What to Expect from a Student House Viewing
It is going to be important for you to know what to expect before you start booking appointments to view properties.
1. Check what type of viewings are available
After COVID forced virtual viewings last year, many agents and Purpose-Build Student Accommodation providers are continuing this. The advantage of this feature is that it allows you to walk-through prospective properties from the comfort of your own home.
The important thing about a “virtual viewing” is that it allows you to eliminate any properties that aren’t right straight away, so you don’t have to attend any unnecessary viewings!
The downside of this is that you might miss some of the details and conditions of the property. Where possible, we do recommend that you go in person to view the property and get a feel for the area. If you can't check out the area in person, then make sure you look at it on Google Streetview in the very least.
We do not support the practice of only being to view a property in person once you have placed a non-refundable deposit down on the property.
2. Social distance is still useful to remember
Unfortunately, COVID is still around, and it would be sensible to continue with social-distancing guidelines, especially if you are entering different households.
- Wash your hands prior to the viewing – there should be handwashing facilities made available
- Maintain a 2-metre distance, or as much distance as possible from people who are not part of your household
- If possible, wear a face covering during the house viewing
The current resident will usually be absent during the viewing to help with social distancing, but where this is not possible, they should stay in a separate section of the property for the duration of the viewing. If you are uncomfortable with any of the measures in place at any point, you should flag this with the landlord or letting agent.
3. Take your time
Choosing where to live is a big decision and not one to be rushed. The same can be said of when you are viewing a property. Take time to look at the neighbouring properties and even visit at different times of day to see if it feels like a safe area. A rushed visit may mean that you overlook some signs of damage or disrepair and forget something you wanted to ask. Take your time and ask lots of questions. Not only will this tell you about the property, but it will also give you an indicator of how helpful the landlord or agent is.
4. Look out for signs of damp
Living with a damp problem can be miserable, so keep an eye and nose out for these common signs! You can often smell damp, so be aware of that. If you can see watermarks or mould on the walls or ceiling this is another warning sign. Do not forget to ask if there is ever a plan with damp and see the agents or landlord’s reaction.
WHAT IF I’M SHOWING MY PROPERTY TO PROSPECTIVE TENANTS?
If you have people coming to view your student property, it may be easier to pop out somewhere during the viewing – both to make it less awkward and to maintain social distancing. If this isn’t possible, it might be a good idea to stay in a separate room for the duration of the viewing.
The agent/landlord should give you, the tenant, 24-hour's notice before entering the property.