Renting in London can be a bit of a daunting experience. You’ve heard rumours about the housing prices and thought that they couldn’t possibly be true. To find that, well… they’re even worse! Renting and finding great property in London is either a huge stroke of luck or a stroke of genius and research on your behalf. Finding property for sale in London can be a whole other blog post, which will end up being a lot more on how to get onto the property ladder, especially if you’re a young professional!
Finding The Right Place
Online browsing sites such as Zoopla or Right Move are key into helping you define your budget and criteria for property. You’ll be able to see that by moving just a few stops down the tube line your rent will decrease by a few hundred pounds. This is especially true if you’re looking at living in Z1/2, but bite the bullet and have a look at property in Z3/4.
Offline, a real estate agent will be able to help you find places that fit your budget, criteria and will be able to show you around several properties in one area on one given day. I always give a real estate agent a call if I know I like a particular area that they work in, I let them know my tastes, budget and things I like in property but don’t necessarily need just in case they have a hidden gem. Be firm in what you want and with your budget, because some will try and swing you property that’s an extra £50-100 per month and that’ll mean you could end up paying over a grand more in total than you wanted to per year!
Ask a Lot of Questions
I felt kind of embarrassed with how many questions I asked the Residents Manager at mine and Jay’s current building when we first came to view. A lot of them were more along the serious lines; Do we need a guarantor? What requirements do renters need to check off? And some on the more personal side; How many dogs can I have? But questions are important and they prevent and nasty surprises or mistakes happening way down the line. When Jay and I went to do background checks for the property we knew exactly what we needed to do and when down the road which meant that we hit no delays, set backs or disappointments.
People tend to have or hear horror stories about landlords or residents managers. In most cases you won’t ever meet your landlord face to face. But if you do, make sure you ask questions and make sure you don’t get played like a fool.
Interior Designing Your Home
Luckily living in London means there are tonnes of businesses, start-ups, and decade’s old companies etc to help you with absolutely everything you could ever need. You’ll find people to do the jobs you don’t want to do around your house and when it comes to interior designing you’re spoilt for choice on what companies to opt for. If you’re renting in the city center you’ll be looking at modern builds that have urban architecture and design. If you want a cute homely cottage vibe you definitely won’t be finding that Zones 1-2 and you’ll have to venture a little further out.
Where you choose to rent will depend a lot upon your own personal tastes and style. Most people when moving to London imagine themselves in a sleek and modern city-style apartment, but there are also options for people who love homes and want to live in a house share. You just have to know what you want and be very ruthless in finding it!
Moving onto Construction
In order to get the best possible deal for your money in London, you may have to make some sacrifices in terms of how beaten up your garden looks. If you’re a DIY’er or love a good project then renting or buying a property that requires construction jobs shouldn’t be out of the question. I’ve seen my dad turn some really messy houses into someplace absolutely beautiful with a few savvy investments and a fair few trips to IKEA and B&Q. If you’re really not into DIY, but really like a place even though it needs work finding construction companies and home improvement companies in London that can take that job on is a good idea. Especially if you’re buying because any improvement that go into a home will always help its re-selling fee!
All property requires some work, so don’t go in expecting everything to be perfect as you’ll most likely be disappointed! Jay and I currently rent a lovely apartment in a new build which you’d expect to not have that many issues what with everything being so new. but that isn’t the case!
This is one of my co-residents, Bear. We charge him rent in the form of kisses.
Renting in London can seem daunting and an often impossible task, but it doesn’t have to be. Would you guys like to see a post on how I saved to make my deposit? Or maybe how to get property in London on a budget? I’d love to know what you’d like to see on the blog!
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