What’s your favourite bit of your job:
I love driving so visiting properties around Bristol is a big plus for me, I’ve learnt my way around the City pretty well. I’ve recently started marketing and as an Interior Designer, this is what I enjoy the most, photographing properties in their best light and the best part of it all, floorplans, so therapeutic.
Favourite thing to do on a day off:
I live in Central Bristol so I’m lucky enough to be able to stroll to most places, my favourite thing about living in the city centre is the endless options of restaurants. My favourite way to spend a Bristol weekend is going out for food with my loved ones and then walking around the Harbourside, especially in the evenings. Sundays, I dedicate to myself, you really won’t catch me outside on this day, very much a self-care day, a day to really relax and unwind and get ready for a new week ahead.
Best Bristol restaurant:
I won’t stop raving about it; Miller & Carter down at College Green is incredible! The location, the interior, the service, and the food, I really can’t fault it, every single time I’ve been there it’s chef’s kiss.
I tried out Batida recently on Whiteladies Road and the food hit just right. If you ever give it a try, go easy, if you’re like me who eats with their eyes the options are irresistible, but you won’t be disappointed if you go for one dish or five, just very full.
Best Bristol bar:
I’m not a big drinker but when I get together with the girls, we love to go down to the bar at Za Za Bazaar for drinks and chat and may end up upstairs for some food. It’s comfortable and casual so we can just be ourselves.
Go-to shop in Bristol:
Zara hands down, who doesn’t love Zara and Homesense? I have a thing for home furniture and notebooks, what can I say?
Check the exterior of the property
Make sure the outside of the property is in good condition. Look for loose roof tiles, leaking pipes and gutters, crumbling or cracked brickwork, gaps around windows, and so on – if there are any issues, check with our Bristol Property Experts that they will be repaired before anybody moves in.
Inspect the inside
This feels obvious – of course you’ll be paying attention to the inside…right?
It’s not quite as simple as just having a look around. See if there are any signs of dampness or condensation issues, such as mould or watermarks on the walls. Remember to check the corners of the rooms – high and low!
Parking and Traffic
Always ask what the parking arrangements are with the property and if it’s on-road parking, think about taking a drive around the area at the times you are likely to need to park.
One of our biggest top tips is to give yourself some time around the viewing to take a walk or drive around the local area. Check the coffee shops, the restaurants, where you’ll be grabbing the essentials at the end of the day. It can have a huge impact on where you end up!
Check if there are any communal areas such as a garden, entrance hall or stairwell.
Ask our Bristol Property Experts who is responsible and if there are any maintenance costs. Some properties have a service charge for the upkeep of
We hope you find just what you are looking for and if you’re searching for a property to rent in Bristol, you may be interested in some of our properties at The Letting Game.
Harbourfest – 14th July
This annual event is nothing short of spectacular. With rides, live music, food stalls and culture around every corner, this simply has to be marked in your calendar as a must-attend!
Grease Summer screenings – The Mall Gardens Clifton 18th July
A beautiful setting to watch a proper cult classic under the stars. Grab yourself a drink before getting comfortable for the screening, not a bad way to spend summer in Bristol!
Tom Zanetti – Motion 22nd July
Hosted in the Container Yard at Motion, Leeds DJ, Tom Zanetti is scheduled to grace the stage along with some very special guests. Think Ibiza, in Bristol.
Bristol Balloon Fiesta – 10th – 13th of August
A globally famous event, the Balloon Fiesta sees visitors from across the globe make their way to our city to see the incredible spectacle. The morning ascent and nightglow can not be missed.
Sunset Party at Clifton Observatory 11th August
Not able to make it to the Balloon Fiesta? Not a problem, get yourself a perch at one of the most iconic spots in Bristol to watch the balloons float by with a drink in hand and a live DJ to follow.
Glasshouse summer day party – The Full Moon 19th August
With five DJs lined up, the Glasshouse crew are coming back strong following a successful set last year. Dancing the night away in an outdoor bar? There are worse ways to spend summer in Bristol!
