What they don’t tell you about renting

Hello you lovely lot!

Today I wanted to discuss renting and my experience with it! I have been living in London for over a year now and, though I certainly would not call myself a pro, I have learned a few things along the way that I thought I would share with you.

1. It sometimes costs more than you think

Perhaps this is my naivety, but before renting I always thought that a months rent was the deposit… well this isn’t always the case. The deposit is actually usually 6 weeks worth of rent, which, if you’re working with savings, can throw a bit of a curve ball.

On top of this, some places will require you to pay one months rent upfront, charge administration fees (usually around £200, if applicable) and even referencing fees (usually under £100, if applicable)

Top tip: Always check this with the agent before signing anything as these stats all add up!

2. Bills vary from rental to rental

Bills are the pants part of being an adult and what bills you pay can vary depending on the situation. Some landlords cover certain bills, so it’s always important to check with the agent or landlord!

Bills to consider and enquire about before securing a rental include:

  • Gas and/or electricity
  • Water bills
  • Council tax
  • Service charge (only for some properties),
  • TV license (if you plan on watching live TV),
  • Landline phone bill
  • Contents insurance
  • Digital TV or satellite TV subscriptions
  • Broadband bill

3. Always check what comes with the rental

This is one we forgot to do for our current flat (whoops) and now we have boxes full of random things, such as kettles, bedside lamps, cutlery, irons (the flat supplied 3 of those!), bedding and loads of other bits, stored above kitchen cupboards and wardrobes. We already had these things from our previous flat so we needed to find them a new home!

You may wish to check whether the following is included:

  • Kettle
  • Toaster
  • Microwave
  • Fridge
  • Freezer
  • Oven
  • Washing machine
  • Dishwasher

4. Make sure to take lots of pictures/videos and check details against the inventory

I like to think of that hefty deposit that you pay as a sort of savings pot because you hope to get it all back! But some agencies/landlords can be really sneaky and try and pin damage (from previous tenants) on you. This can cause all sorts of problems so taking pictures and checking that the inventory is accurate can avoid any predicaments in the future!

Top tip: Don’t be afraid to disagree with an agent/landlord if you don’t think that damage is your fault at the end of the tenancy! That deposit is your hard earned money and wear and tear is not the same as damage. Keeping your cool and querying things with agents at the end of the tenancy is absolutely fine!

5. Moving can actually be super stressful

This is something that I learned the hard way. I thought moving out with my boyfriend would be this entirely fun experience but actually the day is exhausting! That being said, it was fun too!

Top tip: Label every box with the room it needs to go into, this way, even if it’s chaos, it’s organised chaos! Plus, you don’t have as many people asking you questions as the boxes give instructions for you!

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