Renting a house may seem simple but it requires a bit of work before you can move in. If you don’t carry out some of the preliminary standard procedures, you may find you end up with a contract that goes against your interests or a clause that later creates problems. Here are a few things to bear in mind before renting a house.
1. Do The Legwork On Renting
There is no substitute for thorough and careful research on renting. Learn as much as you can about the area or neighborhood where you are planning to rent a house. Introducing yourself to some of your immediate neighbors is also a good idea to get a feel for whether or not you’ll be comfortable in your new rented premises. You may also want to take note of other considerations such as the distance of the house from the nearest hospital, your workplace or your child’s school, etc.
2. Check Built-Ins
It is a lot of hassle to get the landlord to fix broken items once after you’ve moved in. If the house comes with built-in appliances and furniture, definitely check if all of them work to a satisfactory level. If something doesn’t work, request the landlord to repair it before you sign a rental agreement. It is also vital to discuss the landlord’s general policy about costs incurred if items like the water heater break down or there are plumbing leaks.
Furthermore, for your own peace of mind, do a complete and exhaustive inventory of all the items present in the house so there is no confusion later on with anyone else’s belongings. Recording the state of the appliances, pipes, circuitry, and even fixtures is a good practice to follow so you have proof if something was already damaged when you moved in.
3. Ask The Questions
A rental agreement is based on a mutual understanding of the terms. If you have any questions during the renting process feel free to ask the landlord. Start with whether or not he/she will get the house painted before you move in. As well as carry out other required maintenance activities. If you were going on a short vacation you could probably use short-term rental software. A medium to long-term house rental requires a lot of thought and quite a bit of paperwork.
4. Break And Release Clauses
A tenancy agreement has a number of clauses that need to be carefully read and discussed. One of them is the break clause which outlines when your tenancy will end. For example 6 months or a year. Similarly, the release clause outlines the process of you terminating your agreed time period prematurely. For example, choosing to leave before 3-6 months. In many cases, these clauses vary according to the area you are living. Check with the relevant authorities beforehand.
5. Pet Restrictions For Renting
All localities are not alike when it comes to pets. Furthermore, certain homeowners may simply be against allowing pets like cats and dogs on their property. If your landlord lives on the premises and has allergies they may be against you keeping pets in the house. Check beforehand whether or not pets will be allowed in your new rental home Hiding this can have consequences in the future such as possible eviction.
6. Deposits And Guarantors
The deposit amount that you need to pay upfront varies with each homeowner. This is simply a matter you will need to discuss early on when you are negotiating and inspecting the property. In some cases, the deposit may be higher because the landlord is undergoing costly renovations. He or she wants the new tenant to pitch in. If the landlord is paying a roofing contractor or a landscaper to beautify the property, you may find the deposit amount is steeper than elsewhere.
Generally, landlords will ask you for a guarantor even if you’ve been at your current job for several years. This is a safety clause from the landlord’s side to minimize their risk in subletting the house. However, every landlord may not ask for a guarantor especially if you’ve been referred to them in some way. Lastly, know that your deposit money is not meant to be spent by the landlord. It is actually supposed to be held in a deposit scheme within a fixed time limit.