When you rent a home, your landlord will unfortunately become part of your life. With that said, it’s imperative you ask all the right questions before entering into an agreement with them. Here are five often overlooked questions you absolutely should ask.
What’s the general condition of the home? Is it held together with duct tape and a prayer? Have major repairs been done in the recent past like new electric, new pipes, flooring, etc. You’ll want to know the condition of the walls, ceilings and floors. Are the windows tight, or do they invite ice sold wind to blow through your home Is there water damage, and smelly or is it beautifully maintained and clean?
How will your requests for repairs handled? You’ll want to know how quickly they’re handled and by whom. What happens if something breaks on a holiday or weekend? Are you allowed to call in for repairs and they’ll reimburse you after? Do they have an an account with a particular service provider? No one wants to live with a broken toilet or clogged drain over a holiday weekend.
Utilities? Some landlords include all utilities and cable. Some just water and trash and some include nothing at all. You’ll want to know exactly what your monthly bills are going to be before you commit to renting a home. Also check out where the heat sources are and if they’re effective, and the same with air. You should find out if the landlord wants to sell my Dallas County house or sell my Tarrant County house. If so, you may be able to become an own instead of a renter.
Parking, Where’s My Spot? Some homes come with a garage or assigned parking and for others it’s street parking only. If that’s the case you’ll want to know if you’ll be circling the block every evening, or if the street is usually empty. You might need a parking pass, and you’ll want to know the rate of car break-ins. Check it out before you’re stuck there for a year.
Is my security deposit refundable? These deposits can be tricky, and most tenants don’t exactly know what they are and aren’t responsible for when they leave a rental, ultimately gambling with their money. You’ll want to know the exact terms of the deposit, where the landlord holds it, and if any part is non-refundable. Be sure to go through the move in inspection, take pictures, videos and make notes, but also ask for a move out checklist of everything you’ll be held responsible for and the costs.
Renting a home can be a simple way to live, as long as you know what you’re getting into before you take your furniture through the front door. Get to know your landlord a bit and get them to help see what living there will be like. This is one area where doing your research and asking lot of questions will really benefit you.