Find Your Dream Home: Tips for Successful Flat Hunting

Moving to a new flat can be a life-changing decision.

Not to mention that it involves a significant amount of time, money, and effort, so it can be a daunting task, especially if you’re a first-time renter or unfamiliar with the local real estate market.

So, it’s essential to approach the flat-hunting process with a clear understanding of your needs and expectations and knowledge of the local market and current trends. Take your time and research to ensure you find the right flat that meets your requirements and fits your budget. 

Read on to find some helpful tips and guidelines to ensure you find your dream home.

Prioritising while flat hunting

If you’re in the process of flat hunting, you know how challenging it can be to find the perfect new home. You want to find a place that fits your budget, is conveniently located, and offers all the amenities you need.

However, with so many factors to consider, it’s easy to become overwhelmed and decide based solely on superficial features. That’s why it’s crucial to organise and prioritise your needs and do thorough research at the beginning.

Hire a professional end of lease cleaning company

Moving out of your flat can be exhausting and time-consuming, and probably the last thing you want to worry about is cleaning the property before you leave. That’s where an end of lease cleaning company can come in handy.

So, before packing up your belongings and searching for a new flat, consider planning and arranging the end of lease cleaning. This will ensure that you meet all the requirements of your lease agreement and get your bond back in full. 

With the cleaning taken care of, you can focus on the more essential aspects of your move, such as finding your new dream home.

Make a list of priorities

To make the best decision when choosing a rental property, it is wise to prioritise your needs and wants. Do this by making a list of what works for you and really fits your lifestyle and preferences.

For example, if the location is one of your priorities when choosing a rental property, you’ll want to ensure you’re renting in an area that suits you.

Or is it all very well saying yes to a place because of the gorgeous master bedroom when you’re sitting in traffic for an hour and a half every morning and night?

Decide which factors are important to you and consider all aspects.

Location

This is one of the most important factors when looking for a new flat. You want to choose a location that is convenient for your daily routine. 

This might include being close to public transportation, grocery stores, restaurants, and other amenities.

Consider the distance to your workplace and whether the location offers easy access to major highways or main roads.

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Safety

Your safety and security are of utmost importance when choosing a flat.

Ensure the property is in a safe neighbourhood, free from crime and theft. Check the surrounding area for street lighting, CCTV cameras, and other security measures.

Also, ensure the building has proper security features, such as locked entrances and security personnel.

Size and layout

The size and layout of a flat can make a big difference in your comfort and overall satisfaction with your living space.

You should consider the number of bedrooms, bathrooms, and the property’s square footage. Do you need a large kitchen or living area for entertaining?

Think about how much space you need for storage and whether the layout will work for your lifestyle.

Amenities and services

Another factor to consider is the amenities and services offered at the property.

Does the building have a fitness centre or pool? Is there on-site laundry or dry cleaning? Is there a concierge service or package receiving area?

Take note of any additional services that may be important to you.

Transportation and parking

Another crucial factor to consider when flat hunting is transportation and parking.

Do you need to rely on public transportation or have a car needing parking space? If you need public transportation, ensure the flat is near a bus stop or train station. Check the schedules and routes to ensure they will work for you.

If you have a car, ask the landlord about parking arrangements. Is there a dedicated parking spot for the flat, or is street parking the only option? If the latter is the only option, check if there are any restrictions, such as resident permits or parking meters.

Condition of the property

When viewing a flat, take note of the overall condition of the property. Has it been renovated recently

Look for signs of damage or neglect, such as cracks in the walls, peeling paint, or leaks. Take note of any unpleasant smells, such as mould or mildew. Ensure all appliances are in good working condition and the heating and cooling systems function correctly.

Cost

Of course, the cost is a significant factor when flat hunting.

Consider your budget and make sure the property fits within it. Remember that the flat’s cost may not be the only expense. You may also need to pay utilities, parking, or other fees.

Don’t forget to factor in these extra costs when making your decision.

What to look for on your visit

When you are talking to a landlord or letting agency when you are viewing a flat, bear a few things in mind that you might otherwise forget to check for. 

It’s easy to ask about the rent, utility bills and white goods, but a host of questions could determine the difference between the perfect place, and somewhere that seems ideal, but only on the surface.

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Charge fees

Many agencies charge fees, so make sure the deposit and fees amounts are clear from the start, so you aren’t disappointed if it turns out you won’t be able to afford it.

Neighbours

Check if you can hear the neighbours through the walls. Also, some tenants like to have a chat with the neighbours. It can be daunting, but many people will appreciate a polite introduction and be happy to tell you what living in the building or area is like.

Maintenance of the property

Ask if the landlord has used professional services.

You need the information whether you are going to as the landlord, the previous tenants or the neighbours. 

Because many people try to disguise an old property with some handyman work and some professional end of lease cleaning, it all looks cosy and new until everything starts falling apart. 

So ask before you act.

Landlord and lease terms

If you’ve decided you like a property and are getting ready to take it on, ensure you are happy with your tenancy agreement’s terms.

It can be tempting to just scan through the tenancy conditions rather than read through a tedious legal contract, but it is a good idea to check it all thoroughly. It’ll be much more of a hassle if it results in a problem somewhere down the line.

Ask as many questions as you need to, and be sure to make your own copies of your agreements.

Make sure you are not being tied in for an extended period of time that doesn’t suit your needs, as this could be a costly and drawn-out process to get out of. Also, confirm the rent due date and any penalties for late payment.

If you are moving in with more than one person, is it a joint agreement or an individual contract? The latter is usually the more desirable as you are not liable for other people’s actions. In addition, you can check for any restrictions on subletting or having roommates.

Take your time

If you need another viewing to clinch the deal, most reasonable landlords and letting agencies will gladly help you decide. Don’t allow anybody to rush your decision or the time you take studying the tenancy details.

In summary

There is no secret formula to finding the perfect flat, but organising your search and conducting thorough research can make all the difference. 

However, considering these tips before settling on the first quite nice properties you view, you’ll be well on your way to finding the perfect new flat. 

Happy flat hunting!

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