1. Be realistic!
When we first started thinking about moving out, we set a realistic date and how much time we would have to save up until then. Don’t look way too in advanced if you’re not ready – we made the mistake of searching for places, found some that we loved but was no where near enough ready to put down a deposit.
2. Think about your budget – £££
Every search for flats for rent needs to start here. Understand what you can afford to spend each month and don’t forget about bills! If you’re one of the lucky ones, to have rent which includes bills already. Don’t forget to include your budget for transportation to and from work.
3. What area do you want to live?
London is actually a very big city and has many choices to live in. When thinking about where to find a flats or houses for rent, think about where you want to go – think about where your friends, family or work are located and the area itself, safety and convenience.
4. What’s more important: property or location?
All houses and flats for rent searches are driven by these two criteria. In an expensive city like London, you will likely need to compromise on one of these criteria. We’ve experienced finding such a great flat with reasonable rent but it’s not in the right location or visa versa, or great flat but too expensive – Think about what is most important for you in your search. You may have to compromise!
5. Do your research!
I don’t just mean about the property, I’m talking about the websites you’re using, the apps you’re using and the possible agent – make sure they are legit! Use sites/apps that have a reputation, don’t take the risk – I even had to look up the person we were speaking to on LinkedIn, you can never be too careful. This is your future.
6. Ask questions.
Never assume anything about a property! If the property you’ve viewed has a crack in the window, don’t just assume it will be replaced – ask if it will be. Always ensure you understand all the costs in renting a property and what fees are necessary: reference & admin fees, inventory and check-in/out, end of tenancy, renewal, change of tenant, etc.
7. Confirm everything in writing!
Make sure you actually read through any document you sign! All key matters before you sign the lease on any house of flats for rent need to be communicated in writing. This is proof in case there is any conflict in the future. It is important to even discuss the little things, even on the inventory. For example if it say’s single bed instead of double bed or that there’s a mirror in the bathroom when there’s not – make sure to flag it up or have it corrected.
It’s been just over a month since we’ve moved out and now we’re currently living in a shared house in a lovely location – it may not be completely own own yet, but it’s definitely a start.
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