Millie’s top pick:
I’m interior design and houseplant obsessed! If ever I’m lost and people need to find me, I will either be in Fancy Plants at the top of Gloucester Road, or Mon Pote on North Street, in BS3. My home is filled to the brim with houseplants (you can never have enough), so both of these fantastic Bristol independent businesses provide everything I will ever need!
Kieran’s top pick:
I love a good pub garden, and now is as good a time as any to get out and enjoy the sunshine! The Ostrich down at the harbourside, has plenty of outdoor seating, and over the summer, the food hut outside serves delicious snacks and burgers to enjoy with an ice-cold pint. A pub on the waterfront, you can’t go wrong!
Tobi’s top pick:
For me, it’s’ a complete toss-up between two of my favourite restaurants, I just can’t decide! Bosco on Whiteladies Road is a go-to for me if we fancy the best Italian in town, there I said it! I also love Bravas on Cotham Hill, the food and atmosphere are unlike anything else in the city. Both places are super relaxed and the staff go above and beyond, a true representation of a Bristol independent business.
Paul’s top pick:
As a music lover, I love nothing more than perusing around a record shop, and seeing what hidden treasures I can find. Friendly Records on North Street, Bedminster is a brilliant Bristol Independent business that specialises in new and used records, they stock all genres, so you’re sure to find some proper gems in there.
Serving the most decadent of chocolate treats, this family-run establishment on Park Street is a must for the chocolate addicts among us. We highly recommend their famous hot chocolate with a double chocolate chip cookie sandwich chaser!
Arnos Vale Cemetery
Walk off the choc this Easter in Bristol! Set over 45 acres and full of amazing nature trails, we think, as do many others, that this Victorian garden cemetery is one of Bristol’s best-kept secrets. Grab yourself a coffee to warm the cockles as you roam around this fascinating, alternative walking route.
Brunel’s SS Great Britain
Fancy some seriously retro dining? Inspired by the menu during SS Great Britain’s voyage to Australia in 1861, step onboard this Bristol landmark to enjoy some traditional Victorian puddings in the First Class Dining Saloon.
Tobacco Factory Sunday Market
This community market takes place beside the Tobacco Factory every Sunday, and with amazing food, craft and local produce stalls, there really is something for everyone. Plus, you’re still walking around and working off the chocolate… https://tobaccofactory.com/whats-on/sunday-market/
Pre-tenancy considerations: Furnished or Unfurnished?
It often feels tempting to go for a furnished option, you don’t have to fork out for a bed, sofas, dining tables…the list goes on. However, furnishing a home is much more cost-effective than it used to be. If you’re low on budget but would prefer to start your own furniture collection, you can look at local buy-and-sell sites like Gumtree to find some bargains. And, as always, you can find most staple pieces at a fairly affordable price in Ikea.
Unfurnished properties tend to be decorated in a more neutral way, so you have more scope to make it your own with decorative pieces and furniture choices. But, if you’re going for a furnished option whether due to needing a shorter tenancy or it being a student let, fear not. Keep reading for ideas on how to inject some personality without a lick of paint.
Firstly: Communicate with your landlord or lettings agency
Most rental agreements have rules in place and you should not carry out alterations to the property without your landlord’s permission. However, many landlords are quite happy for long-term tenants to replace things like curtains and light fittings providing they are replaced with the original fittings when you move out.
Some landlords are happy for you to paint rooms a different colour, especially if it improves the overall look of the property or the colour you use remains neutral for future tenants – but always get permission before cracking open the tins and brushes!
If you need extra storage but your landlord doesn’t want you to drill into the walls, you can work around it.
There are plenty of freestanding storage units like bookshelves, TV units and even coffee tables with drawers for the living area. For your bedroom, you could add a blanket box or trunk. Any local or national DIY/homewares store will have a multitude of storage solutions, so if you’re a keen shopper, take a day out to explore and find your best option.
