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Blog > Top 10 Questions You Must Ask Before Renting Your Next Apartment
It's vital to know what questions to ask a landlord when renting an apartment, especially in the early days of an apartment search. The right questions will save you a lot of time and perhaps even a few headaches.
You might visit a beautiful rental property and instantly think it's the home for you, but there are a plethora of questions to ask a landlord before renting an apartment to ensure it checks all your boxes.
Below are 10 questions to ask a landlord before renting an apartment.
The first question you should ask a landlord before renting an apartment is probably the most important. What is the monthly rent?
Sometimes, apartment prices fluctuate daily, so the price you saw last week may not be the same today. Clarify the monthly rent so you can budget appropriately. Outside of rent, the security deposit is another expense you’ll need to arrange for. A typical security deposit is anywhere between one to three months’ rent. First and last month’s rent is also common.
Landlords often include utilities like water and garbage disposal in the rent while the tenant covers gas, electricity, and heating costs. However, this differs between apartment buildings, so it’s important to ask the landlord what utilities you’re responsible for. Then find out what service providers the apartment building uses. To get an estimate of utility costs, ask the landlord what a tenant in a similar unit pays or ask the utility providers if they could give you an estimate.
The parking situation at a new apartment building could be a deal breaker for many people. If you drive and live in a busy neighborhood with other drivers, parking will be a struggle. It could be a major inconvenience if the apartment building you just explored doesn’t have parking. If the apartment building has parking, be sure to ask the landlord if it’s included in the rent or if it comes at an added cost. If there is no parking available, scan the street for parking choices. Street parking is ideal if it's within a few blocks.
Many landlords aren’t keen to let cats or dogs into their buildings, but you never know. Certain breeds and sizes may be allowed. These are important questions to ask a renter, especially if you hope to get a pet in the future. You don’t want to be stuck in an apartment that doesn’t allow animals when you eventually decide you really want one.
Amenities are often one of the best parts of apartment dwelling. When visiting an apartment building, questions to ask the landlord include whether there is a pool or a gym. In a luxury complex, you might expect additional offerings, such as co-working spaces and private dog parks.
Also, be sure to investigate the amenities in your suite. Energy-efficient appliances and in-suite laundry could save you a lot of time and money.
Want to spice up your new walls with your favourite art, or paint them a hue closer to your style? You’re probably dreaming about all the ways you can give the apartment your personal touch, but find out what's allowed before signing the lease.
While this is a big no for a lot of apartment buildings, it may be important to inquire about if you need to move out before the lease is up or travel for an extended period.
You never know when an emergency will pop up. Find out how your landlord handles urgent requests like a broken air conditioner or window leaks. Check to see if maintenance is available around the clock and if not, when.
You’ve found an apartment that has everything you’re looking for. Now it’s time to strike a deal before another renter snatches it up. Questions to ask when viewing an apartment include whether there are any income or credit requirements for tenants. Landlords often prefer applicants with a gross monthly income that’s three times the monthly rent. When applying, you’ll likely also need to provide proof of income.
Your credit score will also play a part in your apartment application. Generally, the minimum credit score a landlord will accept is 650, but this can fluctuate, so be sure to ask questions like this when viewing an apartment for rent.
This is a brilliant question that could tell you several things. Planned construction taking place after you move in could affect noise levels, views, parking and leave you with a headache for months. Not only that, but some apartment building updates could lead to a hike in rental.
Write a list of all the important questions you have to ask so you don’t forget when you go out to meet prospective landlords. Finding an apartment that you can call home doesn’t have to be difficult, but finding a home that you love and that meets all your expectations is another story.
These are just a few questions you can ask, as a renter, to ensure you cover all bases before moving in. If you’re still searching for your next apartment, Jolan Properties can help you find a place to call home today.
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