Top tips for tenants

Updated: Sep 20, 2018

Renting a property can often be a daunting and stressful experience but it doesn’t have to be that way. I’ve put together some helpful tips for tenants to make the process easy and positive.

Applying for a rental property

When you are interested in renting a property it can be easy to jump the gun. You love the house and you want to move in straight away but in order to be considered favourably by a landlord, it pays to be prepared.

  • Make sure you have all your documentation ready including photocopies of payslips, 100 points of ID and any other documentation outlined on the application form

  • Prefill and sign your application and make sure your housemate/s or partners have done the same. If you get ahead of the game you will have a result much sooner. Usually if we show a property on a Saturday we will be processing applications first thing on a Monday so you don’t want to wait to get your application in or you could miss out

  • Write a cover letter so that we know who you are and why you are moving. This saves us piecing the bits and pieces together and gives you the opportunity to provide any other information about yourself that you want the owner of the property to know

  • Be on time to the open home so that you don’t have to rush through the inspection. Take your time to look around the home and bring a tape measure and pen and paper so you can check if your fridge and other furniture will fit

"Take your time to look around the home and bring a tape measure and pen and paper so you can check if your fridge and other furniture will fit."

Routine inspections

  • Tell your property manager if you are going away and when you will be back so that an inspection is not scheduled while you aren’t there

  • Follow a checklist. We provide our tenants with a checklist of the areas we will be checking for the landlord. If you are renting through another agency ask them if they have a checklist you can follow to ensure you prepared for the inspection

  • It’s your choice if you want to be present or if the property manager uses the keys. Let your property manager know if you are comfortable or uncomfortable with them attending without you being home. If you would like to be home give your property manager as much notice as possible so that they can provide you with a timeframe of when they will be attending so you don’t have to wait around all day or take the whole day off work

  • Make a list of anything that isn’t working or that needs attention. An inspection is not just to make sure the property is clean and well looked after. It’s also to ensure there are no outstanding repairs that a tenant might have forgotten to mention to us and the best way for us to relay this to the owner is to see an issue first hand.

Condition Report

Apart from your lease agreement, the condition report is the most important document you will receive during your tenancy. This is the evidence of the condition of the property and any fixtures and fittings or furniture that was present when you moved in.

Tenants have 14 days from when they receive the report to make any notes on the report which may not already be noted down. I’m always surprised by how many tenants don’t return there report. It’s a busy and stressful time moving house but it is important to make time to check over this document.

It’s best to allow some time while the property is still vacant to have a very thorough look around before the furniture arrives. Our property managers spend an average of 3 hours putting a condition report together so that it is through but it is always possible things can get misses. We suggest you set aside an hour to note down any changes on the report and return it as soon as you can.

When it comes time to move out the property manager may have changed or the owner may even have changed so the condition report is there to protect you as well as the owner.

Read your lease and keep it in a safe place

When you sign a lease it is easy to skim over the details but you do need to be aware of your rights and responsibilities especially at the beginning and end of your tenancy. A lease agreement is a contract and important document you may need to refer to during your tenancy. If you are considering moving, a refresh of your lease agreement can ensure you don’t miss anything you need to do in preparation for the end of your tenancy.