Running around seeing half a dozen rentals a day at breakfast, lunch and dinner? Can’t remember which place had the nice parking space? How much was the council tax on that one near the station? In flat-hunting, as in serial dating, your options inevitably begin to blur together after a while.
Luckily for you distraught prospective tenants, we’ve put together this handy checklist, which you can print out and tick off as you visit each property, to help you make the right choice when you sit down and look over the options later on.
- How much are rent, council tax, and bills? Can you afford to live here without taking out a Cash Lady loan every month?
- Who is the agent, and what are their fees? Be sure to Google them; Yelp reviews can be very handy when it comes to flagging up agents from hell.
- What’s the wifi and phone signal like? You don’t want to become known among your new neighbours as that weirdo who stands at the bottom of their garden, waving their Blackberry in the air.
- Transport links and travel time? Because paying rent is a lot trickier once you’ve been sacked for constantly being late.
- Nearest shops? Every neighbourhood needs a decent corner shop and greasy spoon cafe. Your future, hungover self will thank you on Sunday mornings.
- Neighbour profile? ‘Invisible’ is best, although ‘friendly’ also works. As long as they don’t give you a ‘Sutcliffe’ vibe.
- And last but not least: Parking? Be sure to get a solid answer on this one! Letting agents might say it’s “fine” to park on the street, and fail to mention that you actually need to apply to the council for a permit. Good luck getting that clamp off your wheel!