Choosing a rental property

Choosing a rental property: what should you be paying attention to?

In this report you’ll get to discover the criteria and procedures to follow to guide you in choosing your future accommodation. Also included are some questions you should be asking the landlord so that the inventory of fixtures of the accommodation is clearly laid out and defined. Are you in the market to rent a property in the UK, but don’t know where to start? Click on this link to get a proper overview as to how to go about it!

A major step

Once you have made your pre-selection, the next step would be to visit the desired accommodation. This is of course a major step in the process of selecting the right accommodation for you..

Unless you are familiar with the real estate market or a person who has this skill is holding your hand, only a visit to several similar specced units (studio, one-bedroom apartment, etc.) would enable you to confidently and objectively assess their respective rental values. You shouldn’t dive in on the first apartment you visit, unless you are completely sure of yourself and don't get distracted or confused by visiting one or more alternative residences..

Given the housing shortage in most areas, the rules of the real estate market are mainly determined by landlords. There are therefore major differences in quality and price between the various rental properties on olfer. In addition, during the course of each visit, our recommendation is that you study the property from all the various angles. As such, you will establish a comparative set of criteria making it possible to recall and compare the characteristics of the various locations selected.

The housing situation and its practicalities

Some criteria to consider:

Structural condition of the premises

Overall impression

General status of the paint on the ceilings, the walls,frames and wallpaper. Are there any moisture stains on the ceilings or walls? How have these come about?

Heating and hot water

Hot water,:how is it handled? An individual gas boiler is ideal, but there are other systems available such as electric boilers. Has the facility been maintained?

Heating: is the supply gas, oil or electricity (electricity is significantly more expensive and an important part of a budget) Ideally, an individual boiler connected to a control system (general thermostat with time control) should be used. Has the boiler been properly maintained?

Whether for heating or for the supply of hot water, are the installations correctly connected and appropriately maintained?

In addition, is there adequate thermal insulation and are the doors and window frames in good order,and are they draught resistant? Whether or not there are double-glazed windows is an important factor.

Are there individual gas and electric meters or are they common for several tenants? In this case, how are usage breakdowns calculated?

The kitchen

Is the kitchen located close to the living rooms, and is there sufficient ventilation (via a hood or window)?

Are there any appliances on-site (hob, oven, fridge, etc.)? If they are included in the rent, this can lead to some quite useful savings.

If the kitchen is shared between multiple tenants, it would be crucial to meet with them and discuss and understand the arrangements. Are community meals part of the programme or does everyone manage their individual needs; and if so, what are their schedules?

The sanitary facilities

The toilets

Are they located in or outside the dwelling? For use by only one or multiple tenants?

The bathroom

Does it house a bath or a shower? Is it allocated for a single tenant or is it available for multiple tenants? Is the bathroom well ventilated?

The condition of the sanitary facilities

Are the fittings and water drainage systems maintained in good working order (ease of use, lack of leaks, etc.)

The acoustics

The housing situation. Streets are busier on weekdays. Double glazing provides better insulation from noise than single glazing (this is especially important in the case of street - facing bedrooms). Is a school or kindergarden located in the neighbourhood? Regarding the premises acoustic insulation in relation to neighbouring dwellings, if you are by nature a calm person, you will not appreciate the potential disturbance caused by noisy neighbours, so it is worth enquiring about them. On the other hand, if you are a night owl and like staying up late at night, listening to music and regularly entertaining, it would be preferable that the partitions between your home and those of your neighbours be suitably noise resistant.

The Electrical Installation

Are there sufficient electrical outlets? Are they conveniently located? Does the electrical system provide enough power and capacity for your use (e.g. washing machine, fridge, oven and toaster, etc using the same electrical outlet)? Are there individual meters for electricity or is the same meter used for several tenants? In which case, how are the calculations made?

Well…

If the accommodation is suitable and appropriate for you, if it meets your expectations and needs, all you need to do is to communicate your agreement to the owner. This agreement is generally executed by signing a tenancy agreement document which lays out the tenant's option on the rented property. This signed written agreement is crucial because, on the one hand, the owner will not be able to rent his property to someone else and, on the other hand, the tenant will not be able to withdraw. Failure by one party to comply with the agreement would require it to pay compensation to the other party. In general terms, the final lease agreement document should be signed as soon as possible.