When deciding to rent a flat by yourself, you have two choices: either check on any of the webpages described below or go to see an estate agent.
In any case, rent is paid one calendar month in advance and a deposit will be required. Ensure that you get a receipt of this payment to get your money back. You will sign a contract for a period of time, but you can be released from it before if it is specified in the contract.
See that you will have to add gas, electricity, telephone, TV license, bills, etc. to the rental price, unless specified in the contract. You should inquire whether these bills have to be paid on a month-to-month basis that requires you to read the electricity, water, gas etc. meter every month, or if a balanced payment plan is available, i.e., paying a set price every month and doing a recalculation at the end of the year. Balanced payments are recommended particularly for heating bills as they cost little to nothing in the summer but may result in unexpectedly high monthly bills during the winter months.
Moreover, when you move into the flat, it is recommended to sign an inventory, meticulously detailed, to confirm the state of the accommodation and furniture (if furnished). This is also your guarantee in case anything is damaged. For anything broken, or for all further improvements, you will need to ask the landlord. Unlike when buying, you theoretically need to ask the authorisation for all future changes that you wish to make to the accommodation.
Most rooms, flats, apartments or houses are advertised on accommodation websites. You can search for a particular type of accommodation or set up alerts for your specific requirements.
In all Latin America is common to hang white papers on the façade buildings announcing the property rental with a contact number directly handwritten on it.
Other sources include the accommodation sections of newspapers, advertisements in shops, college notice boards, etc. You may also find available accommodation through word of mouth.
Accommodation agencies or letting agencies are commercial organisations that help you find private rented accommodation, although they will ask for a service fee, usually equal to a monthly rent.
Nowadays, most of the rental properties in Lima are found online. The best websites for starting a search are:
Printed versions of local and national newspapers are a good source for searching property ads and real estate, both in small cities and the country capital, Lima. The following ones are Perú's and Lima's main publications:
A rental contract is only valid in a written form and it should have two copies: one for the tenant, and another one for the landlord.
The contract should specify:
Upon moving in, you should ask and sign an inventory document describing the complete furniture included, documenting the condition of the apartment and the technical condition of the electronic equipment, as well as the readings of the meters for water, electricity, gas etc. This document should be prepared in two copies and signed by the tenant and the landlord.
Notice that unless specified in the rental contract, it can be terminated with one-month notice. The landlord can terminate the contract only in a limited number of cases, most notably, if the tenant has damaged the rental property or uses the property for purposes not specified in the contract.
Information about of your rights and your obligations as a tenant and your landlord's rights and obligations can be found on the "Finding Accommodation, Flatsharing, Hostels in Lima" guide section.
Before you sign a rental contract, it is very recommended to visit the property that you are interested in. In addition to gaining a general impression of the property you should:
When looking for a rental property, hiring a real estate agent will save you a lot of time and worry. The agent will consult you on your search, accompany you to visit each of the properties you are interested in, help with drawing up the documents for signing the contract legally and, if necessary, also consult on options for receiving a loan. The rental agent's services price may vary from agent to agent; therefore it is necessary to discuss it beforehand and sign a contract. The agent is paid only when the contract with the landlord has been signed.
Keep in mind: If the real estate agent is hired by the landlord in whose property you are interested in, the costs of the agent should be covered by the landlord.
In this case, the price for the real estate agent's service is negotiated between the landlord and the agent and it is paid once the deal has been closed and the payment of the property has been completed. Also notice that, the more expensive the property, the smaller percentage goes to the real estate agent. Sometimes, in case of rental contracts, the estate agent's service cost equals a month rental fee.
Looking for cheap accommodation in Lima isn’t easy and can be time consuming. Fortunately the times of browsing innumerable adverts, making hundreds of phone calls and visiting dozen of houses belong to the past: with Uniplaces now you can look for your room comfortably sitting at home. You can pick a room in a shared home with other expats, a studio flat if you want more privacy, or you can team up with other friends and rent an entire apartment just for yourselves.
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