Artwork, Wall Hangings, Mirrors, and Stickers
If the property has existing picture hooks, get some artwork or wall hangings to personalise the space – just be wary of heavy items! This can be a great opportunity to visit markets and different areas of Bristol – finding cool pieces that local artists have created can also help you feel more like you belong in your new area, and supports the local community.
A great way to liven up plain walls is to apply removable wall stickers which can be easily removed at the end of your tenancy without leaving a mark on the walls.
Bank – Totterdown
A firm favourite amongst our team, Bank’s delicious small plates and tasty tipples are perfect for an evening with the other half, swooning over a four-course meal and paired wine flight, or on your own!
Trylla – Bedminster
Fancy a private pottery wheel class for one, or two? Perfectly placed to enjoy the fruits of North Street after, depending on how bad your pot is, Bedminster’s Trylla is a must for a fun, yet romantic evening. Think ‘Ghost’, but in Bristol, definitely one of Bristol’s best Valentine’s Day activities!
Clifton Observatory – Clifton
Cocktails, live music and dinner at one of the most romantic spots in Bristol? With views across the Avon Gorge and the iconic bridge, £50 per person will get you a delicious three-course meal as well as a glass of prosecco on arrival whilst a live band serenade you, you can’t go wrong!
Bristol Light Festival – City Centre
Running for ten days from the 3rd of February, this famous festival brings colour, light, and play to iconic city centre spaces with commissions for both international, and local artists. Cultured romance for free, you’re welcome!
Her Majesty’s – Whiteladies Road
Tucked away near the train station, HM’s is home to creative cocktails with a vintage vibe. Walk-ins are always welcome, but we recommend booking to bag yourself a spot for the evening. Our favourite? The ‘Twister’. Why? You get a free ice lolly in your drink!
Where to start?
The best piece of advice we can give is to get yourself prepared. There are a few pieces of information a letting agent, or landlord will need to proceed with your tenancy, including documents that confirm your identity, immigration status (if you’re a non-UK-Citizen you’ll require a right to rent code), credit history and possibly employment status. The sooner you have these documents sorted, the easier the application should be for you when you find your Bristol rental property.
£££ Budget and deposits
When you’re looking at your affordability, it can be tricky to work out your monthly budget, especially when you consider bills etc. Industry standards require you to earn 2.5 x the monthly rent to be able to secure your chosen property. Depending on the deficit of your earnings, the managing agent of the landlord may ask for a Guarantor to be put in place. This person will earn the required amount and will be responsible for paying the rent if you are unable to.
You will be required to pay 1 week’s rent in advance to secure your property. Since the tenancy fee ban came into effect in June 2019, there is a cap on the deposit that tenants are required to pay at the start of the tenancy. If the total annual rent is less than £50,000, the maximum deposit is 5 weeks’ rent. If the annual rent is £50,000 or above, the maximum deposit is 6 weeks’ rent.
Finding your home
Once you’ve worked out your budget, with so many options available across our city with regards to property types and locations, the best thing to do is think about what sort of property best suits your needs and lifestyle. For example:
- Do you have a lot of furniture? If so, unfurnished is for you!
- Do you have a car and need parking?
- Is a garden a must?
- Would you prefer city living or country life?
These, along with your budget and ideal location should help you whittle down your search criteria!
When you find ‘the one’
You’ve found it, your temporary dream pad. So what’s next? This is where that preparation comes in useful, the Bristol rental market can be fast-paced, so once you’ve found your home be prepared to make an offer quickly. We have a handy application form on our website, so once you’ve viewed it and decided to make an offer, it couldn’t be easier. Once your offer is accepted, you, along with any other tenants and guarantors will need to go through referencing, as well as provide ID documents. This can take up to two weeks.
Once you pass referencing, the countdown is on! If you’re renting a Letting Game property, you’ll be invited to our office to collect your keys before heading to your new home to get settled!
