The Contract and Liability
We, Winterton Cottages ('We',‘Agent’) act as booking agents for owners (‘Owner’) of holiday properties and maintain a list of properties for this purpose which we publish in the form of a website. Letting arrangements are made by the Agent on behalf of the Owner and the contractual relationship in connection with the letting will be between you as the holidaymaker ('Customer') and the Owner.
The Agent is not and will at no time be party to that contract. On placing a booking, once confirmed by us as the Agent, you the Customer enter into a short-term holiday rental agreement with the Owner. The agreement shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of England and Wales. These conditions shall be deemed to have been accepted by the Customer at the time of completing the on-line booking form, booking by email or by telephone, or when either the deposit or full payment for the holiday is received by the Agent.
Once the completed Booking Form and the Initial Deposit have been received and accepted by Winterton Cottages, you will receive written confirmation. You should carefully check the details of the written confirmation and inform Winterton Cottages immediately of any errors or omissions.
The Agent reserves the right to refuse any booking. In this eventuality any money you have paid will promptly be refunded. The Agent shall have no liability to the Customer for any fees, expenses, damages or loss resulting from the booking.
Prices, Payment and Deposit
No contract with the Owner exists until a minimum of 30% deposit payment has been received by the Agent and a confirmation of the booking has been issued to the Customer. The contract is subject to these booking conditions.
If the letting start date is within eight weeks of the date of the Agent receiving the booking request, the full amount is payable. Once a deposit is paid, the Customer becomes liable for the balance of the rent and this must be paid a minimum of eight weeks before the commencement date of the holiday.
If you fail to make a payment due to the Agent in full and on time we may treat your booking as cancelled by you.
Payment is accepted by debit or credit card.
The Agent reserves the right to change the advertised prices of any property without notice. The holiday price will be confirmed at the time of acceptance of the booking and is fixed at that point. No increase will subsequently be requested or reduction offered if the prices change after the booking has been confirmed.
Cancellations must be immediately notified to us by email.
Cancellations as a result of "Government Order or a Change in Law", excluding weather-related advice, will receive a full refund or can ask to reschedule for a later date. Cancellations for any other reason will be subject to our standard cancellation terms as follows.
If a Customer cancels their booking and we are able to re-let the dates, we will refund the Customer the amount from any replacement booking (which may be less than they paid e.g. if the final letting price was discounted or only some of the days are re-let) minus an administration fee of £45. If we are unable to re-let the Customer remains responsible for the rental and there will be no refund under any circumstances, other than the return of any security/damage deposit which has been paid.
We strongly advise Customers to take out independent holiday insurance for their stay as we are unable to offer any refund or deferral option if you or a member of your family or others in the party has to self-isolate due to or contracts Covid-19. The standard cancellation policy will apply to the booking.
If for any reason we have to cancel your booking in advance due to circumstances beyond our control for example fire, flood, or destruction/damage to the property (“force majeure“) you will be refunded the full amount of the booking. If we have to terminate your holiday early for the above reasons you will be refunded part of the lodging costs based on the time remaining of the booking. This will be the full extent of the liability of the Owners. No additional compensation, expenses or costs will be payable.
Change of Dates or Property Booked
Once a booking has been accepted by the Agent on behalf of the Owner it can only be changed to another property by treating the original booking as a cancellation, and is subject to our Cancellation Policy (see above).
Period of Hire
The rental period commences at 4:00pm on the day of arrival unless stated otherwise and terminates at 10:00am on the day of departure. These times must be respected in order for us to ensure our full service standards can be adhered to. Please be aware that the whole cottage has to be cleaned and prepared during a limited changeover period and maintenance issues resolved too, which can easily take 6 hours.
If your arrival will be delayed significantly, you must contact the person whose details are given on the booking confirmation so that alternative arrangements can be made. If you fail to do so you may not be able to gain access to the property. If you fail to arrive by midday on the day after the arrival date and you do not advise the contact of your anticipated late arrival we may treat the booking as having been cancelled by you.
Keys must be collected and returned as per instructions provided.
