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A young lady holding a set of house keys

The excitement of moving into new ‘digs’ may be short-lived when there are the costs to consider.




Upfront costs of renting


Rental bond

When you agree to rent a property, the landlord or real estate agent will request a rental bond. This amount is usually equal to one month’s rent although it varies from state to state. This money needs to be available when the lease is signed.

Pet bond 

This payment covers any costs incurred as a result of damage from your pet during your tenancy eg. chewed or scratched woodwork or torn screen doors.

Rent in Advance

In most cases, two weeks rent in advance will need to be paid as part of the security deposit.

Moving costs

Depending upon the situation a truck, ute or trailer may need to be hired to shift furniture.

Property basics

For a first time move, there will be basic furniture such as beds and a table and chairs to acquire. In addition, there will be white goods like a fridge, washing machine and microwave. The first shop for household needs such as food, cooking equipment (crockery and cutlery), cleaning equipment and bedding will be required.

Recurring costs



This refers to things like electricity, gas, water, and internet. Depending on the lease all or none of these utilities may be included in the rent. A good plan is to set aside a few dollars each week for these types of bills to avoid having large payments at the end of the month or quarter. Check after a couple of bill cycles to work out an average amount. Extremes in temperatures may add to the costs when heating and cooling appliances are being used.

Renters’ contents insurance

Contents insurance is highly recommended as it can insure possessions and give peace of mind in the event of a fire or break-in.


Fresh food plus the replacement of pantry staple is an ongoing cost. Special diet or health requirements may increase this amount spent.


If a pet is allowed then food, grooming and vet bills need to be considered.


Depending on the location, renting with a car can pose problems. In urban areas parking may be limited or offsite parking may need to be paid.


This will require the purchase of a washing machine (one large outlay of money) or the use of the machines at a laundromat (smaller more regular spends).


Renters without cars will need to budget for public transport or taxi fares. Those with a vehicle will have to factor in maintenance, insurance, registration and running costs.

Additional costs

Entertainment, clothing, phone costs and gifts will are additional costs that will need to be considered.

Information on Rental Assistance is available at: Services Australia 

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