A Comprehensive Guide To Getting The Best Deal For The First Time Renter

Written by Posted On Friday, 04 October 2019 02:38

Currently, the housing market has made renting a property the more common options for securing living arrangements. Current housing prices are way above most individuals wages, which makes buying a property difficult, and renting is often the goto option. 

Renting a property offers many benefits, top on the list is that it offers flexibility (you can easily move to a new neighbourhood or downsize). However, even though renting gives you greater flexibility as opposed to owning a property, finding the right property still requires money, time and careful thought. 

This is why we have compiled this list of tips to help you rent your first apartment or home like a pro. 

1. Draw up a budget 
Whether you are buying or renting, getting your own space is a major financial step. To begin, do not sign a lease on a place that costs over 30% of your monthly income. If you can get a place for less than that, the better. You want to be able to enjoy your new apartment long-term and it will be hard if you are worried about making the rent. 

2. Decide on the location 
The next step after you've drawn up your budget is to decide where you would like to live. This should be easy to do as your budget will restrict your search to the areas you can afford. You can start by searching online for listing or decide if you would like to engage the services of an agent in finding your apartment. 

Please note that although estate agent often has neighbourhood expertise and market knowledge, they charge fees that may not be within your budget. In addition, depending on where you intend to live, finding an apartment without the help of an estate agent may be difficult and time-consuming. 

Pro tip: try to get an apartment that is close to where you work, to make your commutes inexpensive and short. 

3. Draw up a list of preferred amenities 
This will vary depending on your budget however, it is a smart idea to create an amenities checklist, to ensure that your new apartment can cater to your needs. Amenities should guide the apartments you consider. For example, if you own a dog, you should be looking to rent an apartment in a pet-friendly 

building. Some other amenities to also look out for include; central laundry, indoor parking and so on. 

However, be patient, realistic and understand that you may not get everything on your list. 

4. Do not forget to check out the neighbourhood 
A great apartment in a bad neighbourhood would be an absolute no-no. Therefore, as a first-time renter, you should observe the neighbourhood when viewing a potential apartment. Is it clean? Are there individuals who hang around gambling or drinking? Can you raise a family in such a neighbourhood?

  • If you notice red flags, you should think twice about renting an apartment in such a neighbourhood, even if the price is low. Checking out the neighbourhood will paint a clear picture of what to expect when you move in. 
    If you are interested in buyer rather than renting, be sure to check out the first-time buyer tips by The House Shop

 What do letting agents and landlords look out for in renters? 


To ascertain that you are would be a reliable tenant that can afford to pay rent, letting agents and landlords usually check the following:

Guarantors: you may be required to provide a guarantor if your landlord/letting agent is concerned about your ability to make rent on time. They would most probably also run a credit check on your guarantor as well. 

References: it is not uncommon for your potential landlord to request references from your previous or current landlord as well as your employer. This is done to check if you are trustworthy and would be a reliable tenant. 

Financial checks: you may be asked to provide an employment contract or letter from your employer, proof of benefit entitlements or bank statements. 

Rights to rent immigration checks: letting agents and landlords are required by law to check the immigration status of adult occupiers before they release their property. To pass this check, you would need a valid residence permit or passport. If you do not have a passport, you would have to provide alternative documentation as requested. 

Ready, set, move!

Hooray, you've rented your first apartments! Now, it's time to get ready to move. Check-in with your property manager to settle on a move-in date 

Pro tip: set goals for yourself each week leading up to the big day, so you stay on track.

Rate this item
(0 votes)

Agent Resource

Limited time offer - 50% off - click here

Realty Times

From buying and selling advice for consumers to money-making tips for Agents, our content, updated daily, has made Realty Times® a must-read, and see, for anyone involved in Real Estate.