Are you on the market for a place to rent? Moving out and on your own is as exciting as it is scary, especially if you are a first-time renter. Renting is a great experience since it offers you the flexibility to move should you want to. If you are new to the renting scene, this new experience will throw a lot of questions your way about how the rent process works. You will also find yourself with questions about how to determine what a great apartment is and what is not. Most first-time renters are not really sure what to expect when looking at apartments for rent. So, to help you protect yourself and make a solid financial decision, here are a few tips that will make renting your first apartment a positive experience.
1. Work Out A Budget And A List Of All Amenities.
The first and one of the most important things for you to do is work out a budget and make a list of what you are looking for in an apartment. You will carry this list with you when you go apartment hunting. The budget that you make should be one that you will be comfortable paying each month. The list should have all the important features and range of amenities that you want your building to have, because the features of every apartment that you visit will vary greatly. Therefore, it is necessary for you to specify the amenities that are important to you, so you can separate your wants from your needs. This list will also help you to eliminate all properties that do not meet your needs.
2. Are Pets Welcome?
When checking out the apartments, if you have a pet, or you are planning on getting one after you move in, you should find out what the rules are regarding pets. While some apartments are pet friendly, some apartments do not allow pets in the building. Then there are the apartments that require a hefty deposit for you to keep an animal in the building as well as those that will limit the number of pets you can have. So if you love pets, it is in your best interest to find this out before you make a commitment.
3. What Is The Parking Like?
Whether you have a car or not, you should ensure that you get a parking spot. Many apartment buildings do not assign specific spots for everyone, so if you want one for yourself, you should make sure you get one. This way, you will ensure that your friends have a space to park when they visit even if you don’t have a car.
4. Read The Lease.
The most important thing for you to do when renting an apartment is read the lease. Seriously, read the lease, and when you are through read it again. The lease is a legally binding contract between you and the landlord. It will specify what is expected of you and what you should expect from your landlord. The lease will also determine how long the contract is for, when you can move in or move out, whether you can sublet, as well as if or how you can break the lease.
5. What About Renter’s Insurance?
Another important thing for you to consider in your apartment hunt, is whether or not you will have renter’s insurance. Your landlord will more than likely have insurance for the building itself, but you need to find out if it covers your possessions, or if it covers damages to the apartment caused by you like if you should accidentally break a window or door. If you are not covered, renter’s insurance is really quite affordable, and it is good to have, especially when you live with that many people nearby, accidents can happen.
6. Talk To The Neighbors.
Before deciding on an apartment, you should find the time to talk to a few of the neighbors. Taking the time to talk to the neighbors before signing the lease or moving in will help you to determine whether or not that particular apartment is right for you. It will also give you the chance to find out how the landlord is, as well as let you know if the place is friendly enough to call home.