting the grease and enabling you to quickly wipe it out. The same mixture can be warmed and used to clean and de-odourise the fridge and freezer.
  • If by some bizarre occurrence, you create a dirty oven, there is a good product called Oven Pride. It comes with a bag, in to which you put your oven trays and pour some of the liquid. Leave overnight and in the morning, the grease will have melted – leaving the trays shining like new. The product comes with full instructions, now all you need to do is to pour the remaining liquid into the oven and spread it around. Within a few hours, the oven is clean and ready to wipe out – again, very little effort needed. You must wear gloves though – it burns!

Living Together

  • Make sure you avoid arguments about the bin, by making a rule about it. The person who fills the bin, must empty it. Always check if you are running close to the end of the bin liner roll, otherwise the bin will overflow and rats/mice will enter the house, after smelling the rubbish.
  • Always remember that other people’s food is not there for you to take –even a splash of milk for your tea. Consider labelling your milk, “Urine Sample” or “Milk Experiment”. This will ensure that no one touches it!
  • Make a rota that includes everyone. No one is exempt from cleaning – they are just lazy.
  • Learn to accept that cleaning jobs won’t always be split fairly but it will balance out over time.

Thank you

If you have any concerns or complaints, feel free to contact us during office hours. Calls received outside these times will be dealt with during the next working day, unless in an emergency.

testimonial quotation
Asset One Wealth System

Pillar Properties and ASSETONE

Pillar Properties Limited works alongside its sister company, ASSETONE Wealth System Limited with 30+ years of experience is designed to help create, build and protect our clients' investment property portfolio using its own Stacking Properties Wealth Strategy and cash flow principles demanding a 11.11% yield or higher and achieving 20% cash-on-cash return on their property investments as to where, when, what and how to buy in order to grow their portfolio.

Grow your portfolio