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Viewing a property to rent

Student Guides The Guild 24th April 2017

There can be a lot to think about when you are viewing a property, so here are some tips to keep you on track:

Arranging the viewing

Before you view the property, you need to arrange a viewing time.

  • Don’t be late or miss the appointment. If you're attending a physical viewing, plan your journey prior to booking the viewing in order to reserve enough time to travel there. If you are enquiring about a virtual viewing, avoid booking it during your work day when you're likely to get distracted and run late. 
  • Give yourself enough time to look around the property. If you rush it, you may miss some key deciding factors and won't have time to ask all the questions you'd like to.
  • Prepare a checklist, so you cover all the things you need to know.



The viewing checklist

Viewing a property requires a little practicality and it’s good to try and keep focused. You will also have your own needs, so using the checklist below as inspiration, create your own list and be extremely prepared!

Here’s a list of things to look out for and consider: 


Think carefully about the location. Often a property is cheaper because it is further out, so take the time to consider if it’s close enough to campus or your place or work, the shops and any necessary transport links you're likely to need.


Is there enough storage for you and your housemates’ needs?


This is a common problem, but there are several signs to watch out for including flaking paint or wallpaper, patches of black mould and a musky smell.


Keep an eye out for rodent droppings or traps when you’re looking around.

Security and safety

Safety isn’t always high on your list of priorities, but it is important. Checking that the street is well-lit for going home in the evening is a factor to consider. With the property itself, does it have a burglar alarm or at least a safety lock on the doors? Be sure to check that the fire alarms, extinguishers and fire blankets are working.

Furnishings and fittings

You need to know exactly what’s included in the tenancy agreement, as you need to know what you’re responsible for. 

The water supply 

Check the pressure in the taps by turning them on. 


Good ventilation in the kitchen and the bathroom is essential, so look for extractor fans. But also, check that you can open the windows generally in the property.  


If you get the chance, speak to your neighbours and ask them about their experience. Find out if they’re students or young professionals, for example, or if they have pets. They may even some useful advice for you. 



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