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ARLA issues 10 tips for tenants

Tenants will struggle if they end up in a property with a landlord that simply doesn’t care about the property or if they have a letting agent that doesn’t listen to them.

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Making the right choice

1. Choose your property and agent carefully. Looking at agents reviews and hearing stories from others with experience of renting through that agent will speak volumes. If everyone is singing their praise you’re likely to have an easy tenancy but if there is nothing but complaints take this as a red flag warning.

What’s important

2. Work out what’s important to you within your budget. If a property lacks an essential feature, keep looking. Factor in all extra expenses on top of rent too. Council tax, water, electricity, living, phone, broadband, etc. You may find a property with bills included.

Sharing accommodation

3. If you’re renting a shared house meet the other residents to make sure you’ll get along with them. Chat to them and find out about their hobbies, etc. If they have pets and you have a fear or allergy look for alternative accommodation. You could try someone such as letting agents in Gloucester or http://www.alexclarkglos.co.uk.

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Contracts

4. Ensure you’re fully protected by reading the contract carefully as it’s legally binding. Ask as many questions as you need to and make sure your landlord or agent has your property deposit held under a recognised protection scheme.

Safety

5. Ensure your new home is safe by knowing that the smoke alarms, CO2 alarms, etc. have been properly installed and tested. Ensure that the boiler and gas appliances have been serviced and have certificates.

Bills and insurances

6. As a tenant, there are specialised tenant insurances which normally come as a package of everything you will need. A good letting agent will notify utility companies of your arrival in a property so everything can be transferred over to you but if you are going through a private landlord they may not.

Resolving potential issues before they happen

7. Sort out problems as soon as they arise. Don’t leave them because it will become a much bigger issue.

8. Return the property in the same condition you found it in.

9. Know your rights as a tenant and pay rent on time –https://www.theguardian.com/housing-network/2017/jun/22/tenants-housing-rights-safety-repairs.

10. Work with the agent or landlord and build a good relationship.

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