Renting a property for the first time can be quite stressful as well as challenging. It’s always a good idea to rent first before considering buying. It’s generally cheaper and you can also get a feel of the location. You’ve never done this kind of thing before and you really don’t know what to expect. Don’t worry. This guide is to help make the renting process a whole lot simpler and straightforward. Here are a few things for you to consider:-
- Finding the right type of landlord – there are many private landlords ready to rent out their property, but do make sure they are ARLA registered. This means the landlord belongs to the Letting Association and must adhere to rules, regulations and codes of practice. Websites too offer letting agent information and lots of properties to choose from. Just register with one you feel confident with and take it from there.
- Choosing the right location – have a recce of the area you’re interested in to make sure it has everything you need. Are there grocery shops, supermarkets, bars, restaurants and pubs nearby? If whatever you need close by isn’t there, don’t move there! Take your time to make sure the location is handy for work, transport links if needed, banks, hairdressers and anything else you might need is in the area. Find out more with our area guides.
- Short or long-term let? – this is very important. You don’t want to sign for a short-term contract if you fancy staying in the property for a long time. Conversely a long-term let can also have its disadvantages. You may need to move house if you’ve been successful getting another job in a different area or the kid’s schools may not live up to expectations.
- Who should view the property? – the logical answer for who should view the property is everyone who is going to move in. It gives you the opportunity to picture living there, see if it’s large enough, has plenty of storage and you feel quite at home. A suggestion is to ask a friend, member of your family or someone who knows you very well, to go along with you. They will see the property differently to you and maybe offer helpful suggestions.
- The best time to see a property – weekends and evenings are usually very busy times for seeing a property so take a day off work to see either the property you like or a few others. Try and visit at different times of the day and evening to make sure it’s quiet (if that’s what you want).
Other handy hints, tips and advice
Whoever is acting as your referee, keep them in the picture. Let them know well in advance you have used their name, just in case the landlord or estate agent needs to get in touch. Maybe you need a guarantor. Make sure this is someone who can vouch for you. Another point to bear in mind is you must have legitimate ID to show you are entitled to rent a property in the UK.