Whether you are a first-time renter or a seasoned pro, it can be difficult to remember all of the questions you want to have answered when you are on an apartment rental tour. That being said, failure to dig a little deeper and ask the important ones can lead to renters regret later down the line. Consider getting together a checklist to take with you as you tour potential rental properties. To get you started, here are some commonly forgotten queries that shouldn’t be left out.
1. How do you pay your rent?
This might seem like an obvious one, but knowing the details of your apartment rental payment policy is imperative to successful renting. It’s not just about how much rent is or when it is due, but also where it gets paid, which forms of payment are accepted and whether or not there is a grace period in case of a late payment.
2. What is included in the cost of your rent?
Finding the perfect apartment rental can feel like a sigh of relief unless you enter into an agreement without a full understanding of what your rent covers. Ask if your electric, cable, internet, and other utilities are included in your rental fee, or if these will be additional out of pocket expenses.
3. What does your security deposit cover?
There’s nothing quite as bad as getting hit with an unexpected expense, particularly at the end of your apartment rental lease when you are hoping to receive money back from your deposit. Getting clear on your responsibilities as a renter will help to ensure that you do, indeed, get your deposit back in full.
4. How safe is the property?
Not all apartment rental properties are created equal when it comes to safety. Beyond the location of the property, you should also ask about maintenance of fire alarms and proximity to local law enforcement. Safety within your apartment rental is even more important. Be sure to inquire under what circumstances apartment complex employees are allowed to enter your space without notice.
5. Should you get renters insurance?
Although the majority of apartment rental complexes won’t require this, some may and others yet may recommend it for your own benefit.
6. What are you allowed to do within the apartment space?
Imagine that you finally sign the lease for your new apartment rental, only to find out that you are stuck with the drab, white, unadorned walls. Knowing what’s acceptable when it comes to decorating your new space can have a big effect on whether or not you will be happy there for the length of your lease. Painting and hanging pictures are small acts that make a big difference.
7. Does the apartment complex have plans to renovate in the near future?
The potential renovation of your apartment rental complex is important for a couple of reasons. For one thing, there will be the potential for increased noise and construction debris. On the flip side, it could mean better amenities down the line and become further incentive to rent.
8. What is the policy on overnight guests?
This will vary from one apartment rental to another and should be clearly outlined in your lease. Many complexes have a two-week cap on overnight guests or require long-term guests to be registered with the office. There might also be limits on where they can park. Getting clear on this will help to keep you from accidentally breaking the terms of your lease.
9. How are necessary repairs handled?
Things break…sometimes at the least convenient moments. Knowing the process of reporting needed repairs to your apartment rental landlord is extremely important. Ask about what the leasing office hours are and who you would go to in the case of something breaking. Be sure to clarify how the process will be different if there is an emergency repair needed, perhaps in the middle of the night or the weekend.
10. What happens when you are ready to terminate the lease?
Whether the lease has come to an end and you’ve decided not to renew, or something has happened to cause you to break the lease early, this is a critical point to get clear on. Does the complex require a notice of non-renewal and if so, how far in advance? What is the penalty for breaking your lease? Do you have the ability to sublet the apartment in case things change?
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With SVN | Southgate Realty by your side, finding an apartment rental that checks all the boxes is super-easy. We have 17 amazing communities to show you, each featuring spacious floor plans, upgraded finishes, great location and unmatched amenities. Contact us today to get your search started and check out all of our beautiful properties!