Renting private accommodation will be a new experience for many students, and moving in to your own place can feel a bit daunting. We have therefore put together some tips for any first time renters to help you prepare for life in your new home.
Arrange your bills
When you move in, you will need to open a new gas and electricity account for the property. You can either stick with the current supplier, or switch to a supplier of your choice. You can find some tips for switching gas and electricity suppliers here. You will also need to set up a new account with your water provider. Thames Water supplies most areas in London.
Check your inventory
Make sure to check the inventory that your landlord or letting agent has provided. This is a document which records the condition of the property and the items which are in it. If you haven’t received one, you can ask for them to draw one up for you. If there’s anything missing, or any damage that hasn’t accurately been recorded, you can ask for it to be amended. You can find some tips on how to check and agree an inventory here.
Check all repairs
If you have agreed any repairs with your landlord prior to your move in date, you should check that these have been completed as soon as you move in. If anything still needs to be repaired or looked at, you can report these to your landlord or letting agent in writing.
Check your deposit is protected
If you have an assured shorthold tenancy, your deposit must be protected in a tenancy deposit scheme until you move out of the property. Your landlord or letting agent has 30 days from when you paid your deposit to protect your deposit and provide written information about which scheme your deposit is being protected in. You can find out how to check if your deposit is being protected here.
Apply for a council tax exemption
If you and all of your housemates are full-time students, you will be exempt from paying council tax. You can apply for an exemption by sending your council a copy of your statement of student status. Exact details of how to apply for the exemption will be on your council’s website. You can find your local council here.
Choose an internet package
Finding the most affordable and effective internet package is important, especially if you intend to spend a lot of time studying at home. You can search for the best broadband deals for your area on the Uswitch or Compare the market.
Update your address
Make sure to update your address with any important contacts. In particular, changing the address registered with your bank account may be helpful if you need to provide a proof of address in the future.