Even if you’re only renting a property, the viewing stage is still crucial to get right. How you prepare for this is key, ensuring you don’t miss out on important details that can either make or break the eventual move.
Although much will depend on your financial situation, the principals of an efficient viewing remain the same. Meticulously inspect every area of the building and don’t cut corners when doing so. This can save a lot of hassle in the future, not to mention the strain of costly renovation jobs.
For professionals who are moving for work purposes, the viewing takes on even more importance. The last thing you need is to balance a new job with a stressful home life.
So, if you’re in the rental market and need some advice on what to look out for, here’s five basic tips for making the most out of your property viewing.
Moving property can cost more than originally advertised. The first month’s rent is often required up front, along with the deposit and administrative fees. Check if all bills, internet, council tax and insurance are included in the overall price as well.m
Also check what is being left behind by the previous occupants. For example, will you have all the required electrical appliances and utilities at your disposal? If not, what additional cost will this incur? Take all potential costs into consideration before agreeing to the move.
You’re not likely to see faults with the property online, so this is where a first-hand inspection is vital. Keep a look out for tell-tale signs such as damp, mould, creaking floorboards and cracks in the wall.
A chartered surveyor is trained to spot these potential issues, as well as problems with the building structure, roof and plumbing. Hiring one at this stage could protect your rental investment for the long-term.
An often-neglected part of a viewing is the ‘liveability’ of the property. Don’t be scared to walk around each room to get your bearings. Consider how many possessions you own and if there’s enough storage space for them, along with the vacuum cleaner, towels, bedsheets, etc.
As another example, inspect where the bed is positioned and consider if there’s space for a bedside table, whether plug sockets are nearby and if the Wi-Fi signal is strong in this area.
This is one of the biggest decisions of your life, so don’t be scared to make a nuisance of yourself. Test everything you can inside the property – taps, showers, toilets, radiators, plugs, etc – to ensure they’re in full working order.
Also ask the letting agent or landlord is there’s been any major issues with the boiler, roof, insulation or ventilation. If there has been, enquire if repairs will be taken care of before you move in.
If you’re a post-grad or young professional, the local area is another important issue to consider. If you don’t drive, think about public transport routes and how easy it is to reach them. Are there grocery shops and other amenities nearby? Is the area noisy?
Likewise, if you have young children, consider how close schools and if you’re in the catchment area. Another good tip is the check online for local crime statistics and the council tax band.
If you’ve previously viewed a listing through Letslivehere and this article has raised some concerns about the property, please don’t hesitate to get in touch. We’re more than happy to answer your questions and provide additional information about any of our rental offerings.