Having a place to call your own is something everyone dreams about, whether that be purchasing or renting. But when it comes to actually taking those steps it can be quite daunting and unfamiliar. With a huge variety of properties and agents to choose from, knowing the process can certainly help put your mind at ease. This is the 20 steps to securing your rental home …
Your Budget – Being able to understand what you can afford each month on rent alone is the perfect starting block, as going forward you would have to ensure you can keep up with your monthly rental repayments.
Location Location Location – Somewhere quiet? The City Centre? Near to family or work? Each location offers unique benefits and varies in price, so finding which area suits your needs should be of high importance.
Bedrooms – What is the minimum & maximum amount of bedrooms you are looking for?
Size – Do you have a minimum size you are looking for?
Furnished or unfurnished? – If you have your own furniture you would need to ensure that any property you find can come unfurnished and vice versa.
When do you want to move? – understanding when you are able to start a contract is important as you don’t want to be looking too early in advance. We advise to start searching for your new home 6-8 weeks prior to your ideal contract start date.
Time to start looking – Rightmove, OnTheMarket & Zoopla. These are the three main property search portals where you can find suitable properties matching your criteria.
Make a shortlist – There will be a lot of properties to choose from, therefore we always advice to make a shortlist of your top 5 properties that match each of your requirements.
Getting in Touch – After finding properties that catch your eye, the next step would be to get in touch with the agent. Their details are found on the advert and you have a choice of calling them directly or sending them an email enquiry. If you email them, you should expect the hear back within 24 hours.
Schedule Your Viewing – Arrange with the Estate Agent a suitable time and date for yourself to view the property. The rental market is very fast paced and we therefore always advise viewing at your earliest convenience to avoid losing out on the property.
On the Viewing – When you are on the viewing, take a good look around and take your time. Ask as many questions as you can think of, as the more you know the more you can put your mind at ease moving forward.
Is it the one?! Decide whether the property is the one for you.
Submit an offer – Speak to the agent who showed you the property and advise them you wish to proceed and submit your offer. Within your offer, you want to include the monthly rental price, contract start date, length of contract and any conditions you may have (professional clean, removal of any items etc).
Offer Acceptance – The agent will then formally submit your offer to the landlord and revert with their comments. This usually takes between 24-48 hours.
Holding Deposit Transfer – Once the terms of your offer have been accepted, the agent will ask you to transfer a two-week holding deposit to show you are committed to the property and in turn will reserve the flat, withdraw it from the market and cancel all further viewings that are booked in.
References – Once a holding deposit has cleared in the agent’s client account, they will then commence with references. We advise gathering these documents whilst the agent is speaking to the landlord as it can help speed up the process and put you one step ahead. References usually include – passport, three months’ bank statements, three months’ pay slips, work reference/contract & previous landlord reference (if applicable).
Remainder of the monies – You have just received the great news that you have passed the reference checks – whoop! The agent will then request you transfer the remainder of the monies to them which include one month’s rent in advance, a further four-week security deposit and any additional administration costs.
Inventory Check In – An inventory clerk will be scheduled to go to the property & note down the condition prior to occupation. Come the end of your tenancy, a check out clerk will be scheduled to ensure the flat is given back in the same condition it is given to you. This document is vital as it can potentially save you hundreds or thousands of pounds should there be any disputes.
Move in day – The day has finally arrived!! Time to put your feet up, kettle on and enjoy your new home!