12 April 2013
Renting in Fulham: Useful tips
Located in South West London (SW6), Fulham is located on the banks of the Thames and home to the famous Chelsea Football Club. The close proximity to areas such as Chelsea and Kensington make this a popular location to buy and rent, although prices can be quite high as a result. If you are considering renting in this area, there are a few useful tips that are handy to keep in mind when dealing with estate agents and landlords.Shop aroundWhile looking for properties online can be very easy and useful, sometimes going to the area and checking local estate agents can be very beneficial, as you might find offers that are not available online. It’s even worth asking some estate agents if they have what you are looking for, although be aware they will sometimes try and get you to rent a property that suits them more than you! While prices will generally fall in the same area, make sure you have a thorough search in every potential avenue - online, in the area, asking friends and so on, as you are much more likely to find a bargain this way. Your initial costsRenting in Fulham will generally be more expensive than other parts of London, but that doesn’t mean you won’t find a bargain. That said, it’s important to make sure you have the appropriate budget and won’t be putting yourself in an uncomfortable financial position. The main things to remember to account for are the first months rent and security deposit (this will be your largest initial expense), agency fees (admin charges for inventory lists and tenancy agreements), and expected costs of utility bills and council tax. If you are lucky, you might find a rental that has some bills included. These are great if you can get them, as you don’t know that most of your costs will be included in one monthly payment. That said, these opportunities are rare, so if you do find one, get in contact with the agent/landlord as soon as you can. If you are being shown round by the current tenants of a property, then make sure to ask them how much you should expect to pay. While it may not be exact, it will help to give you an idea of outgoings so you can decide if you can afford the property or not. For information on council tax of any other charges, your agent or landlord will normally be able to help. If not, you can always check with the local council.Before you sign the tenancy agreementDon’t sign anything until you are 100% happy with what it contains. Sometimes, there may be stipulations that are at odds with your living requirements (no pets, for example), or things which you may find restricting. If you do find these elements in a n agreement, try discussing them with your point of contact (agent or landlord). It may be the case that they are willing to make exceptions, and redraft the agreement. This is generally not that common though, so it may put you in s difficult position. Also, if you are going through an estate agent, you will probably be charged more admin fees for a redraft, so only ask for one if you are certain you want to move into the property. Most of the time however, you will find that tenancy agreements simply contain agreements that prevent you from subletting the property, or redecorating etc. Be aware that if you break any of the agreements in the document, you can be removed from the property fairly quickly - again, this means you should make sure you have a good understanding of what a tenancy agreement contains.