Monday, 2 October 2017

Top Tips For Renting*

After close to 10 years of renting in London, I finally purchased my own home last year. The renting market can be a scary place so I thought I'd put together my top tips for renting! The good, the bad and my experiences of renting.
*collaborative post

Top Tips For Renting*

I left home to venture out into the wide world of renting when I was 18. It really wasn't as expensive as it is now and my first flat was a 2 bedroom that we paid just £650 a month for, when I left London that flat was renting for £1400 a month.

Renting is probably one of the most expensive things you'll ever do but I felt it was worth every penny. I lived in three different rental homes and I've had a wide range of experiences. My first flat was lovely, a fully fitted kitchen, a compact but nice bathroom, two decent sized bathrooms and only on the first floor but we moved out to save up for our wedding and moved back in with my parents for a year.

After the wedding we ventured back out to a one bedroom flat on the same estate as our first. Prices had risen considerably in the year we had out and we were paying £750 a month for a 1 bedroom top floor flat. It was hideous when we moved in as the old occupants smoked inside, had pets and didn't really look after it at all. We even had a sliding door on the bathroom, no double glazing and a water tank that constantly dripped and kept us up at night. We didn't even last 6 months and made an agreement with our landlord that as long as we could get someone to move in, he'd end our contract with no fees or issues. Thankfully we managed to find someone and we moved!

Top Tips For Renting*

Our last rental was probably the best and the worst of them all. It was above an empty shop, kind of. The kitchen, dining room and entrance were round the back on the ground floor, then there was a set of stairs up to one bedroom and a bathroom, four stairs that led to the second bedroom and our living room (which was HUGE) and two more flights of stairs that led to our third bedroom. It had no double glazing, no central heating, no parking and the entrance was down some creepy little alley but I utterly adored it. It got made into SIX flats once we left, even though it was always cold and we had mammoth electricity bills I still remember it fondly! We paid £850 a month for it as it had so many issues and came with nothing, not even an oven or fridge.

One of the best tips I can advise anyone is write an inventory. It's best to do this with the estate agent or landlord the day you move in but if not, do one and send a copy to whoever needs one. This is your proof that the property was in the condition you said it was in. Getting your deposit back at the end of a tenancy doesn't have to be a difficult thing if you can prove that stain/mark/broken sink was already there.

Always do your research. Is it worth the cash they are asking? If you went 10/15 minutes further away could you get more property for your money? It's amazing how a mere mile can push the price up, so always make sure you've looked properly and not just fallen head over heels.

This probably sounds stupid but make sure you can afford it. Don't forget most rental prices don't include utility bills, so on top of your rent you'll have electric, gas, water, phone line, council tax, TV licence, internet, food, mobile phone, travel.... it soon adds up! Don't forget the deposit or letting agent fees and moving costs too!

It's another unexpected expense but don't forget your deposit and letting agent fees. You usually need at least 3 months rent as a deposit which goes into a special account and you have to pay letting agent fees. These fees are to credit check you and do the admin to get you in. You'll also be expected to pay these every time you renew your tenancy agreement and they vary from agent to agent. You can read more about it on my post - Can You Afford To Rent?

It's always been a bit of a dream of mine to have a rental flat and it's something that I'm working towards. I understand that it comes with it's own range of ups and downs and rules and regulations. Like having special Landlord insurance from a company like to ensure if the worse was to happen, the money, time and effort I put into my property would be protected! I'd love to be able to have a property to rent out until my little dude is old enough and then he'd be able to have a step up onto the property ladder, as I know only too well just how hard it is to buy your own place!

Do you have any top renting tips?

Until next time,


1 comment

  1. We rented for a couple of years before buying. These are great tips, one or two I wished I'd known when we first rented haha!


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