What to check for when looking to rent

Remember that you’re looking for somewhere to call home, so if you don’t feel comfortable… walk away and find another, they’ll be plenty.

We’ve put together a checklist of things to check when you move into rented accommodation…

From the outside:

  • Do the doors all look secure, and more importantly do they all lock?
  • Do the bottom floor windows all lock?
  • Is there a burglar alarm or an entry-phone system?
  • Is there parking? If so how many spaces/cars can fit?

If you have a garden:

  • Do we need to care for the garden or is there a gardener?
  • What maintenance would we need to do? Mowing/weeding?
  • Who else uses the garden or has access to the garden?
  • Is there a shed/outbuilding? If so, do we have access to it?

On the inside:

  • Is there any damp or flaking paint?
  • Does the property come furnished or unfurnished?
  • Does the property come with curtains/blinds?
  • Is there Wi-Fi already installed? If so which provider?
  • Is there central heating? Do all the radiators work?
  • Is there double/triple glazing? (Good to know for noise and warmth)
  • How much storage space is there? Do we have access to loft space (if any)?
  • Is the washing machine, tumble dryer and dishwasher in good working order (if any)?
  • Is there a carbon monoxide detector?
  • Are there smoke alarms on every floor? (by law there must be)


  • Where is the nearest supermarket? Or food shop?
  • How far are we from the train station?
  • Are we on a flight path? For noise…
  • What are the neighbours like? If you’re in an apartment block you’ll want to speak to the previous tenant to see whether the neighbours above/below were noisy or ever caused trouble
  • How many burglaries have occurred on the street/village/in the area recently?
  • Are we allowed to decorate (paint) and/or hang pictures up?
  • Why is the previous tenant moving out?
  • If there are problems with the property or we have questions do we go through a lettings agent or direct to the landlord?
  • What is the earliest move-in date?
  • How much notice would be needed if we decide to move out? Thinking ahead of course..


  • How much is the rent?
  • Are bills included in the rent? If not, what bills need to be paid? (If you’re in an apartment building you’ll want to know whether you’ll need to cover service charge and ground rent – which can be a lot -, or whether the landlord covers this)
  • How much deposit is required? Where is the deposit being held?
  • What are the estimated running costs of the property? (You could request to speak to a previous occupier, as they’ll give you an accurate account)

Happy hunting!