What I Rent: Amy, £500 a month for a maisonette in Leicestershire

Londoners know that renting or buying a home is far cheaper up North.

We’re reminded of this every time our friends decide to finally leave the city or we look at what’s considered ‘cheap’ in London (spoiler: it’s still more than what people are paying outside the capital).

But it’s still helpful to have a reminder of what exactly your rent gets you around the UK, so you can have a more realistic sense of whether you should pack up your stuff and ditch London entirely.

That’s part of why we do our weekly series, What I Rent, which goes inside people’s rented properties, shows what renters get for what they pay, and chats with them about the reality of renting.

This time around we’re chatting with Amy, 27, a textiles designer for Next living in Leicestershire.

She rents a maisonette solo, along with her cat, Hermione.

Hey, Amy! How much do you pay to live here?

I pay £500 a month on rent and around £120 on bills (gas/water/electric/internet).

And what do you get for what you pay?

My home is classed as a maisonette spread across three levels! I have six rooms in total. And the toilet is separate to the bathroom.

Do you feel like you have a good deal?

I think I have a very good deal, yes. For the size and age of the property, plus central village location, I love it!

How did you find the maisonette?

I found it on Rightmove.

How have you made it feel like home?

There are many ways I’ve made my place feel like home. This includes putting my own personal style into the interior furnishings, painting the walls and having a little garden in the front yard.

As a Homeware designer, it’s impossible to not put my stamp on the place! I’ve loved working with what I’ve got. For example, the old wooden beams look great with a painted backdrop and the kitchen hasn’t been refitted since the 1950s but it’s my exact style as I love a bit of a retro feel. The cupboards are a beautiful ochre tone! I also love my sash windows.

Have you found it difficult to decorate when renting?

My landlady has been very open with me about what I can and can’t do within the property. I can paint the walls and hang things on the wall.

Do you feel like you have enough space?

I think I would always love more space as I always have bigger and bolder ideas for interior spaces but for now, I’m very comfortable!

Are there any problems with the home you have to deal with?

Heat! My bedroom is in the attic and it gets so warm up there!

The flooring isn’t great either – it’s quite uneven as it’s an old property and the carpets need an update. I prefer stripped back flooring and floorboards styled with cosy rugs.

Do you have plans to move again soon?

I will eventually move when the time is right – I do love this property so no plans on moving just yet. I’ve been here for over two years already.

Do you want to own a place some day or are you happy to rent?

I am currently saving for my own home, so some day I would like my own place. I have too many ideas so I won’t rent forever!

Shall we take a look around?

What I Rent is a weekly series that’s out every Tuesday at 10am.

Check back next week to have another nose around a rented property.

How to get involved in What I Rent

What I Rent is Metro.co.uk’s weekly series that takes you inside the places people are renting, to give us all a better sense of what’s normal and how much we should be paying.

If you fancy taking part, please email [email protected] You’ll need to take pictures of your kitchen, living room, bathroom, and bedroom, plus a few photos of you in your bedroom or living area.

Make sure you get permission from your housemates! You’ll also need to be okay with sharing how much you’re paying for rent, as that’s pretty important.

We’re not just after the prettiest places out there, by the way. We want the reality of renting, so if you’re currently renting a place you hate, we’d love to see that too (and sympathise greatly!).

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