Ever considered renting? We used to rent many years ago and now we are actually landlords to a property. This is a very interesting article with some fab tips if you are thinking of entering into a rental property.
3 mistakes you won’t want to make as a tenant
So, you’ve searched through many sites such as www.rent.com/texas/houston-apartments/cheap and similar, and finally found the perfect rental home and you can’t wait to get the keys and move in. Before you do though, it’s important to make sure you’re in the know when it comes to being a tenant. It pays to do your research and to ensure you're prepared for this rental. If you’re not careful, you could end up facing a range of unnecessary expenses and problems in your new pad. With this in mind, here are three mistakes you’ll want to avoid.
1. Not taking out insurance
When people get a mortgage to buy a property, their lenders usually require them to purchase certain forms of insurance. In contrast, tenants aren’t under any obligation to get cover. However, ignoring the issue of financial protection could prove to be a costly mistake. If you’re wondering whether or not it’s worth taking out contents insurance for your rental property, spend a few minutes calculating the value of all the possessions you’ll be taking to your new home. Unless you can afford to repair or replace these if they’re damaged, stolen or lost, it’s a good idea to take out tenants’ insurance. Also, bear in mind that as well as your own possessions, you might be liable to cover the cost of any damage you cause to your landlords’ property. You can find this out by checking the terms of your tenancy agreement.
Taking out appropriate cover will ensure that if a problem does arise, you’re not left out of pocket. There are a variety of policies available now, and it’s important to find one that suits your specific needs. For example, if you want tenancy liability protection in addition to cover for your own possessions, you may want to consider HomeLet tenants contents insurance, which can include up to £10,000 of cover if you damage your landlord’s property, fixtures, fittings or furniture.
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2. Failing to pay proper attention to the inventory
Moving to a new home can be hectic, and in the excitement and stress of moving into your new place, it’s easy to overlook the importance of doing a detailed inventory check. It’s important to avoid this pitfall though. After all, this document is crucial if you want to get your deposit back at the end of your tenancy. The inventory lists all the items in your rental home, from beds to light fittings, and it details their condition. Make sure you go round the property with your letting agent or landlord to check that the information in this document is accurate before you sign it. It can help to take photographic evidence at this stage if you think there may be a disagreement later on.
Although going to this effort may seem like an unnecessary hassle when you’re moving into your new home, it could prevent stress and expense further down the line.
3. Not reading up on your rights and responsibilities
You have clear rights and responsibilities when you’re renting a home and it’s essential that you’ve got a good understanding of these. For example, you’re entitled to have your deposit protected in a government approved scheme, live in a property that’s in a good state of repair and be protected from unfair eviction and unfair rent. Also, your landlord must provide you with at least 24 hours’ notice before entering the property, unless there’s an emergency that means they need instant access.
Meanwhile, your responsibilities include taking care of the property and paying your rent on time, along with any other bills specified in your rental contract. Also, you must not sublet your home unless your tenancy agreement permits you to do so. If you breach the rules, your landlord might take legal action to get you evicted.
As long as you avoid making mistakes like these, you should be able to protect your finances and your rights. You also stand a good chance of having a harmonious relationship with your landlord or letting agent.
* Collaborative post.