Searching for a rental property can be a stressful process, especially if you’re new to the rental market and its potential pitfalls. However, with the right approach and with a little background knowledge you can avoid many common problems and save both time and money.
To find properties to rent and to make sure these properties are worth your time to view, take note of some of the questions you should be asking. Firstly, list what you are looking for in a property. Do you want a bath and shower? Do you want a furnished or unfurnished property? Think about how many bedrooms you want and whether or not a garden is an important feature for you.
Check how much space you’ll need and if you’re looking for a family house or a flat. If you are looking for just yourself you may well be willing to share with someone else, so don’t forget to add this to your list. Renting also impacts on your choice of transport so check if there is space for parking and how close you would be to public transport.
When you’ve got your list it’s time to start looking. Newspapers will list adverts for rental properties but it’s quick and simple to check what’s available with an on-line property search website. These sites provide features that enable instant and wide searches, with results returned within seconds and each property easily examined in more detail.
When beginning your search it’s worth starting with a specific area, a price range and possibly a specified number of bedrooms. However, if you’re not tied to being within a certain area, you may find better options for rental properties if you expand your search up to 10 miles. If you’re on a tight budget, take a look at the latest trends for towns and cities and specific postcodes and where you’ll find properties for rent at lower rates.
Take care when reading the specification of each property, identifying questions that you would need to ask the agent and landlord. Then take a look at the photos and where the property is situated in relation to local schools, parks and main roads. Think about what local amenities you would need and if a property can meet these needs.
Then, with a final list of properties, start ringing estate agents to arrange viewings. Never rent a property without viewing first as photos can miss things out. Take your list of questions with you when you view and check the building over to make sure all equipment works. Make sure it has running hot water, a working toilet, furniture that meets fire regulations and fire alarms.
Next look at the building as a whole. Consider how safe the windows and doors are, how well built the house or flat is and how safe the local area feels. It is also important to think about local noise levels. Sometimes it can help visiting an area at different times to check how a neighbourhood feels on a Friday or Saturday night.
You may find you view many properties before finding something that looks and feels right. However, once you find a place that fits and that meets your requirements it’s all well worth the trouble. A rented property really can feel like home.