Renting is becoming one of the most popular ways to live, with almost five million people now living in privately rented properties across the UK. However, while renting is more common than it has ever been, it's still important as a tenant that you make sure you get it right, and have a good experience overall.
Here, we look at a few top tips for finding the perfect UK rental property for you.
Getting to work
If you work in London, then chances are you won't also be living in the capital, or at least not in the centre of the city. For this reason, as a tenant, it's vital that you consider work when you are choosing somewhere to live. After all, there's no point in finding that ideal family home or bachelor pad, only to find later that your commute to work takes several hours each way.
For every house you view, make sure you ask the letting agent, or even just Google, what your options are in terms of transport. Whether it's the distance to the nearest Tube station, the regularity of buses or ease of access to the motorway, knowing how you will get to work each day is one of the most important aspects of choosing a home for any commuter.
While work is important, it's also vital that it's not everything. You don't want to be choosing to live somewhere that has good access to work, but doesn't tick any of the other boxes you might want it to in terms of lifestyle.
Remember, you've got to have fun in life, and wherever you choose to live will have a big part to play in this. Whether you are a fan of clubbing, someone who likes a good pub quiz, or just a lover of the high street, make sure that you strike that balance between being able to get to work, and having a good life away from the office that you can enjoy.
What do you prioritise?
Everyone prioritises different things from their rental home. For some people, just having somewhere to lay their head after a long day at the office will be enough, while for others, their rented accommodation has to feel like home. When you're looking for the perfect place to rent, don't settle; ask yourself what matters to you, and make sure anywhere you choose to live delivers what it is you're looking for.
Whether it's large bedrooms, a fancy kitchen, on-street parking or fast internet, the number of things you might be looking for from your home are endless, but it's vital that no matter what is important to you, you identify it early and make sure you prioritise this when you are viewing potential places to live.
Who to rent from
It's also important that you know who you should be renting a property from before you decide to sign up. The majority of rental properties in the UK these days are let by agents, and for this reason, chances are you will be dealing with an agent. However, there are some people who still rent with a private landlord separately.
For those who want a rental period where they just get left to do their own thing, landlords can be a good idea on their own. But for the majority, it's far better to rent from a letting agent, who will be able to deal with maintenance and repairs far quicker, letting you have an easier way of life.