Whether you are new to the renting process or a seasoned renter moving house, there are certain guidelines that can help you avoid common renting pitfalls and have a lawful, harmonious relationship with your property manager or landlord. Renting a property may seem like a complex and challenging task because of all the steps and processes involved. However, the entire experience can become hassle-free if you take your time to learn how it all works. Following are the steps of the tenancy process and some tenant tips that will help you in this regard:
Searching for a good property is the first step in the process. It is very important to do your research before making any decision. Consider the areas that appeal to you. Learn everything about them as well as the type of home that you are looking for. Have a look at the quality and price of the homes available in those areas. Consider the property size, carports, amenities, etc. and how much you want to pay which will impact how much rental bond you will need to pay, and where necessary, for when you need a personal loan for your bond loan. Once you have set your criteria, you are ready to start your search for the suitable property.
Making an Application
Once you find the right property, the next step is the application process. The property manager will run through the contract and application process with you. If approved, you may be required to pay a holding fee within 48 hours, or pay the rental bond up front. Apart from this, you will also need to supply 100 points of identification as well as your personal details and any references related to previous landlords and/or employment. On your behalf, your signed application will then be presented to the owner(s) and you will be notified within 24 hours as to whether or not you are successful.
Paying Your Bond
The rental bond is required as a financial security should there be a breach in the lease agreement. The bond is held as protection against any undue property wear and tear or damage. If there is no damage to the property except the normal wear and tear during the term of your tenancy, you will be eligible to get your bond back right after you vacate.
The amount of the rental bond or tenancy bond is specified in the lease document. It is typically equivalent of four weeks’ rent. There is an additional amount in certain cases where furnished properties or pets are involved. Consider a personal loan for a rental bond loan if you don’t have enough to put the bond together. BondHub specialize in finding personal loans for bond loans for tenants who are moving at short notice and haven’t managed to save enough to cover the bond, moving costs, rent in advance and any shortfall.
Once the lease has been signed by all parties involved, you will be able to move into the property on a date specified in the tenancy agreement. It is always best to be prepared when moving in day is around the corner. It is recommended that you have a checklist of tasks at hand such as organizing removalists, connecting your utilities when you have moved in, redirecting your mail, notifying relevant institutions of your change in address, etc. Most agents actually have a free utility connection service that proves to be valuable here. You should ask your property manager if they offer such service.
As a tenant, it is your responsibility to make sure that you meet and don’t breach any of the terms and conditions set out in the Residential Tenancies Act and your lease agreement. These terms and conditions include (but not limited to) the following:
- Making sure that the rent is always up-to-date and paid on time.
- Adhering to property inspections when required (landlord/manager must give at least 7-14 days’ written notice).
- Maintaining upkeep of property (unless it is stated otherwise in the contract) e.g. garden maintenance, cleaning windows, replacing light bulbs, keeping property clean, etc.
- Not participating in illegal activities on the premises.
- Avoid causing nuisance to neighbors or the landlord.
- Asking for the landlord’s permission before installing fixtures or making any kind of alterations or renovations to the property.
- Not causing damage to the premises and informing the manager/landlord as soon as possible in case of damage.
Vacating the Premises
If your fixed lease agreement has expired and you don’t want to renew it, then you can vacate the premises providing that you have given the suitable notice on a periodic lease. It is also possible to break a fix lease agreement, but it has certain legal and financial ramifications.
Upon conclusion of your tenancy, you will need to vacate the premises and return the keys to the landlord. Your landlord will then complete a final bond inspection and if no cleaning/fault is applicable, you will be required to sign a bond disposal form so that you can get your rental bond back. Some landlords accept bond transfers, so if you need to, discuss this with your old landlord and your new one to see if this is possible. Failing that, BondHub can assist with finding the most affordable bond loan to help cover the cost of the move.