Use of Property
The booking shall be deemed to be for the purpose of the person or people whose names appear on the booking form. The maximum number of persons allowed at the property is stated in the particulars and corresponds to the number of beds provided and MUST NOT be exceeded. In the event the maximum number of allowed persons has been exceeded the Owner has the right to revoke the booking without refund and ask all persons to leave the property immediately.
Only the persons whose names are detailed on the booking form are permitted to stay in the property.
If more than two day visitors to the property are expected, this must be agreed in writing with the Agent or Owner and their names provided. No more than two day visitors to the property are permitted without prior approval of the Owner.
Bookings will not be accepted from parties of young people or single sex parties of more than four people without agreement and we reserve the right to refuse or revoke any bookings from parties which may in our opinion be unsuitable for the property concerned.
A cleaning/damage deposit, referred to as a 'Security Deposit’ may be requested by the Agent on behalf of the Owner before acceptance of any booking.
No parties are permitted to be held within the house or grounds of any of our properties without the Owner's permission.
Care of the Property
The Customer is required to keep the holiday home and all furnishings, fixtures, fittings and effects in the same state of cleanliness, repair and condition as they were in at the commencement of the holiday and will be responsible for any damage to the holiday property or the furniture, fixtures, fittings and effects and must ensure that the property is left clean and tidy, both inside and outside the property. Anything broken or damaged should forthwith be repaired or replaced with an article of similar type or value to the satisfaction of the owner. If this is not possible any damage or breakage should be reported to the Owner immediately and paid for before departure. In default of such obligation, the Customer is legally obliged to reimburse the owner against any costs incurred by the Owner in remedying such default.
The Owner reserves the right to charge the customer for the cost of repairing any damage and/or replacing damaged items caused by the Customer or their party during the stay. The property is required to be left in a clean and tidy condition, as found. If any exceptional cleaning is necessary, the Owner will charge the Customer direct and legal action will be taken in the event of non payment.
The Customer must not assign or part with the possession of the property or any part of it or anything contained in the property or use it other than as a single dwelling for holiday occupation by the people whose names appear on the booking form.
The Customer must ensure that nothing happens which may be a nuisance or inconvenience to occupiers of neighbouring property or adversely affect any insurance of the property.
The Owner may charge a damage/good housekeeping deposit, referred to as a 'Security Deposit'. The refund is processed by us within 14 days of departure if our terms and conditions are met. We’ll notify you by email you once we have made the refund but please note that it may take up to 10-14 days for the refund to reach your account due to individual bank processing times which are beyond our control.
We respectfully request that due consideration is shown to the inhabitants of neighbouring properties and noise is kept to a minimum, particularly late at night or in the early morning.
Children and Safety Advice
Customers must accept full responsibility for the safety of any children in their booking party. Our rental properties are general domestic properties and no assurances can be provided as to the safety or suitability of the property for the Customer, the Customers' children or pets. Cots, highchairs and other baby equipment may be available upon request for infants but Customer are advised to check the safety of any such items before use and also the circumstances of the environment within which they are to be used. Travel cots provided do not include mattresses or bedding for safety reasons, and you will need to bring your own.
The Agent draws the Customers' particular attention to keeping a close eye on children of all ages (or other members of the party who may not be able to adequately identify risks) whilst at the property, particularly in regard to the proximity of roads and rivers, open fires, open windows and the use of BBQ equipment. Please be extra vigilant with:
Balconies, railings, small walls and fences or boundaries with gaps - small children are able to squeeze through gaps and climb and neither the Agent nor the Owner accepts any responsibility for any accidents that happen as a result.
Glass doors and windows - these can be difficult to see in bright light and Clients are particularly advised NOT to open sash windows in period properties, due to the danger of falling and the mechanism of the window.
Wooden and tiled floors - can be very slippery when wet and should be avoided by those with wet feet.
Properties adjacent to water - Customers must take extra caution with children in properties near water. Do not permit any children to access the outside areas unattended and they should be closely supervised at all times.
Right of Access
The Agent or the Owner of the property shall be allowed the right of entry to the property at all reasonable times during a Customers' stay for the purpose of inspection or to carry out necessary cleaning, repairs or maintenance. However, we will seek to minimise any disruption.
No Smoking Policy
No smoking is permitted in any of our properties and if you smoke outside, all butts must be removed.