Our top tips
- Ask questions if the information isn’t clear.
- Get your documents and information prepared before you start viewing.
- Follow us on Instagram and set alerts for a first look at all of our properties before they go to market!
Fancy a film?
Bristol Film Festival is back, screening timeless films in some of the city’s most iconic locations. Bristol Museum is showing loads of best-loved festive classics this December, but for us, we will be heading to their showing of Home Alone on the 19th!
For an extra special experience, a vintage screening of It’s a Wonderful Life is also being shown at Averys historic wine cellars on December 20th. This unique experience pairs a Christmas classic with a tasting of specially selected wines, as well as a deli box from Two Belly!
Bristol Christmas Markets
Located within the heart of the city centre, Bristol Christmas Market has over 50 Christmas chalets housing traders offering unique gifts and tempting treats, as well as mouth-watering food stalls including traditional German bratwursts and festive vegan wraps. The Jager Barn Bar offers festive classics from Baileys hot chocolates to mulled wines and cider. The bar is surrounded by private igloos providing the ultimate winter wonderland experience and seating up to 8 people; these magical domes can only be booked in advance online. https://bristolchristmasmarket.com/igloo/
Sail with Santa
Join Bristol Ferry Boats for some festive family fun this December. The onboard elves create a unique experience for kids to go on the hunt for Santa on a 45-minute boat trip around Bristol Harbour. This special voyage is topped off with sherry, seasonal snacks for the adults, and personalised gifts for the children from Santa Claus. https://www.bristolferry.com/public-trips-and-tours/santa/
Cinderella at Bristol Hippodrome
What would Christmas be without a Panto? Starring Craig Revel Horwood, Cinderella has it all, laugh-out-loud comedy, stunning scenery, beautiful costumes and plenty of boos and hisses. Make sure you book in advance as this Bristol festive feature promises to book out fast…oh no it doesn’t…Sorry.
With a few walk routes to choose from, babbling streams and a manor house (now a museum), Blaise Castle Estate is perfect for a brisk stroll, and one of our favourite Bristol Autumnal walks. Be sure to visit the sham castle where there are fabulous views of Avonmouth, the Avon Gorge and South Wales.
Arnos Vale Cemetry
Hear us out on this one! Set over 45 acres and full of amazing nature trails, we think, as do many others, that this Victorian garden cemetery is one of Bristol’s best-kept secrets. Grab yourself a coffee to warm the cockles as you roam around this fascinating, alternative walking route.
Ashton Court Estate
Created by a group of friends with a big idea and a clear vision, Propyard is an event space like no other This place has it all; gorgeous views, various trails, wonderful woodland, and deer! The yellow building of Ashton Court Estate sits in the middle of this beautiful open space, and whilst it might not be for everyone, we’d recommend a sunrise walk to watch the deer roam across the paddocks, especially on a colder, frosty morning. Sure to blow away the cobwebs!
This famous Bristol landmark is one of the city’s most beautiful open spaces. With gorgeous Georgian houses and trees lining the edges, the area can be enjoyed all year round, but the autumnal months really bring it to life. So whether you fancy a brisk stroll or an hours-long yomp, we highly recommend The Downs to get some fresh air in your lungs, as well as feasting your eyes on some of Bristol’s best landscapes.
Stoke Park Estate
The possibilities are endless on this wonderful walk. Head one way for the scenic Snuff Mills route, go further onto Eastville Park, or head to the iconic yellow Dower House for great views across the city and beyond from a slightly different perspective. With the dog-friendly Boston Tea Party just around the corner in Cheswick Village, you can grab a brew with the pooch before heading on your way.
As the oldest park in Bristol, Brandon Hill has great views over the city and Harbourside area, it’s also steeped in history. There are pretty paths, a nature conservation area, and one of the icons of Bristol’s skyline, Cabot Tower. But be warned, with most of the walk uphill, you might not need that extra layer after all!