Student Accommodation Tips

PropertyGuru Editorial Team
Renting a Home Guide: Students
Students are coming from every corner leaving their comfort zones seeking higher education opportunities. Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for a student to fall prey to a bad lease, nightmare-ish housemates, an evil landlord and an apartment that always needs fixing. Students aren’t to blame (most of the time) for these circumstances as it is most likely their first time living out on their own. These are some need to know stuff to help you hinder these situations:
Go 5% lower than asking price
It isn’t unreasonable to request for a small reduction in rent as this is after all for students. A 5% reduction in rent couldn’t possibly sting so much as the tenancy term for students are for long periods. Students don’t earn a basic salary and are dependent on either loans, scholarships or their parents. Students are usually good tenant prospects as they won’t leave till their studies are over and that usually takes up to 3 years or more. Try not to get too excited to sign off that lease just to get it over and done with. Take your time negotiating the best price for you using research of the price range for the rentals in the area.
Don’t skim through the lease
Don’t sign the lease just because you want to secure the property. Actually read each line of the lease so you know what you’re getting into. What if your rent is late for some reason? Is there going to be a crazy-high late fee involved? What happens if the landlord suddenly has to pay more in taxes or the maintenance costs for the house gets unruly? Can he hike up your rent to make up for it? There are all kinds of things that can be in that lease you’re about to sign, so make sure you know what you are getting yourself in to.
Roommates/ Housemates do Matter
When you’re filling out your rental agreement, make sure you ask if you can also list any and all roommates that you’re going to have. Be sure to get a background on each and every one of them because everyone whose name is on that lease with their signature is just as responsible as the next one. So if there’s damage done, you don’t end up carrying the burden of it. If someone decides to move before the lease is up, you won’t get caught having to cover their rent. Also do you prefer sociable housemates or introvert ones? All this will matter in the long run as living is a house with other people there is a need for shared responsibility.
Securing your deposit
In Malaysia there is a basic understanding of how much deposit needs to be paid when renting a home and this is usually determined by the landlord. Try to pay the least amount possible and ensure that you have a receipt showing what you paid. Your deposit will be used if there are damages to the property. So you best make sure you inspect the apartment thoroughly to note any pre-existing damages. When you move out, do another inspection. Try to get the landlord to do both of these inspections with you so as to maintain the transparency of the terms.
The End of the Lease
Talk to your landlord when the end of your lease is nearing. If you are planning on staying, let him know. You may get lucky and be able to procure a small discount for loyalty. Also, here’s a little known tip. Scout other properties for rent in town. Are there lots of them? Be sure to bring this up to your landlord. Why? You may be able to get a good discount by choosing to stay his tenant instead of moving elsewhere – especially if you have been a good tenant. Chances are, he doesn’t want to go through the process of finding another tenant if he doesn’t have to. Finding a good tenant is even harder than finding a new home to rent.
1) Non Resident Guidelines, UiTM
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