Finding a flat here is tricky business. Not only is rent expensive but you’ll be hard pressed to find one with a bedroom bigger than a shoebox; even then you’ll be battling it out with 50 other desperadoes who are willing to up the price. In West London, people can pay upwards of £1,500 a month for a flat. However, an exciting and easy way to avoid this is by moving into a flat-share. Not only will it save you money but you’ll make some great friends in the process and you can usually move in right away.
Arrivehomes.com has flats all over the city and the team’s expert knowledge makes finding the right fit a walk in the park. They specialise in flat-shares for teachers and young professionals so you’ll likely end up with a good bunch. Trust us, your friends will be jealous when you’re necking pints in the pub with your new mates and have money to spare, while the closest they’ve had to a social excursion recently is a trip to the Outer Hebrides with their estate agents. Who are charming company, by the way.
Keep it flexible:
Other than saving money, shorter contracts might be the single best reason why flatshares rule. Most flats in London require at least a year on the contract – some two – which is a risky commitment if a month on you meet the love of your life and want to elope to a Caribbean island (dreams do come true). Or maybe the mould on the ceiling is just getting to you. Either way, it’s almost impossible to get out of a contract with an estate agent without losing huge swathes of money.
Avoid expensive fees: When looking for a place in London, it’s advisable to go through estate agents rather than renting privately, as this ensures that the flat reaches safety standards and any problems are fixed promptly (there are a lot of horror stories out there). However, this is also costly, and estate agents love to ramp up the fee, just for the pleasure of showing you a shoebox that only a king could afford. These non-refundable fees can reach up to £600, and you won’t know how much until the deal is done. Going with a flat-share, however, cuts out those high payments, meaning extra cash for fun!
Make new mates:
Meeting new people in a city as big as London can be really tough, but flat-shares automatically provide with you a group of people to share some of those trials and tribulations with. If your roomies have been here a while they might be full of tips for places to go and people to meet, or if they’re new on the block too, then you can go at it together.
The idea of moving into a house of strangers may sound daunting, but as most people who have lived in flat-shares will tell you, lots of them end up best mates. Peruse the flat-share websites before you start hunting to get a sense of who they rent to, and when you look around get chatting. It’ll be easy to gauge whether you’ll hit it off with potential roomies just by visiting.
Avoid technology headaches:
The great thing about moving into a flat-share is that things like wireless internet and cable TV will all be in place. Believe us, that’s a huge weight off your shoulders. When you move into new rentals in London, quite mysteriously and unbelievably for one of the biggest, most developed cities in the world, internet can take months and months to arrive. The same goes for setting up cable, which can be a huge battle (never had the joy of being on hold with a cable provider for four hours? Well, you will now). Furthermore, things you didn’t even know you needed like TV licenses will also need to be organised, as will your water and electricity providers. A pounding head should be a sign of a hangover and nothing else.