Should You Rent

Although you’re not planning to land yourself with the responsibilities of actual property ownership, renting is still an activity that demands rigorous attention to detail. Renting the wrong property – possibly with the wrong people – can lead to discontent all around. 

So, what should you know about renting to make it a happy experience – whether long term or short term? The information you require can be broken into: 

• The rental property you can afford
• The type of accommodation you would like to rent
• The location you would like to rent in 

The rental property you can afford 

Three central costs are associated with renting, being: 

• Start-up costs
• Periodic rental payments
• Your day-to-day living costs and unexpected expenses 

Scrupulous budgeting is required to manage these three cost areas. Inability to maintain control in any or all of these areas might see you miscalculate your total expenditure and blow your budget. Assessing your cashflow is imperative; you may spend money on the bond, furniture and the first month’s rent only to discover you cannot afford to purchase food and other necessities. 

Be realistic about what you can afford each week or month on your rental expenses. Allow enough slack in your budget to cope with unanticipated costs in addition to normal living expenses. No one plans to catch the flu or select a set date for their car accidents. It would be prudent to apportion another 10% of expenditure to ensure you have covered unforeseen expenses. 

If you’re saving for a future expense such as a deposit for a home, you should budget for the regular savings as an outgoing. Setting up special savings accounts for these amounts is a useful way of avoiding otherwise spending the money on entertainment. 

Your start-up costs are likely to include: 

• Bond payments
• Rental in advance
• Moving costs
• Utility expenses (connecting to gas, telephone, electricity etc)
• Your furniture bed, tables, chairs, decorations etc
• Kitchen utensils
• Linen 

Ask yourself whether you have sufficient funds to cover these items. Remember that many of items can be purchased cheaply – second hand or borrowed from friends and family members. 

The type of accommodation you would like to rent 

There is a wide range of rental accommodation available. Included are: 

• Private rental – house or unit
• Boarding
• Campus residential colleges
• Caravans
• Public and community housing

Private rental is housing owned by either businesses or individuals and leased to tenants. As such, it is the most common form of accommodation for people who do not own property and are ineligible for public housing. 

You should consider the garden.  If it is not expessly written into the lease that the Landlord will maintain lawns and gardens, you will be expected to maintain them.  You will need a lawn mower if there are lawns and basic tools for weeding, pruning and general garden tidying.  You will also need to remove garden waste from the property.

Co-tenancy occurs when more than one person shares the accommodation and each signs the Tenancy Agreement. Each co-tenant has equal responsibility for taking care of the premises and paying the rent. 

Sub-letting occurs when the premises houses both the “head-tenant”, whose name is on the lease, and one or more “sub-tenants”, who are not registered on the lease. The head-tenant holds all responsibility for the premises, while sub-tenants are not entitled by law to the rights and protections that may be provided under the lease agreement. 

The location you would like to rent in 

You will undoubtedly have a preferred location to live according to your budget and lifestyle. Study the average rental values of the suburbs you prefer. Lifestyle is an important consideration. Take stock of the things that are important to you. 


• Work place close
• Access to public transport
• Family/friends nearby
• Shopping facilities
• Medical facilities


• Childcare
• Pre-school
• Primary school
• Secondary school
• Adult learning 


• Parks
• Sporting facilities (e.g. sports grounds, gyms, tennis courts, pools, etc.)
• Beaches
• Libraries
• Entertainment 


• Appealing streetscape
• Low noise area (away from traffic, flight paths and industry)
• Clean air 

Your property manager

Your property manager manages your landlord’s property and owes him or her a duty of care to ensure that the property will be looked after and the rent will be paid on time.  She is also there to assist you to have suitable accomodation.  Many people apply for each property that is available for rent and Elders Real Estate Echuca have a strict process of checking references and suitabilities for each property.  Should you be chosen to rent a property, your property manager has entrusted you with the day to day care of the property and the ability to pay your rent on time.  Your property manager wishes for you to be happy and comfortable in the home and is there to assist you so long as you are not in breach of your lease and you show common respect for the property and your property manager.  

Your Landlord  

Should you be chosen to rent a property, your  landlord hasentrusted you with the care of his property which is worth a considerable sum of money.  All he asks in return is that you pay your agreed rent on time and that you do care for the property and notify your property of any maintenance issues in a timely and reasonable manner.  Whilst it is easy to think that your Landlord is very wealthy, that is not always the case.  Your landlord has expenses and responsibilities too and your agreed rent is factored very highly in his budget.  If you do not pay your rent on time, it is very much like you not getting paid your wages. 

Your Rental History

Your tenancy file can be a great asset or a huge liability!  More and more, property managers require a blemish free rental history. With many tenants applying for each property, every tenant is checked against the National Tenancy Data Base and with previous managing agencies for a rental history and reference. Modern systems can now trace the history of rental tenancies in such a way that any late rentals, property damages and general problems with tenants can be recorded and recalled at any time.  Defaulting on your current tenancy may cause a Notice to Vacate to be served on you and will very definitely impact on any future tenancy applications which you may make.

Tenancy Application Form

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