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14-03-2012, 21:20   #1
bb1
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Letting Agents & Safe Parking

Hi all,

I recently moved over, last week to be precise. Staying with Friends in Stratford on an Airbed at the minute, not ideal, but it's brilliant for the time being until I find my feet.

I'm working as a Site Engineer, so will be working all over the City, no set position, so I'm looking for a nice area anywhere on a good Tube Line. Finchley and Clapham have been mentioned to me as nice areas, but I hear the Northern Line is always choc'o'block.

My Girlfriend is planning on moving over to me when I get settled in, so I'm looking for accommodation for 2 really.

In a perfect world I'd like to get our own Appartment if viable, but wouldn't mind sharing if we had to. Some place with a Balcony or place to have Barbeques would be sweet. A Building with it's own Gym/Pool, wishful thinking I assume. Budget we would have would be £1200 but we could stretch a little if a top place came up.

Is there much Apartments with underground or safe, out of site, car parks? Would there be much extra cost for this?

I've called into a few Estate Agents here in Stratford, but they weren't very helpful when I mentioned I was looking for accommodation in other areas.

Does anyone know of any helpful Letting Agents that would be worth trying? Is my budget realistic? Any other suggestions for areas to look in?

Thanks,
B
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14-03-2012, 21:34   #2
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Best bet is to look on rightmove.co.uk or spareroom.co.uk

Best of luck
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19-03-2012, 14:33   #3
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I'm working as a Site Engineer, so will be working all over the City, no set position, so I'm looking for a nice area anywhere on a good Tube Line. Finchley and Clapham have been mentioned to me as nice areas, but I hear the Northern Line is always choc'o'block.
Yeah, the Northern Line is absolutely mental at peak times.
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In a perfect world I'd like to get our own Appartment if viable, but wouldn't mind sharing if we had to. Some place with a Balcony or place to have Barbeques would be sweet. A Building with it's own Gym/Pool, wishful thinking I assume. Budget we would have would be £1200 but we could stretch a little if a top place came up.
To give you an idea of cost, I live in a 1 bed garden flat with the missus in Clapham, about a ten minute walk from Clapham North Tube and 15 minutes by bus from Waterloo, and that costs us £320 per week.
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Is there much Apartments with underground or safe, out of site, car parks?
Not a huge number I wouldn’t have thought – most people in (relatively central) London don’t own cars so there’s not much demand for parking. Also, purpose-built apartments tend to be smaller than ex-LA flats and conversions, in my experience.
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I've called into a few Estate Agents here in Stratford, but they weren't very helpful when I mentioned I was looking for accommodation in other areas.
Agents are pretty unhelpful at the best of times, but yeah, you would need to call into and/or ring an office based in an area you’re interested in living in.
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Does anyone know of any helpful Letting Agents that would be worth trying?
Honestly, every single letting agent I have encountered in this city is absolutely hopeless – dealing with them is one big endurance test.
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20-03-2012, 14:02   #4
bb1
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The Rightmove website seems very good. Spent Thursday evening saving a lot of Properties that had potential. Nearly all them seem to be through letting agents though. Some seem to good to be true, a lot have been up for over a month, so I'm a bit sceptical. £300-£400 p/w seems to be the going rate for a nice 1 Bed.

Would Council Tax be cheaper for a 1 Bed than a 2 Bed in the same area? How does it work, is it how many Bedrooms or Sq/ft of House?

From looking into it, decent Apartments with Parking seem to have a flat rate of £100 p/m for the parking spot, I suppose no free lunch, don't know is it worth it to bring over a car that might only be used a couple of weekends a month.

Thanks for help.

Just got to find the time to get viewing now, not easy over here.
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20-03-2012, 14:24   #5
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The Rightmove website seems very good. Spent Thursday evening saving a lot of Properties that had potential. Nearly all them seem to be through letting agents though. Some seem to good to be true, a lot have been up for over a month, so I'm a bit sceptical. £300-£400 p/w seems to be the going rate for a nice 1 Bed.

Would Council Tax be cheaper for a 1 Bed than a 2 Bed in the same area? How does it work, is it how many Bedrooms or Sq/ft of House?

From looking into it, decent Apartments with Parking seem to have a flat rate of £100 p/m for the parking spot, I suppose no free lunch, don't know is it worth it to bring over a car that might only be used a couple of weekends a month.

Thanks for help.

Just got to find the time to get viewing now, not easy over here.
There's an online Council Tax Band checking service here. Council tax is based on how much the property was worth in 1991. You can see the range of values per tax band here.

