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Securing housing in Canberra is defo an experience

By LSD - 23 July 2010 13

Having been enduring the fun times of securing housing in Canberra I am interested in learning strategies from others in the interest of establishing a repository of shared learning for others in the same boat.

Any info or tips would be greatly appreciated.

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13 Responses to
Securing housing in Canberra is defo an experience
georgesgenitals 8:57 am 26 Jul 10

LSD said :

gsgs#6 – definitely referring to renting… I’d love to buy… but it’s quite far to commute for any properties I’ve looked into!

So I’m going for the renting until I can marry my way into local high society…

even share housing is incredibly bureaucratic now… it’s like going for a job with ASIO… I haven’t experienced any requests for psychometric testing yet, but it wouldn’t have surprised me.

Best of luck, then. Hopefully you can find a place that suits your needs.

Morelia 1:37 am 26 Jul 10

I’ll definitely second #7. If you can offer a little over the price they have advertised it just makes you stand out that little bit more… maybe enough to get you a home when you’re living out of the car. I’m so glad I’m in a stable place; I got very sick of playing the rental roulette.

LSD 10:21 am 24 Jul 10

gsgs#6 – definitely referring to renting… I’d love to buy… but it’s quite far to commute for any properties I’ve looked into!

So I’m going for the renting until I can marry my way into local high society…

even share housing is incredibly bureaucratic now… it’s like going for a job with ASIO… I haven’t experienced any requests for psychometric testing yet, but it wouldn’t have surprised me.

Jurls 10:07 pm 23 Jul 10

My advice is to go for private rental and keep an eye on the Canberra Times as well as Allhomes. The property agents are a right pain, they want copies of 100 points of ID and some of them evidently want copies of your bank statements as well as payslips. I was really unhappy about supplying copies of my driving licence, passport etc etc randomly to agents just on the offchance that I might get the property!! We didn’t even attend the open home with the agents that wanted our bank statements.
Take prefilled application forms with you, there is a ridiculous amount of demand for rentals, hand them in at the open home. 😀
Fortunately, we were offered a private rental found through the CT, which is the route I’ll be going again if/as and when I have to.

cleo 9:22 pm 23 Jul 10

Aurelius # 8 No

Aurelius 4:01 pm 23 Jul 10

Isn’t it illegal to make photocopies of photo licences?
It was illegal in NSW to photocopy licences before they included photos.

Amanda Hugankis 2:54 pm 23 Jul 10

Make yourself known to the agent when you arrive, and ask them lots of questions about the place. If you can, be the last to leave with them before you hand them your application (they seem to like it if you turn up with everything they want then & there – payslip copies, copies of driver’s license, covering letter introducing yourself, written references, etc.).

Definitely dress neatly. I’d second LSD’s comments about not telling them why you need to move – best to make it seem like you could care less, and that you’ve chosen to move, and chosen to apply for this place … rather than NEED.

Failing all that – its well known that you offer an extra $5-10 a week, and it can often make the difference, especially if all applicants are well dressed, caring and sharing, have good refs, etc. It might not be the most palatable thing to do, but if you’re getting desperate and need to get your life settled … it might be what makes the difference.

georgesgenitals 2:49 pm 23 Jul 10

To the OP – are trying to secure housing through renting or buying? Some good info here about renting, but buying is a totally different kettle of dolphins.

PeaJay 2:05 pm 23 Jul 10

I had a similar experience interstate a couple of years ago, trying to find rental at the beginning of the Uni year just to make life more interesting.
I definitely found the schmooze tactic the winner. After some ridiculous number of attempts, the 5 minutes of time spent chatting to the agent put us at the top of the prospective tenant list.
Some agents have their rental tenancy application forms available on the internet, or from their office prior. If you can have this with you, pre-filled out when you turn up to the inspection, that seems to be a big help too.

JC 2:00 pm 23 Jul 10

Interesting, I always thought the owner made the choice site unseen. Well that is what happens with my place anyway. Agent gives me a list of applicants, makes a few, repeat few recomendations but in the end I choose. I select based on rental history and income.

LSD 1:45 pm 23 Jul 10

It’s interesting. I’m always neatly kitted out due to my work, but it was weird to see estate agents sizing up people appearance wise before they even got to the front door… I found it helpful to make clear that I was only interested in moving for a change, as any indication of being on a ticking clock to get somewhere organised quickly resulted in a rather nasty attitude change to let me know where I stood…

definitely schmoozing is a winner, they love that. Paperwork being spot on critical too. Bit tough getting away from work though, as it’s another stress for bosses to put the squeeze on.

I’ll never move again if I have any choice in it. Things have certainly changed from when I moved here for uni a decade ago… hoo boy.

Spoono 1:25 pm 23 Jul 10

I found the key is to be the first person to the real estate office after the open house with all the supporting paperwork filled out.

johnboy 1:12 pm 23 Jul 10

Wear a jacket and collared shirt to open houses (jeans OK if clean and untorn).

If you can take an attractive member of the opposite sex as your girlfriend/boyfriend (as appropriate) then that’s good too.

Scmooze the agent. It’s no longer about whether you’d be a decent tenant, you’re competing. Compliment them on their appearance, engage them in conversation and laugh at their stupid jokes. Make them think you’re the most interesting person in the world. Ask them how they’re day is going etc.

It’s all lies, but all the applicants are liars too, it’s a competitive market here.

You might feel dirty, but you’re much more likely to get a place.

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