Renting a property is a big and complex decision and not one we take lightly here at Varcity Living! We understand that for anyone renting for the first-time the process can be a little overwhelming. For this reason we’re letting you in on some of the biggest mistakes that renters can make so you don’t make them yourself.
Read on to find out what things you should definitely be avoiding when it comes to a happy renting experience . . .
Mistake 1: Not minding the rules
There are certain stipulations laid out in the contract but there may be extra rules that you’ll need to comply with. This could be something like who is responsible for maintaining a certain area of the property – such as shared communal spaces – or whether or not pets are allowed in your new accommodation. Be sure to get permission from your landlord if you would like to make any changes to the property or if you’re not clear. You may find that landlords that have specified no pets allowed in the lease are actually fine with smaller animals in their property. Just ask first!
Mistake 2: Not paying attention to the contract
Your contract is a legal document so we would recommend you read this carefully before signing. Once signed you will be liable for paying the agreed rent, deposits and any other fees, so make sure you know exactly what you’re signing up for before putting your name on the dotted line! The contract will also contain information on your move-in and out dates, what your payments will be and what that includes, so make sure you read it closely.
Mistake 3: Not taking photographs
The landlord or letting agent will have a list of existing damages in the property, if any. It’s important you notify them of any further things you find when you first move into the property, but make sure you take photographs in case they don’t amend their list. You don’t want to have to pay for marks or breakage that you didn’t cause!
Mistake 4: The lonely viewing
If you’re going to be letting a property with someone else, or even with a few other people, make sure everyone is able to attend viewings. It can be hard to organise a time when everyone is free to go to a viewing, but it really is worth the extra headache. This will ensure there’s no upset further down the line from disgruntled flatmates who feel like they were forced into a rental situation in a place they’d rather not live. For more information on how to have a successful viewing experience then see here.
Mistake 5: No viewing at all
We get it; time is money. If you just need somewhere to rest your head at night in comparative peace then you may want to just sign up for the first property you see online. However, pictures don’t always show the full picture, funnily enough, and we really don’t recommend that you choose this option. Always make sure you view a property first before signing up for it, as you’re likely to have to live there for at least six months.
Mistake 6: Ignoring property upkeep
Just because you’re renting a property doesn’t mean you’re not responsible for its upkeep. If your property comes with a garden then you’re probably responsible for its maintenance. Make sure you read your contract carefully to ensure you’re doing everything you’re supposed to during your tenancy.
Mistake 7: Not getting insurance
Accidents do happen and they can make your living situation incredibly difficult. However, what can make this all even harder is if you have no way of getting compensation, which is what happens when you don’t take out insurance. Your landlord will have insurance to cover the property itself but your belongings aren’t included in this. Make sure you take out some contents insurance that covers all your belongings for the entire time you live at that property.
Avoid these common mistakes and you’re bound to have a happy, problem-free, rental experience.