My Experience, Life Skills For Young People
Helping Those Moving To Independence & Start-Up
I have had the privilege of working with clients ready to leave residential adolescent homes, hostels or supported housing and preparing to take up their first tenancy, moving into their new rented home.
While this is an exciting time, for many it can be daunting with so much to do and may not have the support of parents, family members to provide assistance along the way. Therefore may rely on supporting organisation/s to provide assistance to help with this move.
There are some young people just 18 or 19 and are not aware of the many tasks that need to be undertaken prior and during the moving in process.
For example, when viewing a property it is important that you go along with one or two responsible adults or professional people that are experienced to guide you and provide the service in asking necessary and prepared questions to the landlord or housing provider that may need answering.
To check that the property looks safe and secure, that each room in the property has been viewed and assessed as liveable and in good state of health.
That there are no repairs needing attention and whether in need of any urgent decoration. If repairs need undertaking has this been made clear and will this be done before you move in.
Sometimes it has been known that if the decor is poor and you wish to do it yourself a decorating allowance has been provided, based upon so much per room. Otherwise, this should be done by the organisations professional workers and in good shape for any new tenant about to move in.
It is important that you ask and see that there is an up-to-date gas safety certificate in the property and updated every 12 months. Has the electrical appliances had safety checks, is there smoke detectors fitted and operating.
Do check that any outstanding work will be completed before you are due to commence with your tenancy. Once you have checked the property over and there is no maintenance issues or concern, then you need to check thoroughly the tenancy agreement.
This is when it is sensible to have someone that you trust and responsible that can assist you to check through the legal tenancy agreement and fully understand before signing. Two heads are often better than one.
*Understand all the contents of the tenancy agreement.
*Don’t sign anything until you are happy, satisfied and agree with it.
After signing the tenancy agreement ensure that you keep this in a safe place along with other paper work documents and that you can easily find when needed.
It is important that you receive from your landlord, housing provider contact details. Especially in case of an emergency maintenance issue that may need attention out of normal office hours an [emergency call number].
It is important that you know where to find your stopcock, water mains supply, where to find your electric and gas meters and that you take a reading from both and find out who your suppliers are.
Often the landlord or housing association will know, if not you will need to find out and inform the suppliers that you are now the new occupiers of the property, confirming the date you moved in and to provide meter readings to enable you to start with a clean slate.
Suppliers such as: gas, electricity, water suppliers, rent and others all need to be informed of your new address and for you to provide some details to set up and activate accounts and payment systems under your name.
Put together a list of service providers telephone numbers and keep safe, stored on your mobile for easy access and keep in a folder as back-up.
Many people can be shocked at their costs, bills that can occur, so pay as you go or monthly bills can be useful especially at the start, but check what is available and what suits you best.
Many of the young people I have coached and mentored have struggled financially due to being unemployed or at university or college. This is why it is important to complete a budgeting plan.
INCOME V EXPENDITURE and to monitor monthly incoming and outgoing and to keep a track of your money and make any necessary adjustments as / when needed.
It really is essential to keep records and receipts of expenditure and have a plan and to have self discipline and to maintain control.
If difficulties arise with payments, I would suggest at the earliest point to notify the supplier or company and try and negotiate a repayment plan and or see if you can change the package deal or use a cheaper tariff.
An example of this can relate to mobile phones or Sky TV packages etc.
One thing that I would provide for my clients, a shopping list of items they would need to purchase [fixtures & fittings] for their home. This was appreciated by clients, as they could see at a glance what they may need and try to get these things as and when money was available and over time.
The list is general and for guidelines and based on a 1 bedroom accommodation. Of course some properties may be partly or even fully furnished, so this list may not apply. This is based on nothing provided.
Helpful shopping list of items to purchase for your home
For your guidelines: Items would be priced based on an Argos catalogue. Many people would require initially to purchase some items through quality second hand stores or warehouse to reduce costs and to rely on other supporting networks for financial help.
It is great when you have peace of mind and you can rest comfortably and recharge your energies for the next day!
I provide inspirational quality coaching & mentoring to meet with your personal development and your support plan or programme.
“If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.”
“You can’t expect to be old and wise if you were never young and crazy.”
“Today is the first day of the rest of my life.”