Many of us start on our real estate journey by renting property, and this is indeed the best way to go if you would like to save money and don’t want to be tied down to a long-term commitment. There are those who choose to rent rather than buy property as well, and it’s a definite option for convenience and affordability. Plus, if you rent, you don’t have to worry about making changes to the property or dealing with significant repairs – this can all be taken care of by your landlord. But it also pays to choose the proper rental property for your needs, so here’s what you should really consider when selecting property for rent.
List down your non-negotiables – and set your budget
Before you begin looking for a flat or house for rent, you should first list down your non-negotiables. Think about what you want in the rental property, such as its size, the number of rooms, amenities such as a garage or garden, and more. Does the property need to have parking on-site? What about pets? A lot of people have pets, and if you do, then you need to find out if the property accepts pets. If you are taking your furniture, then you also need to make sure that it is not furnished.
When it comes to setting your budget, here’s the thing: the average cost of your rent should ideally be about 35% of your monthly income, but you also have to factor in other expenses such as electricity, gas, water, Internet and telephone lines, council taxes, and so on. Make sure you have enough money for other essentials, such as food and household goods and items, and funds for other regular expenses. When renting property, you will also have to settle a deposit, so remember to factor this in – nowadays, the average deposit would be about five weeks’ worth of the property’s monthly rental fee.
Choose a good agent
The next step would be to find and choose a good agent. It follows that you should choose an estate agent who has the proper knowledge about the area you are interested in, so it would be best if they reside in the area or at least have been an agent in the area for a number of years. Look for estate agents who have the right qualifications and are also accredited by various governing bodies and authorities. This means they will have the skill and experience that would help you in your search, and they follow good standards for the services they provide. For instance, if you are potentially looking for houses to rent in Chelmsford, then look for an agent in the area so they are well-versed with what’s available, how the area is developing, what amenities there are, and more.
Know what to look for
Once you have your list of properties to check out, it’s time to visit and assess each. But there are certain things you should be looking for as well, such as how safe the property is. Landlords, for example, are required by law to have annual gas safety checks, and it’s best to ask for the certificate for this. Check the appliances and electrical systems, and check for any signs of damp or leaks. Good luck, and happy house hunting!