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What costs can you expect as a renter?

Author: With both once-off and ongoing payments part of the rental experience, it’s smart to familiarise yourself with the costs involved.

While you won’t have costs like stamp duty and council rates to worry about, there are still expenses to budget for.

Option Fee (if applicable)
An Option Fee is sometimes required when applying for a rental property. This fee is included as part of an application to cover the cost of a credit check and other processing fees.

Rent in advance
You will be required to pay a rental advance before moving into your rental property. The rent advance amount can vary, but it is usually a safe bet to assume it will be your first four weeks of rent.

A bond is a once off security payment that protects the owner in the event of damage to property or unpaid rent. It is usually the equivalent of four weeks rent and is deposited with a central Bond Administrator through the Department of Commerce. This money will be returned to you at the conclusion of your lease, less any damage deductions that may have occurred during your tenancy.

Rental payment
Your rental payments are an ongoing cost that last the duration of your tenancy. The payment cycles vary, but most commonly you’ll be required to pay on a fortnightly or monthly basis. The rental amount is dependent on the property type, quality of premise and location.

During a tenancy you will be required to pay for household utility (electricity, gas and also water in some instances) costs. These bills are received quarterly and vary in amount based on consumption volumes during the three month period. You may also be required to pay a once off connection fee for these utilities. If you are on a tight budget, look into ways to reduce your energy consumption.

Contents insurance, while sometimes an optional cost, is an imperative one. Insurance is paid annually and covers your personal belongings in the case of damage or loss. The price of your insurance depends on how extensive the coverage you choose is, with different types and levels available.

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