In our continued efforts to make Londoners weep, What I Rent has ventured outside of the UK’s capital city.
Don’t be too angry at us. The people working on this series are Londoners too, so we share any pain you feel when you see a couple renting a flat all to themselves for the same price you paid for a box room in a houseshare.
This week that theme continues as we venture to Lincoln.
You know the drill. We take you inside someone’s rented property, show you all the good bits and bad bits, all to find out what people get for what they pay and get a conversation going around the renting market.
This time we’re hanging out with couple Harry, a 22-year-old software developer, and Lauren, a 23-year-old postgraduate student and part-time sports therapist.
Hey, Harry and Lauren! How much do you pay for this place?
We currently pay £695 a month on rent.
We have to pay quite a lot in electric as we have no gas in the flat, meaning we also have an electric boiler. Our council tax band is also quite low, so the bills come to about £300 a month.
And what do you get for what you pay?
We have a living room, kitchen, and two bedrooms – however we’ve converted one of them into a study which works really well for us. There is one bathroom in the property.
Do you think you have a good deal?
Our bills can be quite high, especially through the colder months, but we think that what we get is worth so much more than what we pay, so we’re very happy with it.
There is a private garage that we can park our car in, and this comes at no extra cost to us which really helps as Lincoln parking can be expensive, especially in the central location that we are in.
How did you find the flat?
We found it on Rightmove. It took us maybe two to three months of searching before finding it and as soon as we viewed it we knew we had to apply for it.
It’s been about nine months since we moved in.
Do you like where you live?
The area is very central and there are amenities all around us. We’re only a very short walk to the high street, too.
We both really love where we live. The location is so central to Lincoln, it only takes us thirty seconds to get to the high street, as well as about fifteen minutes to get to both the University and Harry’s work.
We also have a concierge in the building who is available from Monday to Friday. He’s extremely friendly and gives us any deliveries or post, as well as cleans the outside of our windows periodically.
As part of this, the flat feels really secure as not only is the concierge often manning the reception, there is a secure entry system.
The flat has ample space for all our things, and plenty of storage.
We love that it has a large balcony for us to relax on in the summer evenings.
It’s also incredibly easy to visit our families due to the proximity of the main roads.
We love our bathroom, especially the size of our bath and the fact that the bath and shower are separate. We are also very appreciative of the fact that we have a dishwasher.
Do you feel like you have enough space?
Yes, we have three big built in wardrobes that hold most of our stuff, as well as a utility room where we’ve managed to utilize the space pretty well. It’d certainly be a little less cluttered if Lauren got rid of some of her shoes, though…
What’s it like living together?
It’s really enjoyable living together. For both of us, it’s the first time we’ve lived with a partner so there’s a lot of new things that we get to do together. We’ve settled into a good routine and generally we both feel very relaxed in each other’s company.
How have you made your house feel like home?
We freshly painted the entire flat when we first moved in which made us feel like it was ours.
We’ve also made sure to hang up lots of photos and paintings that mean a lot to us, as well as put lots of candles around. There hasn’t really been a point since we moved our stuff in that either of us felt like it wasn’t our home.
Are there any major issues with the house you have to put up with?
The carpets are at the end of their life which means they sometimes look a bit marked but it isn’t really something either of us minds too much.
The street outside our flat can get noisy on the weekends and when we’ve got the window open it can get quite irritating. This is mostly because we’re quite near to a few bars and pubs.
The lack of gas in the flat was a surprise to us but we’ve managed to get around it and just accept that our electricity bill is high.
We’d like a bit more kitchen space, but we’ve managed to make the most of the space we have.
Any plans to move again?
We’ve not got any plans to move at the moment, we love this place too much!
And what about buying a place?
Harry’s only just coming up to his first full year of being full time, and Lauren hasn’t even finished her post graduate degree yet, so buying a place isn’t something we’ve discussed yet.
We certainly don’t want to leave our current flat anytime soon.
Fair play. Shall we have a look around?
What I Rent is a weekly series that’s out every Tuesday at 10am. Check back next week to have a nose around another rented property in London.
How to get involved in What I Rent
What I Rent is Metro.co.uk’s weekly series that takes you inside the places in London people are renting, to give us all a better sense of what’s normal and how much we should be paying.
If you fancy taking part, please email [email protected]
You’ll need to have pictures taken of your kitchen, living room, bathroom, and bedroom, plus a few photos of you in your room. Make sure you get permission for your housemates!
You’ll also need to be okay with sharing how much you’re paying for rent, as that’s pretty important.
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