Things to look for when renting
Looking for a rental property to call home? There are some important things to keep in mind to ensure the property acts as a great place to live rather than a burden.
If you're shifting from one suburb to another, have you considered your transport options?
Commuting to and from work can suck hours out of your day if you live in an area far away from your office with inconsistent or infrequent transport options.
Inner-city apartment living is a popular choice for young city workers without children but less desirable for larger families.
Those with children will need to consider transport options to work as well as how their children are able to get to school.
Young kids may need to be accompanied on the journey to school while older children may be more confident catching a bus or train by themselves or with their school friends.
Check out the local bus and train routes and weigh up the costs. If you're nabbing a rental property that's further out than usual but is much more affordable, don't forget to consider whether your weekly transport costs will skyrocket.
Living close to train lines or nearby key bus routes may present the opportunity for more environmentally friendly travel, compared to using a private car.
Comparing rental costs can be tricky, but that doesn't mean it should be avoided.
In fact, looking at what similar properties in the area are asking for in rental payments should be an essential consideration.
You might compare the requested rental price against properties with the same number of bedrooms and bathrooms, and you should also take into consideration the garden, exterior appearance and internal fit outs.
Don't forget to consider other amenities, such as a pool or off-street parking.
It's important to make sure you're being charged fair rent. If you later find that there are problems with the property - such as poorly maintained drains or mildew issues - you may well be stuck paying the price you initially agreed to.
Sound property management
There's a lot of focus on landlords finding the right tenants, but it's also important that tenants are finding the right landlords!
If any issues do arise with the property or maintenance is required, a knowledgeable property manager may be a valuable asset.
Property managers understand the legislative regime surrounding tenancies, can moderate any issues between tenant and landlord and have a wealth of property knowledge at their fingertips.