5 Things to Consider Before Renting a Home

Moving into a new home is bound to be exciting. In fact, you might be so eager to receive the keys that you fail to ask the right questions or perform your own research. To ensure you don’t make a property mistake, read these five things to consider before renting a home.
Research the Neighborhood

Before you even think about signing up to a rental agreement, you must first research the neighborhood. The area you choose to live could determine your general happiness within the property. For instance, noisy neighbors may keep you up at night. It also may not be near public transportation, which can make the daily commute to work a little difficult.

We therefore recommend hanging out in the local area, learning more about the neighborhood’s crime statistics, and ensuring stores, hospitals and public transport are within close proximity. Plus, if you have kids, you might want to make sure the home is in a good school district.

Ask Your Landlord About Pets

You will not want to sign-up for a rental agreement to later discover your feline friend or pet pooch can’t move in with you. It’s vital to negotiate bringing a pet into the property with a landlord in advance. While there are Pensacola apartments that allow up to two pets, other landlords might not be as welcoming.   If he or she does not want an animal living in the property, you will know to look elsewhere for your new home. While it might be disappointing, it would be heartbreaking to have to leave your pet behind.

Look for Structural Problems

You might love the size of the rooms and the neighborhood, but don’t be fooled by the location and aesthetics. You must carefully inspect the property before you move in, so you can negotiate any maintenance issues before you sign an agreement.

For instance, turn on the faucet to test the water pressure, look for signs of dampness or mold on the walls and windows, and ask the landlord to fix any electrical faults before he or she hands over the keys. Check the water heater and kitchen appliances as well.  If a landlord refuses to fix the problems, cut your losses and return to the drawing board.

Identify if a Contract has a Release Clause

The last thing you will want is to be tied to a property when you want to move on. You must therefore identify if a contract has a break or release clause. A break clause allows a fixed-term tenancy to be ended at six months, as long as there are no rental arrears. While a release clause allows a tenant to pay a fee to release them from their contract at any time. A tenant may also have to find another person to replace them. Sometimes, you may have the option to rent month to month, but the monthly rent would be higher.

Find out the Rental Deposit and What it Covers

Many landlords will often require tenants to pay one month’s rent in advance before they receive the keys. However, the amount will be at the landlord’s discretion, as some may ask for six weeks or more, while some might not require a deposit. Speak to your landlord so you have a clear understanding of the initial deposit and what it will cover.  Some landlords may keep part of the deposit if they have to clean after you leave or if they find any damages, which would be another good reason for that inspection mentioned above.

Good Luck looking for your new rental home.  Do you have anything to add to this list?

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