How to find the right rental property
Published Thu, Jan 19, 2012 Updated Tue, Feb 16, 2021
Finding the right rental property can be challenging, but it’s important to move somewhere that is both appropriate and convenient. Everyone deserves a comfortable and well-managed home, so choose your abode carefully – here’s how.
Opt for somewhere in a good state of repair
House-hunting can be a rollercoaster ride. You never know what you’re going to find, but you must stay grounded. Look for something in a good state of repair and ask questions about maintenance. A damp house with cheap fittings can be extremely unpleasant, so make sure you examine the place properly. Find out when the boiler was last tested, as you don’t want to face a broken boiler come winter. and ask about landlord insurance. Unraveling the secrets of the property from the start could save you time and money in the long run.
Inspect all the rooms
Whether you’re looking for a place of your own or a house to share, it’s important to inspect all the rooms. It’s no good taking on a three-bedroom property if one of the sleeping areas is the size of a cupboard. Assess if you’ll be paying less for a smaller room and ensure there’s room for a single, double or king size bed (depending on what furniture you own). It may sound simple, but you really don’t want to misjudge the size of the rooms and end up with no space for your belongings.
Check the garden
If the property has a garden, be sure to check outside. A neat, spacious outdoor area can be delightful in the summer and is ideal for kids. Make sure there are padlocks on gates and bolts on garages – and note down any extras like garden sheds or ponds. You might think you’ll remember but you’ll soon get muddled if you view several houses. If you’re visiting the property in the dark make sure there’s not a railway line or a power station at the bottom of the garden. Many landlords will try to hide the unattractive elements of their property, so don’t get caught out.
Have a chat with your landlord
The property might be nice, but what’s the landlord like? Have a good chat with the owner of the property and see if you’ll get along. A decent landlord could save you a lot of hassle and will go out of his/her way to help you. Check to see if they’re on the ball and ask if they’ve taken out cheap landlord insurance, as this could affect your safety. Ask to view the CP12 certificate, which proves all gas appliances are safe, and ask about the energy efficiency of the property. Avoid overly intrusive questions, but ensure you’ll be moving into a secure property.
Moving house should be fun, so take your time to choose a decent property.