It’s an exciting time when you find your perfect apartment - you’ve looked around at York, Liverpool or Edinburgh apartments and you’ve finally found your perfect place. It can be very tempting to sign on the dotted line immediately, however, it’s important to hold off, assess the apartment and ask yourself (and your estate agent) a few questions.
Is it the Ideal Location?
It might look like your perfect home but if it adds an extra hour onto your work commute or it’s more difficult for your friends to get to - you’re not going to enjoy it as much as you’re thinking.
Checking your commute time at your exact times of travel is essential as journey times can vary so much depending on the time of day. If you discover that, in order to make it into work on time, you’re going to have to leave the house two hours earlier, the effects of that are going to take their toll on you as you’ll be losing sleep and feeling tired and grouchy. Add to this the increased chances of coming across roadworks, or delays on your longer commute and you run the risk of being late for work more often, which is an added issue to worry about that you don’t need.
In addition to commute issues, you need to consider if the area feels safe. If you’ve found a stunning apartment for a very reasonable price, there can sometimes be another reason why this bargain hasn’t yet been snapped up. It is easy enough to check crime rates in the area you’re interested in by using police.uk which will give you a clear indication of what crimes have happened on that particular street. You should also arrange with a friend to visit the area at night and take a walk down the road to get a real idea for how safe the area feels after dark. It’s a good idea to also visit the street at the weekend as well so that you can get an insight into noise levels, how busy it can get and any other issues you may notice.
Is the Property Within Your Budget?
It can be very tempting to start to slowly but surely increase your budget, especially for a property you’ve fallen in love with, but it’s easy for this to get out of hand and for you to end up convincing yourself that you can afford somewhere that’s too expensive. Calculate your finances with the monthly rent and don’t forget to include the council tax bill and all other regular, monthly bills, to make sure that the property you’ve chosen is within budget.
Something that can get overlooked is considering the heating bills based on the type of property you're looking at. Check whether gas cookers are installed and if there’s double glazing as these features can impact what you’re paying out on your heating each month. If you’re interested in an older house with high ceilings, your heating bills are going to be higher than those in a small, modern flat on the second floor, for example, so it’s important to look into this before making your final decision.
How Long is the Tenancy Agreement?
If you’re after some flexibility with your tenancy agreement then a short term let may be the way to go as it will give both you and your landlord a chance to see if it’s a good fit, however, it’s worth bearing in mind that you may face fees every time you renew your lease. If, on the other hand, you’re after something more long term, it’s important to make this clear to the landlord or agent to see what your options are.
Who Lived in the Property Before You?
It’s a good idea to ask why the current tenants are moving as this can give you an insight into any issues with the property - if the current tenants were only there for a short period of time, it may indicate an issue with the property, landlord or area. Of course, there can also be personal reasons for tenants moving out so quickly, such as a change of job, but asking the question is good practice for finding out as much information as possible before you sign your own name on the lease.
Reasons to Choose a Property Management Company
There is a big gulf between being a landlord and a simple property owner. There are those property owners who live far away, and they cannot deal with the responsibilities of being a landlord. Hence, appointing a property management company is the best solution. Some of the reasons you choose a management company include; protecting your investment, offering the best services to clients, low monthly management fees, and shorter vacancy periods like Bay Property Management Group.