Being in the market for a new apartment rental can be both a fun and exciting time. It’s easy in all the chaos of the moving process, however, to overlook the fine print that might be included in your lease. Failure to read through and understand thoroughly the terms of your apartment lease could lead to big problems down the road! Avoid any miscommunications with your new landlord by going in to the process of apartment hunting with a good idea of what you should be looking out for!
Lease Term & Termination Date
Perhaps the most important information you will find on your apartment rental lease is the lease term and the termination date. The lease term outlines how long your lease is considered active with your landlord and the termination date lists the official date that your lease is considered over. This portion of your lease agreement will also likely outline the renewal process, as well as whether or not your landlord considers month-to-month options upon termination of your existing lease.
The majority of apartment rental contracts will require a security deposit. This amount is collected to cover the cost of any damages incurred above and beyond “normal wear and tear” on the property. It also helps to ensure that, should you be unable to pay your rent in full at any point during your lease, your landlord won’t suffer. This amount is typically equivalent to a full month’s rent.
Normal Wear & Tear
This section of your apartment rental lease will help to clarify what your landlord considers “normal” wear and tear of the property you are renting. It will also outline the condition they expect to find the apartment in upon completion of the lease term in order for you to get back your security deposit in full.
Another obviously important part of your rental agreement is the rental amount. This section of your lease will tell you how much your monthly rent payment is, the due date that amount is expected, whether or not there is a grace period should you find yourself running behind on a particular month, and/or any potential rent increases that you may see during the length of your lease (this is more common on long-term rentals and/or commercial properties).
The section titled “What’s Included” in your apartment rental lease will outline just that. It will tell you exactly what your monthly rent is paying for. This is where you will find out whether any utilities or other additional services (such as pest control) are being taken care of.
Within your apartment rental lease, you will also want to be on the lookout for any remodeling restrictions put forth by your landlord. This is important information to have before you decide to paint the walls or drill holes to hang up your favorite artwork.
Number of Allowable Occupants
Once you sign the lease on your apartment rental, it doesn’t mean that you have free reign to invite the whole neighborhood to come crash on your couch. It should be clearly outlined in your lease agreement how many people are allowed to occupy the unit and who those people are. It will also outline your landlords’ policy on overnight guests.
HOA Rules & Regulations
If your apartment rental has an HOA or a management company, it likely has its own set of guidelines that it expects tenants to follow. Make sure that you get a chance to thoroughly read through these rules and regulations prior to signing your lease.
Should a pipe burst or your toilet overflow in the middle of the night, the last thing you want to do is have to worry about who to call! Before signing a lease, make sure that your apartment landlord has a clear protocol in place outlining how emergencies should be handled.
If you plan on bringing along Fido to your new apartment rental, you’ll want to know all about your landlords pet policy. This will tell you about any weight restrictions, breed restrictions, as well as how many pets you are allowed to have.
Lastly, don’t forget to ask about parking! Nobody wants to wake up to a ticket or logged complaints from neighbors for parking in the wrong space, so make sure that your lease outlines the proper place to keep your vehicle.
Looking for an Apartment Rental in Hattiesburg or the Surrounding Area?
Now that you know exactly what to look for in your next apartment rental lease, it’s time to find your perfect place! Contact the team at Hattiesburg Apartments to gain access to the best apartment living that the Hattiesburg area has to offer! We can’t wait to help you find your new home!