Top Tips When Looking at Rentals
Updated: Sep 10, 2018
Sunday, August 19, 2018
I have helped clients find rentals of all shapes and sizes - single family homes, condos, townhomes, duplexes, you name it! I am also an experienced renter myself having done so several times before buying my current home. I have learned a lot about what to look for and important questions to ask. Today I'm sharing my top tips with you to help prepare in your rental search!
· Its always a good idea to know and be on top of your credit score. It can affect so much from car financing and yep, you guessed it - being chosen as a tenant. The majority of landlords will run a credit and background check on all applicants. You can expect to pay a fee of about $30-$50 per applicant to have this done (and it is a non-refundable fee). If you have a history of delinquent payments you won't make the top of landlord's list so be sure to keep up with monthly payments and keep your debt in check.
· Maybe you have a lower credit score or no credit - some good reference letters from previous landlords can be invaluable when being considered as a tenant. Even with a good credit score, it is certainly a good idea to provide this reference (and is often asked for anyway). Are you a first time renter with no previous landlord to speak of? Don't worry! Have your boss or supervisor at work write a reference letter outlining your timeliness, reliability and professionalism.
· Know the right questions to ask! There is a lot to cover when renting a property and you have a right to understand all aspects:
o What is the monthly rent and is there an expected increase? If so, what will the increase be and when will it occur?
o What is the due date for rent and is there a grace period (many landlords will offer a short grace period)
o What, if any, utilities are included in the monthly rent?
o What is the security deposit (typically equal to the first month's rent) and will it be refundable? Ask the same for pet deposit if applicable.
o Who is responsible for lawn maintenance?
o What happens if I need to terminate my lease early?
o Am I required to have renter's insurance?
o What is the process if something in the rental needs repair?
o What is the parking situation? Is there a charge for parking?
o What is allowed aesthetically? Ex. Am I allowed to paint? Hang items on the wall? Install a satellite dish on the roof?
· It's important to note a Realtor can help you find a rental property at no cost to you. Message me with questions! I have helped dozens of renters and love it every time! I have an insight of the rental market that allows me to navigate you through the process. We'll successfully find you a rental you'll love!