As for the car...unless you need it for work, I don't think it'd be worth the heartache. The difference between transport in most of Ireland and in London is unreal. If you're only likely to use it the odd weekend I reckon you'd be better off signing up for one of the car timeshare services like zipcar and use public transport for the rest.
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20-03-2012, 14:47   #6
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Originally Posted by bb1 View Post
The Rightmove website seems very good. Spent Thursday evening saving a lot of Properties that had potential. Nearly all them seem to be through letting agents though. Some seem to good to be true, a lot have been up for over a month, so I'm a bit sceptical.
I'm afraid you're right to be sceptical - you can be absolutely sure that every single one of them have already been let, but the agents leave them on the website to attract punters.

Sorry!
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20-03-2012, 16:04   #7
bb1
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There's an online Council Tax Band checking service here. Council tax is based on how much the property was worth in 1991. You can see the range of values per tax band here.

As for the car...unless you need it for work, I don't think it'd be worth the heartache. The difference between transport in most of Ireland and in London is unreal. If you're only likely to use it the odd weekend I reckon you'd be better off signing up for one of the car timeshare services like zipcar and use public transport for the rest.
Regarding the Council Tax, what happens with Properties built after 1991? There's no rule of thumb anyway for number of Bedrooms/Size and amount of Tax paid?

The car wouldn't be used for work at all, just a hobby, I'd only plan on using it for Trackday's and an odd scenic drive. Living over here now it would be a crying shame not to make use of it's numerous Race Tracks. It's something I'm going to have to weigh up, don't want it costing me a fortune to store it most of the time.

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I'm afraid you're right to be sceptical - you can be absolutely sure that every single one of them have already been let, but the agents leave them on the website to attract punters.

Sorry!
That's what I was afraid of.
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20-03-2012, 17:41   #8
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Originally Posted by bb1 View Post
The Rightmove website seems very good. Spent Thursday evening saving a lot of Properties that had potential. Nearly all them seem to be through letting agents though. Some seem to good to be true, a lot have been up for over a month, so I'm a bit sceptical.
I'm afraid you're right to be sceptical - you can be absolutely sure that every single one of them have already been let, but the agents leave them on the website to attract punters.

Sorry!
I've found this any time we start looking for a new place. My first pass through the websites is to clear our the crap. Subsequent passes are usually more fruitful though
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23-03-2012, 18:56   #9
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Whats the story with Craigslist? Are all the properties on here scams because the prices seem to good to be true.
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26-03-2012, 16:42   #10
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Whats the story with Craigslist? Are all the properties on here scams because the prices seem to good to be true.

Some of them are. Ultimately, it's buyer beware on public sites and if it's too good to be true it generally is. If you see a place in central London, 2 beds, all mod cons etc. for £800 a month then you can sort of guess it's not legit.

Personally, I would use gumtree and filter for personal ads on rental properties - you can somtimes get lucky on there..Good luck!
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26-03-2012, 19:25   #11
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Originally Posted by supernova84 View Post
Whats the story with Craigslist? Are all the properties on here scams because the prices seem to good to be true.

Some of them are. Ultimately, it's buyer beware on public sites and if it's too good to be true it generally is. If you see a place in central London, 2 beds, all mod cons etc. for £800 a month then you can sort of guess it's not legit.

Personally, I would use gumtree and filter for personal ads on rental properties - you can somtimes get lucky on there..Good luck!
Prices come down once you are off the tube network. Places like Herne Hill which are no more than 10 mins from Victoria and Blackfriars, 20 mins from King's Cross on the National Rail and have a good park, some nice pubs.

The real scam with letting agents is the cost of reference fees.

I will give anyone my word that I am in employment and owe no money. If they wish to doubt that then feel free to check but why should I be expected to pay £200 each for me and the missus for the landlord to have this level of protection.

London estate agents are involved in a level of dodgy charging that a D4 Celtic Tiger era one could only ever have dreamt of.
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26-03-2012, 19:43   #12
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Prices come down once you are off the tube network. Places like Herne Hill which are no more than 10 mins from Victoria and Blackfriars...
...but the trains get very infrequent outside of peak times. In my experience, not having easy access to a tube station is more hassle than it's worth.
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27-03-2012, 00:57   #13
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...but the trains get very infrequent outside of peak times. In my experience, not having easy access to a tube station is more hassle than it's worth.
I wouldn't agree, I'm in Beckenham, a bit further out than Herne Hill but on the same Southeastern train lines. Trains run every 20/30mins right up to the last one, which leaves Charing Cross at almost midnight.
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27-03-2012, 00:58   #14
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I wouldn't agree, I'm in Beckenham, a bit further out than Herne Hill but on the same Southeastern train lines. Trains run every 20/30mins...
Exactly.
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27-03-2012, 00:59   #15
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Exactly.
Difference of opinion I guess. I wouldn't consider every 20/30mins 'very infrequent'.
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