It’s Tuesday, so it’s time for another edition of What I Rent – our weekly series that goes inside people’s rented homes.
Last week we were in Shepherds Bush, with couple Liv and Kieran, who pay £1,525 a month for their two-bedroom flat.
This time around we’re still in London, but a touch further west, with Michael, 37, his fiancé, Leo, 39, and their dog, Cookie.
Michael works as an exhibition director, while Leo is a general manager at Nando’s.
They rent a one-bed flat in Richmond, where Michael has lived for eight years.
We chatted with Michael about what the couple rent.
Hi, Michael! How much do you and Leo pay to live here?
Rent is £1,400 pcm, council tax is £180 pcm, and gas and electricity is £120 pcm.
And what do you get for what you pay?
A one-bedroom flat with one bathroom.
Do you think you have a good deal?
We feel we have a good deal for the area we live in. Ideally, we would love a second bedroom.
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Whereabouts is your home based? What do you think of the area?
Our home is based in central Richmond, six minutes from the station and one street away from the River Thames.
We love living in Richmond, we feel spoilt to have Richmond Hill, Richmond Park and Kew Gardens all within walking distance.
The area is super dog friendly. The Quadrant main street and nearby roads have eclectic shops, casual and upscale dining, and performances at Richmond Theatre.
London is a 20-minute train ride into Waterloo via National Rail or we can take the District Line.
So we aren’t too far from the city, but far enough to feel like we are in a village town, albeit a very busy one in summer, being a haven for tourists.
How did you find this property?
Through our real estate, Featherstone Leigh. I have exclusively used them since we moved to Richmond.
How have you made the flat feel like home?
I love interior design. I like monochrome, which features heavily throughout our flat.
I tend to buy quirky items from brands such as; Jonathan Adler and The House of Beau. I also love interior designer Jimmie Martin and have one of his Naughty Angels, which is a great talking piece.
We have a lot of lovely coffee table books from Assouline and Taschen and all of our plants are from Bridge and Hill in Richmond and make the place feel homier.
For me it’s important to make your place represent who you are as a person. I travel a lot for work, so coming home is my oasis where I can turn off and feel relaxed surrounded by interiors that make me feel zen.
Have you found it difficult to decorate when renting? Is your landlord happy with you doing bits?
Our landlord has been great and allows us to do what we want. He knows we treat the place with kindness and look after it for him.
Do you feel like you have enough space?
When we first moved in, it was great. But I’m a collector of interiors and it is getting to the point our conversations as a couple are discussing what’s next in terms of homes. We would love a second room.
However, we love where we live, so it’s a compromise.
Are there any problems with the flat you have to deal with?
None at all.
Do you have plans to move again any time soon?
It’s a discussion that is taking place. Our lease isn’t up until August, so we will see.
And what about buying a place?
My fiancé owns a place! Right now, we are focused on getting married. We are both expats having a destination wedding in Lake Como, Italy.
Our focus is on paying for the wedding first and then we will look to buy.
Congrats! Sounds dreamy. 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!).
This article contains placements with affiliate links. We may earn a small commission on purchases made through one of these links on these placements.
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