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What I Rent: Paul and Mike, £1,350 for a flat in Tooting


 Renting in London is stressful.  It’s tricky to know how much you should be paying, what you should be expecting in return, and how long a commute you should put up with to live in a decent flat  What I Rent is a weekly Metro.co.uk series aiming to provide a bit of clarity to proceedings  Each week we take you inside someone’s rented property and look at the nitty-gritty, from what they pay to the damp in the bathroom ceiling  The idea is to get rid of the mystery surrounding trying to find a place to live in London, combating all the stories of 20-year-olds buying houses (with a load of help from their parents Did they forget to mention that bit?), the flattering real estate pictures of tiny box rooms in six bedroom houses, and the frustration of wild discrepancies in rent between flats that are pretty much identical  This week we’re hanging out with pals Paul and Mike in their rented flat in Tooting  Hey Paul! How much are you and Mike paying for this place?  It’s £1350 in total We split it straight down the middle so £675 each.  We pay about £90 each across council tax, gas, water, electric, Internet and home insurance  And what are you getting for that price?  There are two good-sized bedrooms, one slightly larger than the other In between the bedrooms is a lovely little bathroom and at the front of the flat is a large kitchen-lounge  How long have you lived there?  We’re about five months in to this place now.  What do you think of the area?  We live in Tooting, about five minutes walk from the tube station This is our second flat together in Tooting, the first being down by the train station  I think it’s fair to say that we’re both pretty happy living in Tooting. We spent the first two years here in a much shabbier, although slightly larger, place But it was more expensive, further away from the tube station and plainly not as pretty as the place we’re in now  Tooting is a solid location for both of us as we both work near stations on the Northern line, albeit on difference branches, and the door-to-door commute is about 40 mins for both of us  It’s a convenient place to live – five minutes walk from the tube station and a big Sainsbury’s It’s next to a gym, there are loads of good pubs nearby, there are two fantastic markets full of bars and restaurants and Tooting Common is awesome for those rare sunny days  Do you feel like you have enough space?  For the two of us, it’s pretty much perfect We both have a double bedroom with plenty of storage and we are yet to squabble about cupboard or fridge space!  How did you find the flat?  Mike did the honours of finding this place online It’d been on the estate agent’s website for less than a day. We were the first people to look at it and we snapped it up there and then  It’s rare to find somewhere so clean and so affordable so close to the tube station, so it was a no brainer from us to take it  What’s it like living with Mike?   This is our fourth year of sharing a place. We did a year together at uni with other housemates, so we knew what it was like living with each other before committing to our first flat  We’ve been mates for years and have a lot of the same friends, so there was no ‘stranger danger’ ahead of the move  We’ve pretty much perfected our kitchen and bathroom timings over the years which is a bonus, so we’ve got our routines spot on now  Are there any major issues with the house you have to put up with?  So far, so good!  We had a few teething issues with the old flat, but this one has been largely problem free so far  One of the bedrooms was nigh on impossible to warm up in February and March, which wasn’t particularly fun during the sub-zero nights, and the flat is toasty in the heat – but nothing a couple of fans can’t sort out  Any plans to move somewhere else?   Our tenancy runs for a year and we’re yet to make any solid plans for 2019, but we both have plans to move in with our girlfriends at some point – which we can’t do in this flat!  Have you considered buying a place?  We haven’t considered buying together but we both want to buy, it’s just a case of saving up for it  Neither of us have the luxury of being bankrolled by the bank of mum and dad, so it’ll be plenty of hard graft and saving before either of us are homeowners  Fair point. Shall we have a look around Paul and Mike’s place?   The Fix The daily lifestyle email from Metro co.uk. Find out more

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