House Renting Essentials


The lease for the house rented by me and my housemates is ending next week, thus recently we’ve been busy going through potential flats to stay in for the next few years. As we are preparing to move into the place we settled on, many issues began to surface and plague us – from the lack of certain basic necessities to rooming arrangements, etc. And as a way of reminding myself not to commit the same mistakes again, I thought I’ll share a few pointers on house moving just so that people who stumble upon this post might find it useful.

1. Location

“The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.” – George Bernard Shaw

In most cases, everyone will have different notions of how much distance to deem as far or near. In this light, it is recommended that every housemate visit the location of rental at least once, at the very least, to get a feel of how far the house is from public transport / carpark. If not possible, someone should record a video to approximate said distance, preferably using an action camera or a fisheye lens (if recording from smartphone).

2. Space, ventilation and feel


How large is each room and how many people will be staying in it? How large is the kitchen with respect to each housemate’s culinary requirements? How large is the living area for everyone to not feel claustrophobic? How hot is the house during a sunny day? These are all the questions that should be asked when visiting places for rent. There might not be a quantifiable answer, but it is important to get a general sense of how each housemate feels about these issues.

3. Make a checklist of basic necessities

Too often we take for granted many basic household necessities in our daily lives, only to complain about them when we move to a new housing environment. The following checklist might look obvious to you, but we actually did miss a few things.

  • Ceiling fans
  • Room lights
  • Air conditioning
  • Window curtains
  • Fridge
  • Washing machine / dryer

Do request for these optional items if necessary:

  • More cupboards
  • More bed frames
  • Microwave / Oven

In addition, the following should be checked before moving in:

  • Are the locks of each door in the house working?
  • This includes the main entrance door and the toilets
  • Is each power point in the house working?
  • Are the household appliances listed above, if not newly purchased, in good working condition?

4. Internet

This is a painful one especially if the house requires additional setup for fibre speed; it’s both a time and money penalty on new renters. Do arrange in such a way that internet connection can be set up not too long after moving in, and look for internet service providers who offers waiving of optical network installation fees. (Singtel currently has an online promotion!) Also, take note of where the position of the internet port should be, in order to place the router at the optimal location for the entire house to get good wi-fi access.

5. Help the main tenant


Many times, it will be the main tenant of the house who liaises with the agent / landlord for the above issues. It might seem trivial, but it’s really not – these are mundane things that takes a toll on the main tenant’s energy. Do offer help in the above areas, it definitely eases the burden on the main tenant and improves housemate relationship.

Moving house is really not an easy feat when you have these issues to look out for. Hope this will help someone! 🙂


One thought on “House Renting Essentials

  1. Remember to change the door lock after moving in. I’ll normally change the padlock even if the landlord has provided one. There is no reason the landlord need to enter your premises when you are not around, since there is an implied term in any tenancy agreement that the tenant shall have “quiet enjoyment” of the premises. If you don’t change your padlock, you can’t be sure that the previous tenant won’t come in and steal your things.

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