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A Guide to Renting Your First Apartment

Finding your first home is an exciting time in a person’s life. You will have a space all your own to do whatever you need – whether it’s enjoying peace and quiet to hosting dinner parties. This can be a long, stressful process but this guide might be able to shed some light on your search.

  1. Set up a budget. The last thing you want to do is live in a home where you struggle financially every month to make the payment. Don’t even look at homes that are more than your budget will allow, you will only tempt yourself. A dependable guide to follow is to not pay more than 30 percent of your take home salary on rent, including utilities, internet and cable.  If this guide shows you that you can’t afford to handle all the expenses on your own then you might think about a roommate.
  2. Figure out which neighborhoods work best for you. You have the right to feel safe in your neighborhood. Consider what you require (for instance, supermarket, exercise center, open transportation) and how far you’re willing to go for it. In case you’re not working close-by, you’ll likewise need to consider your drive to and from the workplace.
  3. List your must-have amenities. Before you begin your search, figure out which amenities are absolutely necessary and which you ones you can live without. Remember that you may need to make a few adjustments to remain inside your financial budget. Some basic must-haves can be a washer and dryer hook up, dishwasher, a large front porch, central heating and air, or a community pool.
  4. Time to start looking. When you realize what you’re searching for and the amount you can manage each month, begin looking for your home. Contact the owners or managers of the property to set up an appointment to see the homes.
  5. The tour of the home. This could be your potential home, so treat your first visit like an investigation. Turn on every one of the fixtures to ensure they are working and the pressure is good. Check the locks on the entryways and windows of the home to guarantee they work appropriately. Bring along a phone charger this way you can check every outlets to ensure they are all working.

Remember, you only have one chance to make a first impression on a potential landlord, so be sure you look presentable and show up on time.

  1. Be prepared to complete a rental application and pay the fee. When you go to view homes, you should be prepared to bring your checkbook for the application charge, a check stub to show proof of your salary and a picture ID.
  1. Read the lease before you sign it. When you find an awesome home, don’t just sign the lease,make sure you understand it completely to avoid issues down the road.

As you read through your apartment lease, make sure it answers the following questions:

  • Are pets allowed, and if so, is there a pet deposit required?
  • Are there restrictions on the number of people that can be on the lease?
  • What is the maintenance process?
  • Are you allowed to hang shelves or paint walls?
  • What are the consequences for breaking your lease?

Ask your new landlord to put the answers to these questions in writing prior to you signing anything.   Make sure there is a move in inspection and that everything is documented so that when you move out you won’t be charged for the damage prior to you moving in. Take pictures of any and all damage prior to moving in. Take the extra step and check to see if you’re able to have the pictures date stamped.  Good luck on your hunt for your perfect home.

By following these simple tips the process of finding your perfect home will be a much smoother transaction.  If you need more help you can browse our vacancy list to see what we have available or call a leasing agent at (417) 337-RENT (7368).

Posted by: Thousand Hills Realty on January 5, 2017
Posted in: Uncategorized