Questions to Ask Before Renting
Have you finally found the perfect place to rent? When you find a beautiful new home or apartment, it can be easy to get caught up in the excitement of shopping for new furniture and basking in the ambiance of your new place. Before signing that lease, there are a few things you will need to know:
Although the price of rent is probably a major deciding factor in your home search, you will also need to know when the rent is due and how long the grace period may be if you pay late. Can rent increases occur? If you have a short-term lease, the landlord might be able to increase your rent periodically.
How Much To Move In?
Some landlords may have you pay the first month’s rent before move-in, but others might desire the first and last month’s rent along with a security deposit. These costs can add up quickly! Your deposit may be negotiable, so talk with your landlord to see if there is flexibility.
Your landlord will most likely do a credit check and require proof of income. Someone may need to guarantee the loan for you if you do not qualify on your own. If you are unable to pay the bills at any point, the guaranteer will be held responsible.
Are utilities included? If so, which ones? Get informed about the water, sewer, gas, Internet, and cable television. If utilities are not included, ask about how heat is provided. It can be expensive!
Make sure to know your total monthly costs to make sure the place you have found truly fits your budget. Many apartments have fees for parking, pets, and maybe even the amenities. Ask about these fees upfront so you can rule out the apartment if necessary.
Many leases last for 12 months, but don’t automatically assume that this will always be true. You are obligated to pay your rent for the duration of your lease, so you need to know how long you will be paying the expenses.
If something breaks in your rental unit, you will need to know who is responsible for the repair and costs. If the lease does not specify who is responsible, don’t assume the landlord will.
Many leases restrict subleasing, so make sure you understand the limitations. If you are searching for a remote job or plan on moving soon, avoid places that do not allow you to sublease your place.
These tips should help make your home search a much more relaxing time. Ask all the questions you need to be as informed as possible. After all, this will be your new home! Wilson Property Management, Inc. (WPM) is a full-service management company offering both homeowner association and rental management, so contact us today for all your apartment needs!