No matter where a person lives, quite a large percentage of the monthly income goes on rent, if you are a tenant. In the current times of inflation, where the cost of living has also spiralled, the burden becomes heavier. With the demand for accommodation still exceeding the supply, estate agents such as the Letting Agents in Sheffield agree that house prices are high and, correspondingly, rental amounts are also rising.
However, there are some ways to get a good deal when renting a property.
Depending on the time available to move, research should be conducted at the earliest. If the location is decided upon, the property market there should be searched, and accommodation identified suitable to your requirements and budget. Prices should be checked with those of other similar properties in the area. With the help of an experienced estate agent, physical or virtual viewings can be arranged, and negotiations can be carried out. This will give time to take a look at more than one property before a decision is made.
Most landlords cite a price higher than the expected one, so the best way is to ask for a lower price, as it is in most cases expected. However, there should be a reason(s) why you are asking for a lower rent. If you ask for a lower rental (after your research), you will have to be prepared to answer the question, “Why?” with facts. If the rental is higher than a couple of similar properties in the area, you can just ask the landlord to compare and see if he can reduce the rent. Another option is to point out features available in other properties but missing in the one you like. Lack of garden space, furniture or, in cities, parking space, can add leverage to your negotiation.
It is wise to clarify and keep readily available the documentation required. As per government instructions to landlords, it is mentioned that “You must check that a tenant or lodger can legally rent your residential property in England.”
Hence, proof of ID, address, the right to rent, employment, and credit references are some such documentation. A character certificate from your employer or a “responsibility” reference from a previous landlord could add to your credentials. If self-employed, proof of earnings over a longer period may be required, such as bank statements or tax returns. Details of the providers for such credit references (accountant, employer, landlord) may need to be given to enable the letting agent or new landlord to check.
One of the security measures is to take a Tenants Liability Insurance, which protects renters from accidental damage to items such as furniture, fittings and fixtures provided by the landlord in the property. A key benefit is that the insurance cover can minimise deductions against the deposit paid.
A landlord will require a reason to consider lowering your rent. If you prove that you are an ideal tenant, this may happen. Your credit score could prove to be sufficient proof if there is a good credit rating. A credit check may be carried out by the landlord or letting agency, and, by surveying many financial factors, they will have an idea of your reliability. Keeping a credit score ready will be transparent, even if the rating is not perfect, and will be another way to prove your sincerity. However, the credit check cannot be conducted without your permission, and you do not need to pay the fee for carrying it out.
If time is not a factor, it is wise to assess the time of your move. Prices depend on demand and supply. Many people move during the warmer seasons, especially students. When the demand increases, there is less room for negotiations. Sometimes, landlords may take advantage and ask for higher rentals. It is advisable to move towards the end of the year. Most people do not move during the Christmas season, and properties that are empty in early December usually remain so for a time. Properties that remain vacant for longer will also probably be less expensive, but first, a check needs to be done to see why they have remained empty and the reason for the rental reduction.
It can be rather daunting to try and get the best deal when renting a property. However, as one authority put it, “Empty months are the single most horrible thing that can happen to a landlord after a bad tenant destroying the entire property, that is …” So, by considering the above tips, you could land up with a reasonable monthly rental, reducing that huge burden on your shoulders.