7 apartment hunting mistakes to avoid

Jul 20, 2018
7 apartment hunting mistakes to avoid
So, you know you want to live in London. You’ve decided that the big city life is for you and you want everything on your doorstep. You’ve also made the decision that an apartment is the best suited property type for your current lifestyle. But with so many apartments in London to view, and so many different areas, how can you make sure you get the right one? Here are seven apartment hunting mistakes to avoid in your search.

1. Don’t begin before you’ve done your research

Beginning your search with one priority – getting an apartment in London – will make sure you’re in for a chaotic and confusing ride. London has very distinct areas, all offering something different for residents in terms of amenities, transport links and of course price.
Take your time to evaluate your list of requirements and find an area that ticks all of your must-haves and also some of your nice-to-haves. Make sure you compare this against your budget and then you can begin your search.

2. Don’t just view the properties

Once you’ve decided on your favourite areas, don’t simply just go and view the available apartments. Take a full day out of your schedule and spend time getting to know your chosen area. Something that looks fantastic on paper, may just feel wrong on foot.
Alternatively, one of your lesser choices on paper, may feel exactly right on foot. Do as the locals do. Relax in a café, walk around any green spaces and enjoy an evening meal. You’ll soon know if the area feels right to you.

3. Don’t move too quick

Sometimes you just know as soon as you step into an apartment on first viewing. If you get the feeling deep down, that’s fine, but you don’t always need to move too quickly. Take your time and think of the practicalities too.
Before making any moves, ensure you go for a second viewing. And make sure it’s at a different time of day. This will give you a real feel for what it’s like, how noisy it may be during rush hour and how much natural light you’ll get during the day.

4. Don’t forget to consider all the details  

You might be able to visualise living in your chosen apartment, but don’t just rely on the picture in your head. When you see somewhere for the second time, you need to view it with more of a critical eye.
As well as viewing it at a different time of day, you may want to consider going armed with a tape measure and the dimensions of your furniture, checking the boiler, ensuring all the appliances work, and testing any taps and the shower to check the water pressure. Take a checklist with you and make sure you run through everything.

5. Don’t forget to balance out your priorities

Location or property? When finding the ideal apartment for you in London, you may have to balance your chosen area with your desired property. If you’re lucky enough to get something you can afford, exactly where you want it, great. But this doesn’t always happen. Think about what matters most to you and make the right decision.

6. Don’t ignore your security options

The best apartment blocks in London will have good levels of security. As part of a gated community or apartment complex, there might be onsite 24-hour security, CCTV and a code to gain access. When looking for your new apartment, take all this into account.

7. Don’t forget about the extras

Gym? Swimming pool? Private parking? They sometimes exist with apartments in London. If you want all this just a couple of steps away from your front door, take note of the potential increase in price they may bring to your service charge. Always keep an eye on your budget, and compromise if necessary. If you avoid these mistakes, you’ll be well on your way to finding your perfect London apartment.