Thursday, 26 July 2012

Finding a Rental

Ok it's been a little while since we've updated. I'll post a few new topics which try to catch up to where we are now...

We started looking for rentals on the week of the 2nd July. Our first application wasn't even considered I dont think as we got it in very late (2 days after we inspected the property) and there were 7 other applications. The next weekend we were much more prepared. We had 3 properties we were seeing on the Saturday. We had applications already prepared with all the supporting documentation attached. Once we saw the place and we decided that we wanted to put in for it, we signed the application, put our proposed rental amount on it and gave it to the agent. One of the agents wanted us to submit it to the real estate office rather than him take it in case he lost it{??} so we did that.

Our builder had given us a tip to try and make our application stand out over the others. This was to offer to pre-pay the rent for the entire period of the lease. If the landlord was looking for an injection of cash this could be a bonus, they might even accept a lower weekly amount if they were getting the total upfront. We took this approach on all the 3 applications we put in.

Monday came and I called the agents to see how long it would take and was told 48 hours. Some of our references got calls to check up on our suitability, by the end of the day, agents had called for 2 of the properties, these were our number 2 & 3 preference. At about 4pm we got a call saying that we got our 3rd preference. We told them that if they needed an answer straight away then we would pass on it as we would really prefer one of the others (this one was an older home and we would have been itching to get out as soon as we could), but she said we could wait till tomorrow to see what happend with the others.

The next morning we hadn't heard from our first preference nor had any of our referees been contacted about this one, so we thought we didn't have a  chance. There were at least 12 groups who went through it on Saturday, so we thought we must have missed out. Then I got a call from the agent telling me that we got it! We had asked for a6 month lease and the owner wanted a 12month, but we ended up splitting the difference and took a 9 month lease. About half an hour later we got a call on our second preference and we got that one too!

We are very glad with the rental we got, it's much more comfortable than both the other two and while a little more a week in rent, it's just much more pleasant living here than it would have been at the other two.

So my advice to those looking at rentals..

  • Be prepared with your applications so you can submit them that very day. You can normally pre-download the applications from the the real estate's website, otherwise get them to email you a copy of it
  • Supply all the supporting documents and more eg some will ask for car regos some won't, just have a photo copy ( or PDF) pack of everything that you can attach to the back of the applications. They will ask for alot of info, at first I was a bit uneasy that we had to supply so much (3 pays slips) but you just have to otherwise you have no chance in getting one.
  • Have a checklist of what you are looking for and take alot of notice. If it is a sought after property then a second viewing is going to be unlikely. eg we needed to make sure the property was suitable for our dog, so we had to check all the fences to make sure there weren't holes in it. We missed some bit, which we have had to patch when we moved in.
  • The agent told us, our applications was first submitted, well organised and had everything in it so he didn't have to follow anything else up which made his job easier and made him want to recommend us to the owners
  • If you can pre-pay then I don't think it can do your application any harm. In the end the owner opted not to take our pre-pay option ( which was less per week than just paying weekly) and ended up paying week by week.

While it turned out very well for us, we did stress for a while after our first was rejected and then having to go and view the others and wait from saturday to Tuesday to find out, seemed like an eternity. 

We signed our lease on the Tuesday afternoon and got the keys on the following Saturday 14th July. We then moved in on the 18th July - oh what a joy packing and moving was, but we are here now and cant wait to get started building!!

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