Have you found a good home to rent? Great! Before you sign a lease, it’s a good idea to make sure you’ve considered all the important factors. You’ve probably already thought about items such as location, budget, size, pets, and parking. Is there anything you’ve forgotten to ask about? Here’s a good checklist to help you make sure you’re ready to move forward.
- How much is the rent? When is it due? Is there a late fee?
- How often does rent increase?
- What is the lease period? Is that flexible — either longer or shorter (and if so, does that affect the rent)?
- What happens when the lease concludes: do you sign a new one, go month-to-month, or something else?
- What utilities will you need to arrange? What do they typically cost? Are any included in the rent?
- Are there any other expenses (e.g. yardwork, parking, etc.)?
- How much security deposit is required?
- If you have a pet: do you need a yard? Is there a size limit? Additional deposit required, and is it refunded?
- Do you need renter’s insurance?
- What kind of customizations are allowed (painting, wall hangings, curtains, etc.), and will the landlord pick up any of that expense?
- What do you do if there is an issue, e.g. an appliance breaks? How quickly can you expect a response?
- Is smoking allowed?
- Do you have the parking you need?
- Are you in the area of town you targeted?
- How close are the neighbors? Is it likely to be private? Quiet at night?
- Do you have the appliances you need or are there hookups (particularly washer and dryer)?
- Do you have the storage space you need?
- Can you walk to neighborhood attractions, parks, public transportation?