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5 Things To Ask About Before Signing An Apartment Lease

So, you've found what you believe to be your dream apartment—and you want to get the lease signed before somebody nabs it from you. Remember, however, that a lease is a legally binding agreement, and there are some important details you'll want to discuss with your future landlord before you decide to sign that lease and enter into that agreement.

Early Lease Termination

First of all, know how long your lease term will be and what will happen if you need to get out of it early. You might not plan on needing to break your lease, but you never know. Some landlords will allow you to find somebody to take over your lease with no penalty, whereas others may charge you a fee for breaking your lease regardless.

Renters Insurance Requirements

Some landlords these days will require you to carry renters insurance and show proof of your insurance before you move in. It's a good idea to have this coverage anyways, but if you're against paying for it, then you'll want to make sure that your landlord doesn't require it before you sign the lease.

Maintenance Availability

How available will maintenance be when you need something fixed? Will you be given an immediate contact number to your community's maintenance department, or will you need to contact the leasing office and put in a work order? Furthermore, you'll want to find out how your landlord's maintenance department handles emergencies. Will you have an emergency number you can contact in the event of an after-hours problem?

Rental Rate Guarantees

When you sign your lease, your rental rate should be guaranteed for the length of your lease term. However, what will happen when it comes time to renew? Will you be guaranteed to keep the same rental rate for as long as you live in the complex? If not, then you should be prepared for a rent increase after your initial lease term is up--especially if you're signing your lease during a special.

Decorations and Painting

Last but not least, if you plan on doing any decorating or modifications to your apartment, make sure you know what's allowed versus what's not so that you don't end up losing out of your security deposit. For example, are you allowed to paint? If so, do you need to repaint your apartment a neutral color before you move out? You'll also want to find out whether or not you'll allowed to hang shelves or anything else on the walls.

Talk to a company like Dale Forest Apartments for more information on apartment rental.