Where does one look for available apartments in London?
October 2, 2006 3:37 AM   Subscribe

Where should I look to find flats available to let in London?

I've looked at Loot.com and london.craigslist.org. Where do you search for property?
posted by Human Flesh to Computers & Internet (15 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: I asked a very similar question here. I found my place through gumtree. That and moveflat.com seem to be much more used in london than craigslist. (Although if you're tempted to rent a double room in Norbiton sharing with two romanians, don't.)
posted by handee at 3:45 AM on October 2, 2006

Best answer: Find a property dot com.

The market moves so quickly that I'd suggest using an estate agent if you can afford the extra expense.
posted by slimepuppy at 4:02 AM on October 2, 2006

Best answer: I've found Gumtree.com to be very good.
posted by ukdanae at 4:08 AM on October 2, 2006

Gumtree and moveflat.com. http://clickflatshare.co.uk/ is also a good one.
posted by Happy Dave at 4:14 AM on October 2, 2006

Are you in London yet? Try visiting the area you're looking to live in and looking around. I may be able to give some recommendations for estate agents if you're thinking south-west of the city.
posted by randomination at 4:26 AM on October 2, 2006

loot and gumtree.

for lettings, avoid agents like the plague. unless you somehow manage to find a flat through them and then contact the landlord directly (which is a bit dodgy).
posted by ascullion at 4:46 AM on October 2, 2006

ascullion: I don't want to drag this off topic but my gf rented privately and her landlord was an out-and-out crook and liar.

We now rent with a long-established local estate agent who has only one branch and have been in the area for 40 years and they are honest and generally efficient.

ymmv as ever.
posted by randomination at 4:56 AM on October 2, 2006

I like rightmove.
posted by teleskiving at 6:56 AM on October 2, 2006

I just let a flat in London a couple of weeks ago. I looked on Findaproperty.com mentioned above and also Primelocation.

You'll find that a lot of the flats on these sites are already taken. What I did was speak to the agent that showed me one flat I found on Primelocation and told her exactly what I wanted. She called me a couple of hours later with a couple of things to see and I took one the following day. She worked for Hamptons, for what it's worth.

When I asked this question I got some good answers which you may find helpful. One person on the thread advised avoiding Foxtons if you go the agent route - I have had this advice confirmed by numerous people.
posted by meerkatty at 9:26 AM on October 2, 2006

meerkatty's right - foxton's are lizards, and once they have your telephone number you will get called and called and called.
posted by handee at 10:57 AM on October 2, 2006

Response by poster: Randomination, I live in London (Hoxton to be exact). I plan to move farther east.

What are some of the problems people have when dealing with letting agents or landlords?
posted by Human Flesh at 2:32 PM on October 2, 2006

I've had the best experiences with estate agents that do lettings but also sell flats and houses. This is as distinct from lettings agencies that just deal in a very high turnover of flats for rent. It probably is a bit more expensive this way.

Oh, and yes, Foxtons are evil. As a general rule, any estate agency that looks like it's charging its clients extra in order to pay for fancy furnishings for its own offices (or for stupid custom-painted Minis for its employees to drive around in) is almost certainly doing just that.
posted by game warden to the events rhino at 2:55 PM on October 2, 2006

HF: Gosh, in a nutshell, keeping the whole of people's deposit for trivial reasons, lack of maintenance, turning up without prior notice, renting out a windowless basement with no fire exit as a "smart single"...

Shelter is a good place to find out your rights. You don't have many in this country but at least you have some.

Come the revolution, Foxtons estate agents' still-living disembodied heads will be repeatedly crushed beneath the wheels of their own company cars, which will all be filled with vomit and their puréed limbs.
posted by randomination at 3:01 AM on October 3, 2006

I used find a property when moving to south london. We rented through an agency, who did very little apart from broker the deal. Our landlord, however, was probably the best that we'd had. Very nice.

YMMV, naturally.
posted by triv at 3:22 AM on October 3, 2006

Oh, to answer your second question. Make sure you understand the contract that you're signing, especially notice periods and clauses which relate to your deposit. Carpet cleaning is a standard clause and can be expensive.

Also, as soon as you move in, ask for a detailed itinerary of everything in the flat/house. Note down every mark/speck/mouldy patch to the finest detail. Get that amended detail back to your landlord asap and retain a copy for your records. Have them sign a receipt form for this.

Other than that, if you can get the chance to meet your landlord before signing a contract, trust your gut instinct.

And good luck!
posted by triv at 3:38 AM on October 3, 2006 [1 favorite]

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