Many cities have friendly neighborhoods with great properties. However, it’s important to know what to look for in a rental listing, so you can make a smart assessment about each rental listing you’re interested in.
Use this rental property viewing checklist to stay organized and prepared when viewing properties.
- What is the cost of rent?
Clarify the asking price to guarantee you don’t overpay. If the landlord states a higher rent price than listed, highlight the inconsistency to be sure you get the lower advertised price.
- Is there an application process or screening criteria?
Ask the landlord to explain their application and screening processes, and ask about application fees. A thorough screening process shows the landlord is careful about finding good renters.
- What payment methods are accepted for rent?
Landlords can choose which forms of payment they will accept. However, some landlords make it easy for tenants and allow tenants to pay rent online . The option of online payment allows for automation, security, and convenience for both tenant and landlord.
- What is the procedure for submitting a maintenance request? Who makes the repairs?
You want to be sure the landlord appropriately manages the property and responds quickly to repair requests. Clarify the maintenance procedure and confirm there is a plan in place for repairs. When viewing a property, inspect the current condition because it will offer clues to the upkeep routines of the landlord.
- Are furnishings and appliances included?
It is common for renters to provide their own appliances and furnishings. However, this is not always the case. If the unit is furnished, be sure to ask exactly what is included in the contract so there are no surprises when you move in.
- Is there any water damage or mold related issues to disclose?
Asking this question and having proper documentation of the answer can save you down the line if problems should occur. Landlords are bound by law to provide a home with a healthy environment for their tenants. No home should have ongoing water damage issues and/or mold growth at any time during your lease.
- Does it fit the budget?
Be realistic about expenses. Confirm the property fits your budget so you are able to pay bills on time, build savings and still have money for entertainment and travel.