Renting a Property in 2023: Find Quality Accommodation
Every renter will likely be conscious of the shortage in rental properties and how difficult it can be to find a well-maintained home in high-demand areas without sacrificing priorities such as location, the number of bedrooms or outdoor space.
Tod Anstee often supports prospective tenants who have been searching for suitable rental accommodation for lengthy periods and have either not been able to find the types of housing they would like, or that attractive properties are removed from the market almost as soon as they are listed.
Here we share some tips about renting a property this year: the optimum way to conduct a rental property search and which aspects never to forgo in order to secure a rental agreement and the keys to your new home.
Why Are Rental Properties in West Sussex in Such Short Supply?
While West Sussex has always been a popular place to live, there has been a significant uplift in renters moving to the region, looking for family homes, semi-rural living, village communities and access to excellent schools. These features inevitably mean that properties in prime locations rarely stay vacant for long, if at all.
Availability fell around 10 to 20% in mid-2022, primarily because of the influx of tenants relocating away from the major cities yet within commuting distance of London and other business hubs such as Chichester, Crawley, and Brighton.
One of the many impacts of the pandemic was a trend against compact, congested living with fresh air, and smaller communities appealing to professionals, families and retirees alike.
Other factors, such as evolving, stricter regulations for landlords, have meant that many professional property businesses and those with high-value portfolios have stepped away from self-managing, choosing to handle their properties through a letting agent, given the compliance assurance and extra quality assessments that ensure their businesses are fully adhering to new rules.
Therefore, an already high-demand region has experienced even more pressure, where empty rental properties in premium positions are snapped up quickly, and renters are less likely to find quality listings on public marketplaces or advertising portals.
However, this change may be favourable for tenants who prefer to deal with an independent letting agent rather than liaising directly with a landlord when they have an issue or require emergency assistance with a breakdown or repair.
Letting agents ensure every party has efficient, friendly communications and up-to-date information and can operate with a degree of separation that improves transparency and avoids potential disputes.
The Best Way to Go About Finding a High-Quality Rental Property
Most renters base their property searches online, which can be convenient, potentially covering multiple areas in one comprehensive search. However, there are several compelling reasons to work with a local, experienced letting agent.
- Online property listings are commonly outdated. Renters spend considerable time submitting enquiries, requesting more information, or trying to arrange viewings, only to find that homes have long since been let.
- Competition is extremely high, and by the time a rental opportunity is published online, particularly across the larger forums, it will have been viewed by thousands of other tenants, making the prospects of a successful application minimal.
As a letting and estate agent with offices in Chichester and London, Tod Anstee works with a broad network of reputable local landlords who liaise with our lettings team to implement professional property management and ensure that each tenant is the right fit for the accommodation available.
We always recommend renters contact our lettings team for an initial discussion to help us understand what you are looking for and set the parameters for your rental property search.
When new vacancies arise, landlords add additional properties to their portfolios, or a tenant announces their intention to leave once a rental agreement ends, we can liaise with you, often before a property is available to rent and reaches the public domain. If you have registered your details with us, and we have carried out preliminary checks, it may be possible to match your requirements with a suitable home and streamline the process from initial viewing to moving-in day.
Adjust Your Property Search to Improve Your Chances of Renting a Property
During housing scarcity, tenants may be more willing to take risks or push forward with a rental agreement even where they have niggling doubts about whether the property, location, terms or rental cost are right for them.
There are some aspects we believe are fundamental and should never be put aside, even if it means the difference between finding a rental property and continuing your search.
Examples include the following:
- Settling for a property in poor condition. Experienced, professional landlords invest time and effort in ensuring every home is in excellent condition before it is rented or shown to any potential tenant. Issues such as mould, leaking roofs and dampness can be detrimental to health and develop into severe problems.
- Low energy-efficiency. Utility prices are at record highs and likely to remain so for some time – very inefficient properties with single glazing, no insulation or outdated heating systems will cost significantly more to run. However, period homes and larger properties inevitably have lower efficiency ratings, but this makes provisions such as insulation more important.
- Dubious contractual terms. Landlords must comply with regulatory requirements around storing tenants’ deposits, addressing problems, or organising periodic inspections. A direct rental agreement without sufficient safeguards can put your deposit at risk, make your tenancy unstable, or expose you to unethical practices and a lack of support when the property requires maintenance work.
If you are struggling to find the right property in your desired location, the best action is to contact Tod Anstee lettings to have an informal chat about the rental properties currently available to rent, your budget and expectations.
Renters moving to the area from further afield benefit enormously from independent, expert advice, narrowing down their search areas, evaluating which places match their aspirations, and assessing the types of property that will fit with their lifestyle.
Please get in touch at any time or browse our rental property listings online and register your details to organise a viewing at your convenience.