OK, it’s been a while since rented anything more long-term than a fortnight via Airbnb. Put it this way, I’m equally alarmed and pleased to note that the end of my mortgage is within reach. (Anything under a decade is within reach when you’re my age.)
However, the people at HomeLet still think I may know a thing or two about being a tenant that might helpful for millennials in the market for a new place to lay their hats.
To be fair, Boy One might be looking for new digs before long and so I’ll have to see the issue from his point of view.
So, kids (I can call you young folk kids, can’t I?) here’s what I know.
Make a list of what you need. That’s right. Take a shopping list when you go flat hunting. That way you won’t be dazzled by a beautiful garden somewhere that’s too far from the bus stop. Or forget that you actually need space for the other three people you’re going to share with.
Take pictures of it all. The day you get the key and before you throw the first party, take photos – lots. That way you’ll remember how it all looked when you moved in because one day you will have to make it look that way again. You’ll need to know how many pans and plates were here and how many you bought. Pics will help.
Can you keep it clean? While dazzling white might look amazing and bright when you’re viewing the flat. Have a little think about whether or not it’ll be a total pain to keep clean. Are the surfaces smooth and in a good condition? Is the bathroom going to be manky in minutes?
Where are you going to put your stuff? There might be a reason the bedroom feels fantastic and spacious. Yup. That’s because there’s no storage furniture. It’s not rocket science. As yourself how much space your stuff takes up where it is – you’ll need something similar in the new place.
Stand still, shut your eyes and think about your day. You are going to do all the usual things in your new rented gaff – sleep, eat, go to work/class, wash, exercise, read, study, hang out. Think about a whole day. Can you see yourself around the clock? For example, if you can’t get going in the morning without yoga, then a flat with nowhere big enough for your mat is no good.
If there’s something that’s a bit of a pain now. Annoying things are only going to get worse. This is a rule of life, actually. If the new flat has something slightly irritating about it, sure as eggs, it’ll drive you nuts before you move out again.
Rules are boring but sometimes there’s a reason. Landlords, like parents, don’t think up rules just to annoy you. Really. If there are rules – like not sticking things on the wall, or having pets living in – there is probably some logic behind this. If you’re not sure. Ask.
What have you got – what do you need? Make an actual list of the things you’re going to take with you – furniture, possessions etc. It’ll help you find somewhere that suits you.
Ask your mum. In much the same way that HomeLet think I might know something helpful to you by dint of the fact I’m incredibly old, your mum knows quite a lot too. Ask her what she things and listen to the answer.