5 questions every tenant should ask their landlord

Nathan Walker, Sales Director at CPS Homes in Cardiff, South WalesNathan Walker, Sales Director, highlights 5 useful questions every tenant should know the answer to before they move into a new rental property..

When tenants move into a new rental home there are a lot of important things they need to know about the property. The letting agent or landlord will have provided the tenants with a lot of both important and useful information, while also being on hand to answer any specific questions that may have been asked in the lead up to moving in day.

To help avoid confusion and ensure you as tenants are better accustomed to the property on the day you move in, we’ve listed 5 questions you should ask your letting agent or landlord before moving into the rental property.

1. Where can I find the gas and electricity meters?

Taking the gas and meter readers to pass on to your new energy suppliers will be one of the first things you do when you move into any property, unless you’re lucky enough to have energy bills included. The meters may have been pointed out to you during the viewing, but if not, make sure you enquire about where they are located so you can take the readings as soon as possible and not have to worry about searching high and low for them.

You could also enquire about having a smart meter installed if you are responsible for paying the energy bills.

2. Can I switch energy suppliers?

Whether you can switch energy suppliers or not will depend on the arrangements in place with the landlord. 

In most standard cases, the tenants have full control of the energy and are responsible for setting up and paying the bills, therefore they have free rein to go with whichever energy supplier they choose. If you do choose to change supplier, a landlord will always appreciate it if you let them know so that they are aware of what the situation is when you eventually vacate the property.

In other cases, the landlord covers the energy bills and includes it as part of the rent - something which is often the case for student tenants, for example - so the landlord will choose who the energy suppliers are. A tenant can always ask the landlord to consider changing suppliers for whatever reason, but be aware that they don’t have to switch.

In either case, communication is key, so make sure you’re aware of the situation you’re in when it comes to energy suppliers before the day you move in.

3. Where is the fuse box located?

A power outage or appliance failure can catch any tenant short, so if it happens to you then you’ll want to be able to reset the RCD on the fusebox to get the power back on. Most fuseboxes (or circuit breakers in most newer homes) are typically located away from main living areas, so you’ll usually find them in a garage, utility room, laundry room, or some closet somewhere. Ask your landlord to show you where it is and how it should be operated if you’re not sure.

4. Who supplies the phone and broadband?

Tenants can usually choose whichever phone and broadband supplier they choose, though things may be ready to go with the previous suppliers set and cabling. As with the energy supplier you choose, it’s always courteous and best practice to inform the landlord or letting agent about which phone and broadband supplier you do go with. In some cases a tenant may be limited in choice due to the cabling that is available at the property - this can be particularly true within apartment blocks.

5. Am I allowed to redecorate the property?

What you’re allowed to do in terms of redecoration should be outlined in the tenancy agreement. It’s unlikely a landlord will permit a tenant making permanent changes, but most are happy enough for their tenants to redecorate by painting walls etc. within reason. Before spending money and carrying out the work, double check with the letting agent or landlord to make sure they are happy with your plans.

Here at CPS Homes we have a huge range of rental properties available across Cardiff, so if you’re a tenant looking for your next home, why not get in touch to see how our team of letting experts can help? Get in touch by calling 02920 668585, e-mail enquiries@cpshomes.co.uk or pop into one of our three branches.

20 October 2021


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