Privately renting property in the Chiltern area is no different from renting privately anywhere else in England. All landlords and tenants are governed by the same laws.
Traditionally landlords advertise their properties through letting agents. However it is becoming increasingly popular for landlords to offer their properties directly to tenants, for example through independent web sites.
Tenants approaching letting agents or independent landlords are usually vetted through a credit checking agency. This is so that the agent or landlord can check that the prospective tenant is able to pay the rent and has no County Court Judgements against them.
There is usually an administration fee charged to the tenant for these checks. In the Chiltern area this can vary from £75 to £200 per person, so it is wise to ask what the administrative costs are before entering into any agreement.
In the private sector it is usual for the landlord or agent to ask for one month's rent in advance. They will also ask for a deposit and this can be either one month rent, six weeks rent or sometimes two months rent. Any deposit taken must, by law, be held in a Deposit Protection Schemes.
For further information on private renting you may finduseful.