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The hunt for a new home can be a long and painful journey, filled with plenty of time inspecting properties and one rejection after another. Understandably, you may just jump at the opportunity of someone saying yes, the biggest problem about that is you may rush into things and sign up for something you didn’t want.

The best advice I can begin with is to deploy a huge amount of patience in these situations. Don’t be pressured into acting faster than you need and ensure you read every section of the lease before you sign off. A few things to keep an eye out for in this situation would be the following. First and foremost, ensure you can afford the rent. The last thing you want is to create a bad tenant history for yourself because you fell into arrears or were evicted for not paying your rent, this can really hinder your prospects when looking for rentals. Make sure the lease is completely filled in without any blanks, you don’t want to sign something and have additional areas filled in after that bind you in.

Ensure that you once you have read the lease that you ask any questions, even if they sound silly, and have everything you need answered before proceeding. Also make sure that if you had any additional terms that you have discussed with the landlord or agent have been added in to your satisfaction and don’t ever just go by the word of someone. By the same token, make sure you are clear on any other additional terms added by the landlord or agent, such as, having the carpet professionally cleaned at the end of the lease or any other duties that need to be done before you leave.

A couple of things to bear in mind and ask about if it affects you are the landlords pet policy for now and the future. You may think about adding a companion to you family and not be able to, so ensure you’re clear on that from the beginning. See whether any gardens and laws are being maintained by you or if it’s provided by the landlord, there may also be a level of satisfaction that has to be met each month if you have to take care of the gardening. Finally, make sure that if you want to make any amendments to the property you gain the landlords consent in writing first. Things that are common these days such as fastening a TV bracket to the wall may seem harmless or very mainstream, though without consent you cannot start doing any works to a property otherwise you will be asked to bring the property back to its original state.

This is just a small insight into what you need to do before you put pen to paper. Always do as much research as you can before entering any agreement and have all your due diligence done. It may seem like a small thing in the beginning or such common practice, but it’s this mentality that will land you in the tribunals sorting out disputes that could have been avoided if you read through your agreement in detail.



The following advice is of a general nature and intended as an opinion and broad guide. For all legal, financial or real estate advice you should obtain independent professional advice to do with the specific nature of your circumstances before making any legal, financial or real estate decisions.

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