properties are being snatched up in as little as 24 hours - in which time
applicants are registered, vetted, shown the flat and have their paperwork
processed - before tenants move in a few days later. Renters also complain of
being gazumped by others offering more money at the last minute.
- Work out what you need, your budget, what you can negotiate on and how much you can afford to pay for bills and in rent (this should not be more than a third of your salary).
- Register with local estate agents and set up alerts on property sites such as Zoopla and Rightmove. Also check house-share sites such as Spareroom and ask on social media to see if anyone knows of any rooms coming up.
- Get your paperwork in order. Landlords and agents will want to confirm things such as your identity, immigration status, credit history and possibly employment status. You will need valid ID, pay slips and usually references from a former landlord and employer.
- Check your credit record for free with MoneySavingExpert’s Credit Club, Clearscore, or Credit Karma to ensure there are no mistakes that could cost you a property. If you spot any, contact the agency and ask it to amend them.
- Be as flexible as you can about viewings. Ask your employer if you can work around such appointments for a day or two, or consider taking time off work.