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What to Look Out for When Renting a Home


Whether it is financially beneficial for you or convenient because you may decide to move elsewhere in the future, renting a property has many positives. However, as you are only renting and don’t own the property, there is an element of risk involved. We have put together a list of things to be aware of when deciding to rent a home to keep you safe from any misconduct, poor living conditions and hopefully avoid any problems later on down the line.

The Local Area

You can do your research on the local area online before you arrive at the viewing, but it is good to look out for some particular things when you get to the property.

  • What is the local area like?
    • Are there transport links nearby?
    • Are your preferred amenities close? E.g. shop, school, gym
  • Are there any potential nuisances?
    • Is there any loud traffic noise passing by?
    • Is it near a club that could cause an issue?
    • Is there a river that is prone to flooding?
  • What are the neighbours like?
    • Ask what the neighbourhood is like and also have a look for yourself; take a walk around and see what the general feeling is. You need to decide if you could see yourself living in the area – would you feel happy, safe and secure?

Check the Condition of the Property

When viewing a rental property, it is your opportunity to check that it is exactly what you are looking for, but more importantly, does it meet the general requirements. Here is an easy checklist to follow when viewing a property so you can be sure that the home is in the best condition possible:

The Exterior of the Property

Before you even enter the property, you should be giving a good check over for any issues to the exterior.

  • Is it in good condition?
    • Are there any cracks or chipping?
  • Is it secure? 
    • Are the windows and doors lockable? Check the quality of them. 
    • Is there a burglar alarm? Ask if there has ever been a burglary or any damage to the property. 
  • Is there a garden? 
    • If so, is it secure and who is responsible for maintaining it?

The Interior of the Property

Once you are inside the property, there are plenty of things you need to be on the lookout for.

  • Is there any sign of damp or paint flaking?
  • Is there central heating?
    • Do the radiators all work and function properly?
  • Is there hot water?
    • Is the water pressure okay? 
  • Is the property insulated sufficiently?
    • Is there any sign of draught? 
    • Is it double-glazed? 
  • Are there any obvious hazards? 
    • Are there any loose wires?
    • Are there any faulty plugs or lights? 
    • Is there any dodgy wiring? 
  • If you are renting a property that is furnished, are the furniture and appliances in good condition?
    • Is any furniture unsafe, broken or damaged? 
    • Check the bathrooms are in good condition. Ensure taps aren’t leaking, the shower works correctly, the toilet flushes and the bath and sinks drain okay. 
    • Are the sealants around the bath and shower in good condition?
    • Do the washing machines and dishwasher work (if applicable)? 
    • Check if any repairs are required.
  • Does the kitchen offer enough cupboards and work surfaces? 
  • Is there enough storage space throughout the property? 
  • Are there a sufficient amount of electrical and telephone points? 
  • Can you receive quality broadband and Wi-Fi? 
    • You can check the broadband speed capabilities online.  

Questions to Ask

Having a viewing is the perfect opportunity to ask some important questions and find out more about the property.

  • How many viewings have there been?
  • Can you redecorate?
  • Are animals allowed?
  • Does the property come fully furnished?
  • How long is the tenancy for?
  • Why are the current tenants leaving?
  • Which bills are included in the rent?

We hope that you can now consider renting a property and feel equipped to attend some viewings to ensure you find your perfect home. When you find the property you’ve been looking for, take a look at our blog on how to turn your rented house into a home.


If you are looking to let your property, here at Godfrey, Short and Squire we manage an extensive portfolio of properties. If you are new to renting out a property, we have a landlord guide to help you understand the sector in greater detail. For more information, please get in contact on 01837 54504, we are happy to help. 

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