It’s easy to get carried away and just choose the first flat you like and can afford, only to realise you should have found out more information about it before you signed the contract and moved in. There are things you are likely to forget or not even think about when viewing a rental property, but are actually essential.
- It is a good idea to ask your landlord who your neighbours are, if they are a family, quiet, noisy or if they have pets. You can also try to find out if they have any problems with other tenants.
- Ask if the area is well lit at night, if it is safe to walk alone or if there are bars nearby that create noise at late hours. It helps if it is well lit, but if you have poor quality blinds, it can ruin your sleep.
- During viewing, some furniture and appliance may be displayed, but there’s a chance that not everything is included when you rent. Clarify this with the landlord, so you’ll know what you need to prepare when you move in. It also helps to ask if you can replace some of these furnishings with your own.
- Ask if it is okay to paint walls, change the decor, hang pictures or erect shelves. Some landlords do not allow redecorating but it is always worth asking.
- Water and heating. Check if heating is adequate, if radiators are working fine or what type of boiler the house has. Ask if the windows have double-glazing because they are more efficient than traditional windows. Check if the shower water pressure is strong.
- Parking and transport. Ask about parking space if you are driving or if you need to get a permit for it. If you commute, enquire about convenient means of transport.
- Broken items. When you visit the property, carefully check all items to see if there is any damage. Ask the owner about it so the necessary repair or replacement will be done before you move in. Take a photo or video of the damaged items in case they aren’t repaired when it’s time to move.
- If you think you have more items than the home can store, ask your landlord if you can put up rails or shelves or if there are storage solutions he can suggest.
- Agree on the allowed Internet or phone service prior to moving in so that there will be no problems.
- Additional fees. Steer clear of confusion and inconvenience by being upfront about other fees such as deposit, letting agent fees, tax band and others.
If you are looking for flats to rent in Colchester, viewing is the only way to get a feel of the property you might be renting. Before going to the property, make a list of criteria and see if the flat is a good match that will make you happy. Do not forget to list down the questions to ask, so you won’t miss anything.