Apartment hunting can seem like an overwhelming task. Between choosing the area you want to live in, checking out the community amenities and ensuring you like the floor plan of the unit – there is a lot of ground to cover. During this process, it's easy to overlook some important details pertaining to the property. Here are just some of the important questions you want to ask before you sign your lease to see if the property is going to be a good fit for your needs.
Many lease agreements come along with a visitor policy. Some agreements allow a guest to stay for an unlimited number of nights while others put tough restrictions on the number of nights a guest can occupy a unit. For example, one management company might only allow guests for up to three days. These restrictions help ensure only a safe number of people are inhabiting a unit at a time and ensures the management company has an accurate account of who is occupying their units.
Having a guest stay beyond this period is actually a violation of your lease agreement and could come with penalties. If you typically have a lot of extended visitors make sure you get all the details about the subject to ensure the property meets your needs and you know how to plan your guest's visits in the future.
Even a well-maintained property will likely need maintenance at some point during the duration of a lease. In fact, this is a scenario you should pretty much plan on. Make sure you understand the policy for repairs before signing the lease. First, ask about maintenance availability. Does the maintenance team respond to requests within a certain period, such as one business day, or do you need to make an appointment?
You also want to understand what type of repairs they are responsible for. Take an apartment with vaulted ceilings, for example. Some management companies will change any light bulbs in high ceiling areas as part of maintenance and some apartment won't. Additionally, there are some apartment management companies that even allow tenants to handle minor maintenance issues on their own and deduct the amount from their rent. Knowing this information beforehand can help you plan accordingly.
The more you know about the apartment you plan to rent before signing a lease, the more satisfied you will be. Remember, an apartment isn't just a rental, but it's your home, so make sure it's the right fit.