What I Rent: Claudia and Steve, £1,260 a month for a flat in Walton-on-Thames

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

£1,260 per month. Bills are around £250 a month.

And what do you get for that money?

Two bedrooms, an open plan kitchen/diner/living space and a garden.

Do you think that you have a good deal?

Yes, we do. Considering that we get a house, garden and garage for our money, absolutely. We both are fully aware that the same money would not stretch this far in London itself and that many pay more for a flat. Our rent is average for the area we are living in.

What do you like about living in Walton-on-Thames?

We both like the countryside, rivers, open spaces, etc.

We also like to possibility to be in central London in less than 40min, which is perfect for work, events or outings with friends. However, the Surrey Hills, Guilford, Woking, etc are also just 30min away, so we have the best of both worlds.

Steve and I are not the biggest fans of crowds and busy surroundings, so a small town like Walton was the perfect decision for us.

Do you feel like you have enough space?

No, but that’s entirely down to us. We love to collect things, plus, Steve is continuously creating new pieces.

We are slowly running out of space and always say that we don’t buy any more things. Unfortunately this is one of the resolutions we somehow never manage to keep.

As long as we are still able to move around, it’s okay with us.

How did you find this place?

Online via a property renting/ letting site. We viewed a few places on the day but as soon as we stepped in to this house, we knew that this is the right one for us.

What’s it’s like living together?

We love it. We both enjoy talking, laughing, crafting together, we truly enjoy each others company.

We share all the duties in the house (cleaning, etc) and have found the perfect balance between doing things together and giving each other space and the freedom to enjoy hobbies, meeting friends or simply reading a book.

How have you made the place feel like home?

Well, as you can see on the photos, we love to collect things… a lot of things. Steve is also adding to our collection by building more models.

Our style is a mix of gothic, alternative, pagan, sci-fi, Hot Rod/retro items, it’s a pretty unique mix and we admit this.

We recently upcycled our furniture to match our style, giving our house a look that’s even more us.

We are aware that this style is not everybody’s cup of tea but we love it and, until now, everybody felt at home, comfortable and welcome in our place, which is exactly the vibe we wanted to give our little sanctuary.

Are there any issues with the house you have to put up with?

The house is in a good condition, we do not have any issues at all. We are lucky to have a great landlord, who will sort things out as soon as we report them, which is amazing.

Do you have any plans to move again?

We will move again in the near future, not just because we need more space, we are also planing ahead. Steve would like to have a workshop and I would live to have a conservatory, plus, we both would like to have pets, which we are currently not allowed to have.

My husband is self-employed and a workshop would be great for his job, a garage without power simply doesn’t work for him.

Luckily for us, the neighbour’s cat has sort of adopted us and sees this as his second home. He does visit us daily and plays the temporary cat. Our landlord knows about him and doesn’t mind at all.

Have you considered buying a place?

Yes, we have, but, we are currently not willing to risk this step, especially in this economical climate.

We are also not sure if we want to commit to a mortgage at this stage in our lives, especially as it is not impossible that we make the decision to move to a complete different area, maybe even a different country (especially considering Steve’s work).

You never know what’s around the corner and where your journey takes you.

True. Shall we have a look around?

What I Rent is a weekly series that’s out every Tuesday at 10am. Check back next week to have a nose around another rented property in London.

How to get involved in What I Rent

What I Rent is Metro.co.uk’s weekly series that takes you inside the places in London 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 have pictures taken of your kitchen, living room, bathroom, and bedroom, plus a few photos of you in your room. Make sure you get permission for your housemates!

You’ll also need to be okay with sharing how much you’re paying for rent, as that’s pretty important.

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