Being the sort of free spirits we are, slightly stressy but flexible all the same, we are about to take the plunge and move to Cornwall in mid July….with no friends in the county but some close by in Devon, no idea of where we should live other than close to Io’s new job and no concept of what it’ll be like in deepest darkest winter. Excellent, just the sort of challenge I used to thrive on in my globe trotting single days but now with the added complication of a family and some major financial considerations.
We shot down to Cornwall this week to take a look at some rental properties in the hopes of finding somewhere that would feel right for all of us. Perhaps it’s the area we are searching in or maybe it’s the time of year, but we weren’t exactly thrilled with what was on offer, especially after comparing the rental properties of the same price range to Mid Wales.
As we are essentially a single income family at present, our options are rather limited. Most of the places we viewed were on A roads or main roads for those who dont work on the British road system, which means cars and trucks whizzing by your front door all day and sometimes all night depending on where you are.
We do tend to prefer the quainter older properties, but these come with their own set of issues, namely damp, tiny spaces and no parking but the bungalow houses available have absolutely no soul and are largely made of concrete slab although some of those did have relatively private gardens and were detached so a bit similar to what I am used to back home in Kiwiland. However, we did find a terrace cottage set way back of the main rd with a large garden area and relatively new kitchen that was the pick of the bunch, the previous tenants very friendly cat was still around and I wanted to adopt it, although apparently we aren’t allowed pets?
What I was rather incensed with was the fact that the letting agents for this property are asking a £450 letting fee! In comparison to other agencies this is exorbitant and adding this on top of 6 weeks deposit, 1 month rent in advance and moving costs for furniture and utilities how the heck do some people manage to get into accommodation? People are struggling to get on the ownership property ladder due to the reccession so in turn more and more of us are renting instead, so letting agencies can take advantage of high demand and short supply to pull this kind of stunt.
Quite frankly although this is the only property we saw that we would consider living in, I am loath to pay a fee that high, and for what? The privilege of the letting agency dealing with us instead of a landlord? Basically you are charging the tenant for the services you provide to the landlord, on top of council tax which in New Zealand I guess is the equivalent of ‘rates’ which only property owners pay, not tenants.
Still after much deliberation we have decided to go for it anyway, as we don’t have time to spend looking for our ideal place right now so if after 6 months we decide it sucks, we can always move with a little more insight of where and when is a good place to look for a new home but I think after a year of not having our own place we’re going to love it regardless.
Oh and whats Pantscake you may ask? It’s a bit of a long story involving a 4 year old and a pear cake but has since been adopted into our vocabulary and means something is a bit rubbish, also quite useful to use in place of swear words in front of little ones 🙂
Now that we’ve got a new pad….I can start obsessing about pillows, lamps and duvet covers yay more excuses to internet window shop!