Moving into a new apartment can be very exciting. After all, you’re going to get a complete change of scenery; in fact, you might even be moving into a whole new town, with exciting opportunities that have simply never been open to you before.
However, moving – and settling – into an apartment can be surprisingly punishing to your bank balance. There are so many little things that you have to carefully consider during the moving process – and you can easily imagine the frustration that will set in should you overlook one of these little things and, as a result, be left with a nasty financial sting.
Hence, we have decided to compile this thorough guide to saving money along the way – whether you will be buying or renting an apartment to live in or splashing out on one to allow others to rent it.
Weigh up different removal costs
If you are buying or renting what will be your new home, then how many items do you need moving from your current residence to this new one? Whatever the number, it might not include any furniture – if, for instance, you are leaving your parents’ home or a furnished property. Therefore, you might not need anything more than a car and a few friends to help you with moving everything.
However, you might actually have an abundance of items – including heavy furniture, such as a television and sofas – to shift. In that case, you should probably avoid over-stretching yourself; hire a van or from a removal company, don’t just stick with the car and your mates. Even if you reckon that a lot of items need to be transported, you might be able to save money by forgoing a removal company in favour of a van, as this could be sufficient for your requirements.
Nonetheless, MoneySavingExpert.com advises: “For those who are moving from one furnished property to another, you’ll probably need to enlist the help of a removal company.” So, do try to keep a sensible limit to the extent of your penny-pinching.
Turn to web companies to get free furnishings
If your new pad will be largely empty and, therefore, require you to get hold of lots of new furniture, appliances and other items, keep in mind that you could obtain them surprisingly inexpensively. In fact, hundreds of great items are daily available at no charge, thanks to web communities such as Freegle and Freecycle. This will probably have you asking: “So, where’s the catch?”
You could end up spending a lot of time fruitlessly searching for one, as it doesn’t exist. Web communities work through allowing people to offer their unwanted items to local communities. That’s certainly good for the environment, as these items are not simply deposited on landfills. It can also be good for your financial health. Furnishing staples like beds, sofas, TV sets and fridges can be picked up from web communities – and you might even come across more specialist but also useful goods such as ornaments or iPads.
Still, consider that, as you look through what web communities are offering near your fresh apartment, you could stumble across some “moth-bitten tat”, as MoneySavingExpert.com calls it. Getting the best goods from these communities could require you to spend time thoroughly researching, not to mention maintaining a careful lookout.
Trim potentially hundreds of pounds on gas or electricity bills
You might want to resist simply settling for the energy supplier whose services were in place when you moved in. Of course, those services could “just so happen” to be the most suitable for your own needs, too. However, it’s easily possible that, by sticking with them, you would be essentially throwing away what would add up to hundreds of pounds a year.
Therefore, don’t be afraid to look at alternative options. Changing to the best option could be as simple as contacting your existing supplier and asking to be switched to a different tariff that they offer. However, even switching to a completely different provider would likely be worthwhile. This is because your own choice of provider and tariff, decided on following your own thorough research, is likely to be much less expensive than the tariff you were placed on as you moved into the apartment.
Here’s another quick tip: upon moving in, take meter readings. This would be good for checking that you are not still paying for the gas and electricity usage of the apartment’s previous owner.
Tread carefully before investing in a buy to let apartment
Stories about millionaires operating massive portfolios of buy to let properties could lead you to think that joining these people in buy to let investment would be a good idea. However, the success of such a project can depend on a wide array of factors. This is MONEY reports experts advising making such investment for income rather than short-term capital growth.
So, the prices that you pay for properties and at which you can later sell those properties shouldn’t necessarily be at the forefront of your mind. You should instead think primarily about the yields and how they differ between properties. A property’s yield is the annual rent that you would receive as a percentage of the buying price. Thus, a property costing £200,000 and bringing £10,000 in rent has a yield of 5%.
You could find that certain areas have properties offering particularly high yields. Buy to let Leeds properties commonly have yields of more than 8%. That city also has a market of many students seeking apartments. With assistance from Flambard Williams’ investment property consultants, you could acquire relatively lucrative apartments in the West Yorkshire city – and other major settlements including Manchester, Liverpool and Bradford.
Buying and letting an attractive apartment in Leeds in particular could help provide a strong foundation for your property investment journey… and, indeed, for what could later develop into a large portfolio of apartments in locations dotted across the UK. We wish you luck.