How much will renting a house actually cost?
If you've found a house you love, think carefully about costs before you sign anything...
There are lots of different factors you need to consider, some of them you might not have even thought about yet.
Make sure you sit down with your future flatmates and discuss all of these so that you're on the same page:
Obviously, this will be your biggest outgoing so prepare yourself for it. You'll find that most flats/houses are advertised as per week payments but you can pay per month or term - termly is usually easiest so that you get all your outgoings sorted!
This depends on your contract because sometimes bills can be included in your rent and if so, it's a lot easier for you to know how much money you've got to spend. If not, you'll have a few different bills to consider. Some vary, some are fixed but they all need to be included in your budget:
- Gas - Varies from summer to winter. Wrap up warm to save yourself some cash because gas can be expensive.
- Water - This should run off your meter readings. So, if you take ages in the shower, it's time to sort that out!
- Electricity - Obviously depending on how many of you in the house, this could be quite manageable.
- Insurance - Living in halls means you will have this included but you need it in your private house to be safe rather than sorry! It's usually a monthly or annual fee - monthly is better.
- TV Licence - This costs £147 a year to watch live TV, online streams or recorded TV (ITV Hub, BBC iPlayer etc). If there are a few of you, its easier to all chip in and pay upfront.
- Internet - Most contracts require at least a 12-month contract so make sure you're aware before you sign up!
Factor this cost into your budget so that you don't have any nasty surprises. You're usually asked to pay a deposit of a months rent (per person) upfront as a deposit. Unless you have any damages, unpaid bills or missed rent when you move out, you'll get it back. Make sure you get a deposit protection scheme though!
If you've sorted your house through an estate agent, you'll have their admin fees to pay before you can collect your keys. They are non-refundable but usually only cost between £50 and £100. You're basically paying them for their time and effort of processing your rental agreement.