Finding the right home rental can be a daunting task. You want to make sure you are getting the best deal possible and that you are renting from a reputable landlord or rental property management company. Here are 25 tips to help you find the perfect place and make sure your tenancy goes smoothly.
1. Start your search early.
The best places always go first, so if you have a specific area or time frame in mind, start your search as soon as possible.
2. Do your research.
Read online reviews and check out websites on home rentals to learn about different neighborhoods and what to expect from different landlords.
3. Narrow your search down to a few areas that fit your needs.
Don’t just focus on the city center — there are great neighborhoods all over the city.
4. Make a list of what’s important to you in a home rental.
Maybe you need parking, or maybe you need a washer and dryer in the unit. Write down everything that’s important to you so you can keep it in mind when you’re looking at places.
5. Set a budget.
Be realistic about what you can afford and don’t forget to factor in things like utilities and transportation costs.
6. Once you’ve found a few potential places, schedule visits.
Make sure you see the place in person before you commit to anything.
7. Ask the landlord questions.
Find out everything you can about the rental agreement, the building, and the neighborhood before signing anything.
8. Pay attention to your gut feeling.
If something feels off about a place, move on — there are plenty of other great rentals out there.
9. Once you’ve decided on a place, fill out the application quickly.
Most landlords will move on to the next applicant if you take too long to decide.
10. Get your paperwork in order.
Make sure you have a copy of your ID, your credit score, and any other relevant documents ready to go when you apply for a home rental.
11. Be prepared for a credit check.
Landlords will often do a credit check before renting to you, so make sure you’re aware of what that means for your credit score.
12. Don’t forget about renter’s insurance.
Even if the landlord has insurance, it’s a good idea to get renter’s insurance in case of an emergency.
13. Be prepared to pay a security deposit.
Most landlords require a security deposit before you move in. Be sure to have that money ready to go.
14. Get familiar with your rights as a tenant.
Landlords can’t just show up at your place whenever they want, and they can’t evict you without a reason. Make sure you know your rights so you can protect yourself if needed.
15. Sign a lease agreement.
Lease agreements are legally binding, so make sure you read through them carefully and understand everything that’s included.
16. Follow the rules of the lease agreement.
If you don’t follow the rules of your lease agreement, you could end up getting evicted — and that’s not a situation you want to be in.
17. Pay your rent on time.
This one should be obvious, but make sure you always pay your rent on time to avoid any problems.
18. Keep the place clean.
Nobody wants to live in a mess, so make sure you keep the place clean and tidy during your tenancy.
19. Cooperate with repairs and maintenance requests.
If something breaks or needs repairing, let the landlord know right away, so they can fix it as soon as possible.
20. Be respectful of your neighbors.
Remember that you’re not the only person living in the building — be considerate of your neighbors and keep noise levels down at night.
21. Report any problems you have to the landlord.
If there’s a problem with the rental unit, let the landlord know, so they can fix it.
22. Don’t make any changes to the rental unit without permission.
Don’t paint the walls or put up new shelves without getting permission from the landlord first — you could end up losing your security deposit if you do.
23. Give notice before you move out.
Most lease agreements require you to give notice before you move out, so be sure to do that in order to avoid any penalties.
24. Leave the place in good condition when you move out.
Do your best to leave the rental unit in the same condition as when you moved in, or you could end up losing your security deposit.
25. Thank your landlord.
If your landlord has been a huge help, make sure you thank them for their time and effort. Remember that when you are looking for another place to rent, your new prospective landlord will probably contact your previous landlord for references.
In conclusion, renting a home can be a great experience. You must, however, be aware of what to expect and follow the rules. By following these tips, you’ll be on your way to finding the perfect rental for you.