With the number of tenants steadily on the rise due to the difficulty with getting onto the property ladder and the constantly increasing house prices, we’ve put together a handy little guide to help happy tenants:
Before Your Tenancy
- Decide what exactly what it is you want from your property. Are you looking for a short term tenancy while you save up for a mortgage? Do you wish to live closer to work in order to reduce your commuting time? Or are you looking for a place to grow into with your young family?
- Determine whether you will require a garden, a car parking space or a spare bedroom? You reduce your rental payments by putting some things into storage for a few months and signing a tenancy for a smaller property, for example…
- Living close to parks, local amenities and on good transport links will be something to consider, especially if you could save some money by walking or cycling to work. If you’re planning on starting a family, choosing a home close to a good school will no doubt be a priority so you should check out The Good Schools Guide.
- With any contract, you should be reading the small print on your tenancy agreement and asking the letting agent or landlord to clarify any points or answer any questions you may have. – always ask questions!
During Your Tenancy
- On the day you move in, remember to complete the inventory provided by your landlord or the agent. Taking photos (or a video) of any marks or damage previously undisclosed will ensure that you have evidence when it comes to the receiving your full deposit back at the end of your tenancy.
- Get on Top of the Bills – If possible setting up a direct debit so that all of your bills come out of your bank account on the same day (ideally payday), will mean that you never miss a payment and budgeting for the rest of the month should become slightly more achievable.
- Obey the Rules and Keep in Touch With Your Landlord – If your tenancy explicitly states ‘no pets’ but you’re longing for the joy of a furry friend, make sure you contact your landlord BEFORE you decide to buy one.
- Just because your name isn’t on the mortgage, doesn’t mean that you can’t make the rental property feel like home. From choosing colourful cushions and throws to brightening the room with a gorgeous bunch of flowers, there are lots of ways you can transform the space into your own.
Ending Your Tenancy
- When you do decide to move home make sure to give your landlord the required notice period as stated in your contact. If on the other hand, you would like to stay in the property longer than the fixed period which your initial tenancy agreement states, then make sure you speak to your landlord about a new agreement for another fixed period.
- Naturally, you should leave your property in the exact same standard as when you found it on the first day of your tenancy. Getting down on your hands and knees to scrub the oven and deep clean the carpets will all be worth it when you receive your full deposit back! Win, win win!