5 mistakes new tenants make (and how to avoid them)

 5 mistakes new tenants make (and  how to avoid them)

You may think you know how to rent but London’s lettings market is fast-paced, competitive and can catch you off guard. Our guide to renting property will help you avoid making basic mistakes, especially if you’re new to renting.

Don’t let lax paperwork let you down

Before you go flat hunting, spend time getting your finances and paperwork in order - that is so that you can make a move as soon as you see a property you like. Some rental applications are delayed or derail because a document wasn’t provided, background checks weren’t passed or the tenant didn’t have enough money. Documents including wage slips, bank statements, utility bills (not mobile phone), photo ID (passport or driving license) should be at hand, and you should have the funds to pay a security deposit and usually one month’s rent in advance. If you need to know the full list of what’s required, message us on Facebook or call the lettings team.

Avoid being scammed

If that flat to rent on Gumtree or Facebook sounds too good to be true, it probably is. To lessen your chance of being ripped off or renting a sub standard property, always use a reputable High Street letting agent. Check they will protect your deposit in a Government-endorsed scheme and that they belong to a professional organisation, such as ARLA Propertymark and The Property Ombudsman. Happily, Gordon & Co ticks all these lettings boxes.

Relying on just Rightmove may leave you disappointed

Did you know many people renting property in London find their flat or house without searching an online portal? As there are more renters than properties available, letting agents including Gordon & Co hold waiting lists and we offer new rental properties to these people first. Get yourself on our VIP list and in line for first refusal by registering with your local Gordon & Co office.

Be budget aware or risk financial shock

Starting a rental journey remains cheaper than buying a property - there’s no stamp duty to pay and the deposit is considerably less. For now, however, there are still fees applicable to tenants but agents are obliged to be transparent about what they charge - our fees are clearly outlined here. Don’t forget to factor in contents insurance, the cost of running a property (utility bills, council tax, TV license etc), wifi/TV bills and the cost of any furniture you may need.

You can’t just click your fingers

Living in a let property is not like living in a hotel. You’ve probably guessed there’s no room service or maid but don’t expect your landlord or property manager to come running when the windows need cleaning. We won’t bore you with the minute details of Section 11 of the Landlord & Tenant Act 1985 but a tenant is expected to change a light bulb, replace a fuse and unblock a sink. If you’re unsure of what your responsibilities will be, Tweet us or drop in to your nearest Gordon & Co office.