6 Questions To Ask Before You Sign The Lease
So you have been looking and looking for a new apartment or home to rent, and then all of a sudden… you find it! The exact apartment or home to rent in Houston has finally appeared on the Houston housing market and everything seems to be aligning perfectly.
Before you sign that lease and call your Houston Moving Company, pause for a second to make sure you are asking all of the right questions. Be fully aware of what important aspects of renting that might not be apparent right away and know where to conduct further investigation before signing a lease.
Finding the perfect home takes so much time and can be very draining. Though it may be tempting to begin to rush after your search begins to take longer than you expected, it is worth it to make sure you are thorough. Take your time to get the correct information and consider your needs for the entirety of the lease agreement.
You will be in this apartment or house for at least six months when you sign your lease. It is a good idea to ask plenty of questions and be very clear on every aspect of your lease and expectations for both parties. You the renter, and the landlord or apartment manager, need to set clear expectations upfront. Taking these extra measures may even lead you to find something that you can negotiate with your landlord before moving in that will make your lease much more enjoyable. Here are 6 questions to ask when you are renting a home or apartment.
Here are 6 questions to ask when you are renting a home or apartment.
1. Can I paint after I move in? Normally, the landlord will put a fresh coat of paint on the walls before you move in. Many people don’t want to mess with painting, if they know they will only be living there for a few months or a year at the most. In this instance, you may be content with the white or cream color paint that is typically painted on the walls of rental properties. You may want to consider asking about your options on painting if you are planning on renting for more than one lease term. Paint is a great way to personalize a rental home or apartment. The policy changes from property to property and this is a great question to ask upfront. Asking this before you move in may allow you to schedule painting before you move in, and not have to paint around your furniture if the landlord or apartment manager says that is acceptable.
2. How will I be paying my rent every month? Typically, for large complexes, apartment movers find that the landlord has an office provided for the tenant to drop a check off at every month. This drop box may be in the leasing office or off property. Apartment moving is a hectic time and asking this question upfront may save you a step when it comes time to make your first rent payment. With renting a home, you may find that your landlord can provide you with easier electronic ways to pay your rent than sending a check out every month. Conversely, your bank likely offers a recurring bill pay service free of charge, saving you the hassle of remembering and writing a check each month.
3. Can the rent be lowered at all? The asking price on a new apartment or rental home is almost always negotiable. It is better to ask about this after filling out all paperwork and getting approved for the apartment, but before you sign. That way the landlord knows that you are serious about moving in, and wants to close the deal after spending the time to complete all the paperwork. Offering to extend your lease may get your rent lowered too. You may also find that even if the actual rent doesn’t get lowered, the landlord may still cut extra costs like the deposit, additional fees, or offer you upgraded parking options.
4. Is anything included in the rent for my new apartment in Houston that I don’t already know about? You need to know if the rent includes heating, water, electricity, cable or wireless internet. You will be signing many forms when moving into your new home or apartment, and sometimes it is easy to overlook things. Instead of expecting to see the paperwork on it, ask specifically about any extra bills that may be included in the rent.
5. What is the landlord’s policy on who can enter the residence and when? If you enjoy privacy, keep away from a lease that gives the landlord unlimited access without notification. Tenants should know the landlords policy on this and agree with it before signing anything. If agreed on prior to move in, the landlord should only be permitted to enter the property without advance notice in emergency situations only.
Congratulations on finding your new home and good luck!