Whether you’re a first-time or seasoned renter, there’s a lot to consider and take in. Although you might have a checklist of the things you expect out of a property, for instance, room sizes and amenities, it’s possible to forget a few significant things.
Therefore, it’s important to obtain responses to important questions that revolve around apartment living. Fortunately, this guide will shed light on what to ask besides helping you make an informed decision.
1. What is the Cost of Deposits, Rent, and Utilities? Can I Get a Breakdown?
As a renter, you should establish the amount you’ll pay upfront with deposits, rent, and any other charges. Beware that the cost of utilities is frequently a break or make factor for most apartment renters.
You should also note that utilities can increase monthly costs considerably, so you’ll want to find out what is and isn’t included early.
2. What is the Policy on Including Pets or People to the Lease?
A number of tenancy agreements expect each person over a specified age to sign the lease, while others simply require one tenant. Bear in mind that some properties don’t permit pets while others are okay with it.
Be upfront with the property manager or landlord. This way, you won’t be in a tight corner once you’ve signed the agreement.
3. Do I Have the Freedom to Decorate the Apartment?
Most leases stipulate that the renter should restore the unit in the same condition in which he or she found it.
In other areas, decorating isn’t allowed while others have specific clauses that need written consent before using wallpaper, painting, etc. It’s important you inquire about the specific rules to avoid losing your security deposit.
4. If My Roommate Can’t Fulfill the Rental Payment, will the Property Hold Me Accountable?
It’s imperative you understand lease penalties and agreements, particularly when roommates are concerned. It’s also important to understand the differences between occupants and tenants. If you sign the agreement, you’re a tenant and will be responsible for the stipulated agreements in your lease.
If the people living in your apartment didn’t sign any agreement, they aren’t contractually bound and can’t be held responsible in the event that they can’t pay their rent portion or in case other issues arise.
5. What is the Policy on Lease Termination?
When most renters sign a lease, they do so with the intention of staying the full term. Unfortunately, life changes frequently get in the way of these intentions. For instance, a renter may need to move because of a new job or growing family.
You should establish what would occur in the event that you have to break the lease. This way, you’ll be prepared if you need to vacate the unit before the lease is up.
6. What Does it Take to Get My Security Deposit Back?
A number of property owners find whatever reason possible not to return security deposits and most renters presume they won’t obtain their security back regardless of the condition in which they leave the unit. Check with friends or former renters to see whether your landlord has a tendency of being dishonest with the deposit.
As a first time renter, it’s important to know what to expect when it comes to apartment living. This way, you won’t encounter surprises in the future, especially when it comes to the expenses you’re expected to cover. Fortunately, this list of questions will guide you on what to expect.
For more information on the questions to ask as a renter, contact us at Apartment Agents or leave a comment.