Owl & Co aim to answer the most commonly asked questions and give advice to people who are planning to rent a property. Please take a moment to read through this, so that you are aware of the procedures for private renting.

    Before deciding to rent a property you need consider the following:

  • Budget
  • Location/ Accessibility
  • Size and Quality
  • Furnished or Unfurnished


If you’re thinking about renting a private house or flat, you will need to make sure you can afford it. You can do this by writing a budget plan that takes into account your income and your expenses (see below). Once you have done this you will be able to see how much you have left for rent.

You will also need to consider the other costs associated with renting a property. Most rental properties do not include household bills in the rent. In these cases, tenants are responsible for paying costs such as the Council Tax, Utility bills (gas, electricity and water), TV licence and contents insurance. Feel free to ask your agency, landlord or proviso tenants to provide estimates for these bills after once you have viewed a property so that you can make an informed decision as to whether you can afford to rent it.

You will also need to consider one off costs such as the agency fee, the tenancy deposit and advance rent.

Budget Calculator

Location/ Accessibility

Even in the same town or area, properties with similar specifications can vary in rental price depending on their location. If the property is in an area you are not familiar with, you should do your own research and take into account factors that may be important to you such as accessibility to transport, shops or schools.

Size and Quality

In the urban areas the most common properties are two or three bedroom Terraced Houses, Bungalows or Detached Houses some of which have two reception rooms. Most houses also have their own driveway and private garden. These factors add value to the property so the rent will be higher.

Some of the houses will have a difference in price even they are the same size and in a similar location due to the condition and quality of the property. Newly refurbished properties are usually more expensive than less modern properties.

Furnished or Unfurnished

Some areas such as Loughton, Woodford Green, Hainault, Barkingside, Gants Hill, Redbridge and Newbury Park often have unfurnished properties although these do still often have white goods (washing machine, fridge and in some cases a dish-washer). Check with the agency to find out if white goods are included.

Furnished properties commonly include basic furniture: beds, wardrobes, sofa and dining table. However, this varies from property to property so always ask your agent when viewing which furniture is included in the rent.