Renting means agreeing to live in a property owned by someone else for a regular payment.

The owner of a property, also known as a landlord (or lessor), can rent out a property privately (where you have direct contact with the owner) or through a real estate agency. You as the person renting are the tenant.

When renting, the tenant has the right to ‘exclusive possession’ of the property that they are renting. This means that he or she is given permission to stay in the house and can exclude anyone from the premises including the landlord or the agent.

You will usually need to sign a lease before you start living in a rental property. It is a good idea to have a written lease with clear terms and conditions for a peaceful stay. You may be asked to pay rent in advance and a security deposit.The amount you have to pay as Security Deposit will vary regionally and can differ anywhere from one month's security deposit plus one month's advance rental, upto five months of security deposit plus one month advance rental.

Before you start looking for a property you should:

  • know which area you want a home in and what size property you need;
  • look for an area which has an easy commute
  • select a property that you know you can maintain;
  • work out and set your rental budget;
  • have a think about what you need in a property such as parking, disability access, a backyard or whether you would like to have pets; and
  • know whether you are living by yourself or sharing with others.