Use of Cleaning Materials Provided in the Property
Complimentary cleaning materials are sometimes provided in the properties however whilst every effort has been made to ensure they are hypoallergenic, use of these items is at the Customers own risk and no responsibility will be accepted for any adverse reaction.
It is clearly stated in the property particulars whether or not pets are allowed at the property. This must be strictly adhered to. If you exceed the number of pets allowed at the property you will be asked to leave. We do not accept dogs under the age of one year old and pets must be fully housetrained and well behaved. If pets are allowed then they MUST be kept under strict control. At the point of booking your holiday, you are deemed to have confirmed your adherence to our booking conditions.
Some Owners ask that pets are not left on their own in the property. Please check with us first if this might be an issue for you.
Pets must not be permitted to cause any damage to the property or gardens nor cause any other kind of nuisance to neighbours. If any soiling occurs in the grounds of the property it must be removed immediately. On departure pet hairs should be removed and any exceptional cleaning costs incurred by the Owner in order to reinstate the property to the clean condition it was in at the start of the rental period will be charged to the Customer.
Some of the properties have stair gates available for use with children or pets. The individual cottage web page should be checked for more information or an enquiry is made to the Agent. Some properties have fixed stair gates and others portable 'self-fit' gates. You are requested to fit the portable stair gates yourself in order that you can satisfy yourself that they are secure (no tools are necessary). Neither the Agent nor the Owner of the property will accept any liability for their misuse or any accident involving them.
Website and Advertising Information
The Agent takes every care to ensure the accuracy, both written and verbal, of the property, the village and local amenity details. All information on the website, on third-party websites, in printed material and provided in email or verbal communications is given in good faith and is believed to be correct at the time of writing, going to press or otherwise communicated. However the Agent cannot be held responsible for changes beyond its control which may become known after writing and going to press. In addition, whilst we advertise properties as non-smoking or no pets as instructed by the Owner, we cannot guarantee the fact.
The Agent's description of a property shows the amenities that property has but generally does not state what is not in the property. Furthermore, neither the Agent nor the Owner can accept liability for happenings outside its reasonable control such as the breakdown of domestic appliances, heating systems, plumbing, wiring, temporary invasion of pests, interference from neighbouring buildings works, damage resulting from exceptional weather conditions.
If there is a breakdown of any of the utility services at the property (ie. heating, electrics, broadband, etc. the Owner will make every endeavour to get the problem fixed as soon as possible and will take any appropriate steps to provide an alternative source of heat/power. No refunds will be provided for any loss of amenity in this respect.
The Agent cannot accept liability for the Owner's negligence resulting in loss, injury or accident. Please be aware that if a property is advertised as having an enclosed garden, this does not necessarily mean a secure garden. It may be enclosed by hedging, open style fencing or have a low wall or fence.
Broadband Internet Access
In properties where broadband internet access is offered as a facility, it is offered on a complimentary basis and is not guaranteed to always be available or at the speed you may be used to. Your use of the internet is conditional upon it being used for legal purposes only.
Electrical Vehicle Charging Policy
We do not currently have on-site charging facilities at any of our properties and you must make your own arrangements for EV charging. Domestic chargers (commonly known as granny or trickle chargers) are not suitable for use at any of our properties and will create a fire hazard. The use of domestic chargers via a 3-pin wall socket either from within or outside the property is strictly forbidden. We retain the right to carry out reasonable inspection, on a without notice basis, to ensure that granny chargers are not in use in the Property. You are solely liable for any damage or loss suffered by us as a result of your unauthorised use of domestic chargers.
Every effort has been made to ensure that you have an enjoyable and memorable holiday. If however, you have any cause for complaint it is important that remedial action is taken as soon as possible.
If the Customer has a genuine complaint in respect of the holiday home then this should immediately be reported to the Owner, for which contact details are provided in the property. The Agent accepts no liability for remedying a complaint that may be received by them, but will promptly refer the complaint to the Owner.
Complaints which are not reported immediately will not be entertained subsequently and certainly not after the end of the rental period. The Owner must be given the opportunity to rectify any problem identified by the Customer during their stay. No correspondence will be entered into in respect of complaints made on departure or after the Client's return home.