The Landlord would usually require the first month’s rent to be paid in advance with the deposit and it should always be in cleared funds before the tenant takes possession of the property. (You hand over the keys)
Cleared funds may either be by cash on the start day of the tenancy agreement, by BACS transfer into the Landlord’s account or by cheque, ensuring the check has cleared.
Tip - Remember, if you are accepting cash from the Tenant, make sure that you write a receipt with the date on it, the reason for the payment and the address of the property it relates to. Sign the receipt and have the Tenant countersign and give the Tenant a copy. This is best practice and will help you should you require proof of payment received.
In most cases, it would be prudent to set up a standing order from your tenant’s bank account to pay your bank account on a weekly, monthly, quarterly basis (determined by the payment frequency in the AST).
You can download a Standing Order Form as part of the Property Management Letter Pack and ask your tenant to complete and send to their bank.
A standing order can be cancelled by the tenant at any time and the landlord cannot insist on this or any other method of payment. If the rent is paid in full when it is due the Landlord must accept the tenants preferred method of payment, refusal to accept rent paid by any legal means may result in loss of the right to claim that payment.