Ten questions to ask your landlord before you move in

Mar 14, 2023
Whether you’ve rented before, or just getting onto the property ladder or looking for your next student home, here are some important questions to ask your landlord before renting.
WHEN IS THE RENT DUE? This question is both practical and important as it will help you prepare your finances and make the payment on time.
ARE BILLS INCLUDED IN THE RENT? Bills aren’t always overseen by landlords and included in the rent, so if this isn’t clear, ask if bills are included or if you’ll need to organise these payments yourself.
If bills are included in the rental price, this can streamline your outgoings but if you’ll need to set up bill payments yourself, its best to get this organised ASAP. Ask for an estimate of what monthly bills might cost based on the home and utility usage of previous tenants. This will allow you to agree how bills should be split if you’re moving in with others.
HOW MUCH IS THE DEPOSIT? This is key to making sure you’ve got your ducks in a row and will lead into asking how your deposit will be protected by your landlord, before beginning your tenancy.
HOW LONG IS THE RENTAL CONTRACT? As well as making sure you know the duration of the tenancy agreement, it’s also worth understanding the process if you wanted to renew the contract or move out before the end of the agreement.
HOW ENERGY EFFICIENT IS THE PROPERTY? The more energy efficient, the more likely you are to save on your bills every month. The EPC (Energy Performance Certificate) rating will give you a good understanding but there’s always the possibility that your landlord could make improvements.
CAN I RENT WITH A PET? The policy on pets varies between, so if you have a pet or are considering welcoming a new furry friend into your home, be sure to ask if pets are allowed to avoid any potential issues.
IS THERE DESIGNATED PARKING AND WHAT IS THE COST? If your property doesn’t have a driveway or a residents car park, there might be space nearby, but ask about restrictions and/or permits.
IS IT FURNISHED OR UNFURNISHED? This might seem like a silly question, right? If you go to view a property and it’s fully furnished, it would be fair to assume you’ll be getting the furniture, but this isn’t always the case. Get into the detail of what is included and what isn't. Each option has its benefits, but if you have a preference share this with your letting agent up front.
If you have your own furniture that you’d like to bring into a home that’s already fully furnished, ask the landlord whether some of the furniture that came with the property can be put into storage during your tenancy. A good idea so you can come to an agreement that works for you both.
WHAT'S INCLUDED IN THE INVENTORY? Once you know how much furniture comes with the property, ask for a full inventory of what will be provided by the landlord. Is there a dishwasher, washing machine and drier? What about smaller appliances such as a kettle, iron and broom?
Having a copy of the full inventory will also mean you can account for any supplied items and make sure everything is given back when you move out.
ARE THERE RESTRICTIONS ON REDECORATING? We all want to put our own stamp on our home but there might be restrictions on what you can and can’t do. Make sure you’re on the same page and ask for the do’s and don’ts as far as decorating is concerned. For example, can you paint and hang things on the wall?
You can personalise your new space without disrespecting the conditions of your agreement. For example, handy hanging strips are a great option for displaying things on the wall if you’re unable to use nails or drills. Just ensure they can be removed without marking the surface. Soft furnishings and accessories bring a lot of personality and are a great way of switching things up between seasons and preferences.
Source: OnTheMarket.
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