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chronyx

Moving Into Rented

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Early next year I'm looking to move out and get a basic flat. I wondered how realistic the chances are of negotiating rent lower, and would also welcome ANY advice that may be relevant.

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Really depends on where you are moving to and the demand for rented flats in that location. In London, I have never been able to negotiate the rent on a new place lower, although I always put in a lower offer to test the water! Worst case is, you put in a lower offer and someone else comes along and takes it before you can increase. You will get a better idea of the market once you start looking at places.

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True, it can't hurt to make an offer! I think I'll have to look out as far as Aldershot and Ash Vale

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I'm on my 2nd rental contract in London and have both times negotiated circa 10% off asking. Just offered below but with a mindset to walk away if not agreeable. We are above the market average which means not so much competition. There were at least 8 other options nearby all available and at ok prices.

My last rental was agreed in October and is 15% below the rental price I paid about 3 years ago for a roughly comparable flat in maida vale.

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I'm on my 2nd rental contract in London and have both times negotiated circa 10% off asking. Just offered below but with a mindset to walk away if not agreeable. We are above the market average which means not so much competition. There were at least 8 other options nearby all available and at ok prices.

My last rental was agreed in October and is 15% below the rental price I paid about 3 years ago for a roughly comparable flat in maida vale.

Understandably at the higher end. I know a couple who had a nightmare, not just finding something affordable but finding something still available by the time they got to view it!

Edited by renting til I die

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That's a pretty good discount for London! Is there a guide of things to watch out for? I'm serious, I probably know more about buying than I do about renting even though I don't own a house, just from reading this site.

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I switched to renting and it's been good. Key to ask is who the owner is, you want a long term professional btl holder not some kite flyer who can't sell his house because he's asking a ridiculous price and is 'forced to rent out' . I'm in a flat run by a company that owns 4000 properties and they are very good. Any issue and they fix it within days, no disturbance etc. Try and avoid paying fees, we moved in fee free. Some agents charge several hundreds.

It's normal to pay holding deposit to secure flat on offer acceptance. Deposit is always around 6 weeks. Break clause is less important then I first thought, if you're a good tenant and you have a long term owner then they are keen to keep you generally.

Contracts are pretty standard and rights pretty well defined (despite some horror stories). You don't need to consider structural issues when looking, just convenience points like do the appliances work,etc. Avoid renting from private persons if poss or at least get a sense of what type of owner they are (the type of agent they employ said something already) and slum Lords. The latter recognised by aggressive agents, high fees, pressure sales strategy, etc.

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If buying is about Location Location Location, then renting is about Landlord, Landlord Landlord

I'd try to find a good one directly before you go via agents, if you can. It's worth spending a few weeks looking.

I found my place 3 years ago in the paper version of Loot, and dealt directly with the landlady. She's a long term professional landlord, and a lovely person herself. Her and her family seem to own a few properties in the area, and they do everything properly.

There have been a few problems with the flat, mostly related to a leaky flat roof, but everything's always fixed quickly by the same local tradesmen. Because there's no agent, the rent is quite reasonable for London.

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A couple more tips.

Try to find out who is above and to the side of you. Last thing you want are screaming kids/laminate floor above you. One flat I rented had a six eastern europeans who liked to party above.

What the landlord/letting agent says about the previous tenants can you given an insight into your likely treatment. If they think they were scum of the earth, guess what they'll likely be saying about you later?

Check the place throughly - particularly for signs of vermin and insect infestation. Both are surprisingly common in London/South East. One flat I rented in had an oddly placed wardrobe on first viewing. No problem I thought I'll move that when I move in. Turned out it was covering up a rat hole which mice were still using to get into the flat. The same flat also had bed bugs. Look out for adequate ventilation - can windows actually be opened? patches of damp/mould?

Also for plug sockets. I know of friends who moved into a room in a shared house - only to find there were none in their room. Ditto TV/phone connection if those are important to you - or mobile signal inside the flat.

Also check how much council tax is. Even 1BR mice infested flats in the nastier parts of east London can attract surprisingly high levels of council tax.

Edited by StainlessSteelCat

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Great tips SSC, probably even more so when buying never mind renting!

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