List room for free

 02
Jan

Beginner’s Guide to TheRoomLink

Liezl Hesketh in Why TheRoomLink 

Beginners-step-by-step-guide-to-TheRoomLink

TheRoomLink is South Africa’s first online property matching website – connecting renters and rooms. The user-base consists of people providing and those looking for accommodation. Therefore if you’re a renter, student, professional, landlord, developer, fellow roommate, student accommodation provider, agent or just want to rent out a room to make a bit of pocket money, this is the site for you.

SEE ALSO: How TheRoomLink works

The user community is growing daily with thousands of people finding their renter or property matches for accommodation such as student accommodation, bachelor flat/studios, communes, flats, houses, converted outbuildings, B&Bs, guest houses, cottages, granny flats and more.

Setting up

Joining TheRoomLink gives you unlimited access to their database of users for free. So whether you’re looking for somewhere to live, or whether you have something to rent out, TheRoomLink is for you. You can start by registering an account with your email address, or connect to TheRoomLink using your Twitter or Facebook accounts. The two later options are the quickest registration methods.

Each user needs to complete a profile – this is the information made available to the other party when a match is made.

  • Renters: You need to complete a Renter’s Profile. This includes all your needs and requirements as well as basic personal information about yourself which you can tailor and personalise. This Renter’s Profile is what those with rooms and flats will see, to decide whether they believe you are a good match and want to contact you.
  • Flats & Rooms: Landlords, developers and agents need a Room Listing to list your property. This becomes the equivalent of your property advertisement. You need to provide detailed information about your property to entice renters to contact you.

If you have any problems while setting up your profile, you can check under the Help section if you can find an answer to your problem. However, if you cannot find an answer, please contact Lisa@TheRoomLink.com who will be happy to help you.

Importance of photos on profiles

Renters-profile-and-room-profile-on-TheRoomLinkAlthough photos are not compulsory on the site, listings with photos get 20x the number of enquiries than those without. TheRoomLink therefore encourages all users to upload photos. Step-by-Step help is available if you’re new to uploading photos online

Matching renters to rooms

Renters and rooms are automatically matched up through TheRoomLink’s advanced matching engine. Each user will receive daily or weekly emails providing them with their own personal matches.

  • Renters. You will be sent a list of properties which correspond to your search area and budget; and
  • Flats, Houses & Rooms. You will be sent a list of renters who are looking for a place like yours.

How to rent

You need to complete a Renter’s Profile. From the menu at the top of the page, click on:

  • My Account
  • Your Renter’s Profile

Complete all the questions, and be sure to Publish your Renter’s Profile at the last step.

  • Searching for properties. There are 2 ways to search for properties
    • On the homepage, enter the town/city/suburb you’re searching in, and click on ‘Find a Room’
    • Wait for matching emails to be sent to your email inbox
  • Making contact. If you’ve found somewhere you’d be interested to rent, you can contact the advertising party (landlord, owner, developer, agent etc).

If you find any property listings that are not representative of the real property, scammers or inappropriate material, it is possible to report unacceptable listings for TheRoomLink team to investigate.

How to list a property

Once you have registered and verified your email address, you can go to TheRoomLink’s homepage and at the top click on “ADD A LISTING”.

Now provide all the details of your property step-by-step and add photos. Although it might seem like you need to provide a lot of information, not all information is compulsory. Rule of thumb: only step 1 and 2 is compulsory. But, the more information you are able to provide, the better the quality of enquiries you get.

If you’re not a natural photographer, we have put together a few tips to help you take good photos of your property. Again, the better your photos, the more likely you are to get enquiries for your property.

SEE ALSO: How to take good property photos

Payments and expected fees

TheRoomLink is not an agent and no commission charges are payable to us. Room and property pricing is determined by the person renting out the space. We don’t become involved in the transactions between renters and landlords, but merely put you in touch with each other.

Extra costs that may be payable

  • Agents’ costs. Property agents often charge administrative charges. Please be sure to ask about these.
  • Bills and expenses. In some cases all costs are included, but in other situations water, electricity, parking, security, amenities, etc might incur extra charges. Do ask about exactly what is included before you sign any contracts.

Legal and safety concerns

Lease agreements are not yet compulsory in South Africa, although there is legislation currently being reviewed which may change this soon. However, it is good practice to sign an agreement to protect both parties. You can download lease agreements from our partners.

TheRoomLink recognises that safety concerns are real in South Africa. We have put together some safety and security tips, which should help to keep yourself safe. But be vigilant. There are scammers and unscrupulous people out there – keep yourself safe.

Other legal considerations

  • Insurance. Check with your insurer to see if it may impact your policy
  • Mortgage Bonds. Some mortgage bond providers need to be informed if any part of your property is rented out.
  • Lease agreement. If you rent your property and you’re planning to sub-let, please check with your landlord first.

Membership Explained.

TheRoomLink website is now completely free meaning all members can contact each other without any restrictions

  • Members have access to the entire database of renters or listings
  • Members can contact other members
  • Members can view any published profile at any time

Other help and tips

There is help available, which can be accessed directly from the menu bar. Here are the most frequently asked questions:
Help using TheRoomLink website
Help with uploading photos to TheRoomLink
What to do once you’ve rented out your room
What to do once you’ve found a place to live
Where to Unsubscribe / Manage your emails

If you have any other questions that weren’t answered above, do ask them in the comments below