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My family and I have been renting for a number of years and due to work, school location and personal reasons, we have moved a few times. In fact, we just recently moved to a new apartment a few months ago so we could be closer to family. So, let’s just say that over the past few years, I’ve learned a few important things that you need to consider when looking for an apartment.
When looking for a place to live, there are several important factors that you need to think about before making a decision. Below are 3 of what I think are the most important items that you need to look into before signing the lease.
This will probably dictate a big portion of your decision when it comes to rental hunting. Identify how much you can afford because this can impact the location and the type of rental that you should be looking into. If your main deciding factor is location, then spend some time doing a bit of market research. Find out how much apartments or rentals cost in a specific area, this way, you can have a ballpark figure of how much you need to budget.
Understanding the market value of certain neighborhoods can help you identify red flags. For example, the average cost of a 1-bedroom apartment in Miami is $1,970, according to research by Zumper. If you find a rental that seems to be way below the average rental price in this area, you may want to find out what’s the catch. It is best that you are up to date with real-time trends in rent prices before you make a decision.
Integrity of the House
Don’t make your decisions based on the pictures that see you on the listings. Landlords usually stage the place before posting the rental online. It is best that you inspect the place personally so you can see the real set-up. Look beyond the cosmetics and check walls, ceilings, and plumbing. Moving in to a place that turns out to be bug-infested, has leaks when it rains, or has molds is going to give your more problems. You don’t want to be spending time and money on getting things repaired.
It is also very important that you check for safety issues. Faulty electrical wirings, ventilation problems, flooding, these are things that you do not want to expose your family to so make sure to thoroughly check everything personally. You can even hire a professional to go with you during your ocular visit.
If you can, do a little background or character check on the landlord- If it’s a complex, check with your future neighbors to find out what kind of relationship they have with the landlord. I’ve heard so many horror stories from other people regarding unresponsive or disrespectful landlords. This may sound like a trivial matter right now but you don’t want to be stuck with a terrible landlord and be in a 2-year lease.
My family and I are lucky because our landlord right now is a considerate and kind being who also happens to be a family doctor and lives right next door. But believe me, we’ve also experienced dealing with terrible landlords who does not care about the renters welfare as long as they get the money.
There are many other factors that you may need to look into when looking for the perfect apartment for your family like the neighborhood safety, proximity to work and schools, and such but the 3 that I mentioned above are what I consider as non-negotiable items that you need to research on before signing the lease.
Happy house hunting!
A family lifestyle blogger who left her corporate job in Cebu for a slower life in Iligan City, Philippines. Healthline – Best Mom Blogs 2017, ESCooped – Cebu’s Top Family Blogger 2016, Top 10 Blogs Voice Boks Comedy Edition, Bloggys 2015 – Finalist, Family and Relationships Category, featured on BlogHer.com and HumorWriters.org. Jhanis also works as a Freelance Writer/Content Creator and manages a small farm house decor business when she’s not taking naps.