First Steps / Things to Do Before Starting your Search
Ok, so you’re ready to find your rental property. Before we begin searching, you’ll need to make a few decisions and get a couple of things in order.
Price range. When you’ve looked at your budget and evaluated what rent you can afford, either yourself or as a group moving in together, convert your budget into both a weekly and monthly range. Most property portals will allow you to search properties by price per week or per month, yet it’s good to know straight away what your budget is for each period. Multiply a weekly budget by 4.33 to get your monthly budget. Divide a monthly budget by 4.33 to give you the equivalent weekly budget.
Once you have decided your budget, adjust it into a ‘range’ by adding 5% and taking 5% away. So if you’re budget is £1,000 per month, your range would be £950 to £1,050 a month.
It’s good to give Letting Agents a range so that they know how far you can stretch. Giving them a band rather than one price focuses their mind better. The reason for giving a slightly higher top end than you can afford is that you can often negotiate upto 5% off rents, any more is generally difficult. So those rentals just above your price range could be worth making a lower offer on.
Neighbourhoods. By now you will be familiar with our neighbourhood area guides. While you are renting remember you can try out a new area, live somewhere more fun for a year or so (even though you might not want to live their permanently), or try out a different style of property than you would buy. Do see our area guide advice to ensure you are moving somewhere with the right qualities for you.
Rental Length. Using our guide to decide which type of rental let you should go for.
Furnishings. Decide now if you will look for an unfurnished or furnished property and if it’s unfurnished ensure you have enough money to buy new furniture. Perhaps look up furniture on IKEA to calculate what you may need – remember to add delivery costs and account for everything from kitchen utensils and crockery to duvets, pillows and bath towels.