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What to Look For Before Renting a House

With the real estate market still working to get back on its feet, many people are wary of purchasing homes outright in an environment they still see as unstable. For this reason, rental properties are filling up quickly in many cities, and potential renters aren't able to be quite as picky as before. Does this mean you have to settle? Or rush into a home only to find that renting it for a year may be unbearable? No way.

There are still considerations you should take before signing a lease, and there are still property management companies make renting a safe, thoughtful and practical process.

Here are a few things to think about before renting a property.


Location is often the first thing to come to mind before making a move. How far is the property from your work, grocery stores, banks and schools? Although you're not buying, you still want the property to be conveniently located.

Also, the location within the neighborhood is important. Think about the amount of traffic that will pass by your house. Is it on a corner where cars will be stopping at traffic lights or four ways? Is it on a busy street that will be difficult to pull your car onto in the morning? Are there streetlights near your windows?


This is a common sense consideration but one that people often don't give enough thought. Think about the stability of your job; how much it will cost to heat and cool the home; maintenance fees; and what type of appliances or energy saving features are in place.

It's also important to be clear on the timing of the payments. If your rent is due on the 5th and that day falls on a Sunday one month - your landlord is unavailable or the rental office is closed - are you penalized for dropping rent on Monday? What about holiday interference? Avoid miscommunication and late fees by asking these questions upfront.

Repairs, Maintenance and Privacy

Who is responsible for repairing the hot water heater if it malfunctions? Is someone going to prune shrubs and mow the lawn? If you're renting an apartment, ask about annual carpet cleaning and other maintenance fees. Is trash pickup included?

Also, your privacy is important. Does your landlord have to give you notice before dropping by? Does he or she keep spare keys to your property? It's common for leases to stipulate that the owner of the property can enter at will, so be sure to ask about the privacy understanding before renting.

Security Deposit

One of the nicest things about moving out of a rental is the return of your security deposit, which in many cases includes first and last month's rent - this can be a large sum of money that you can use to pay future deposits on your new place. Before moving in, ask the property owner what he or she expects from you to guarantee the return of your deposit.

If you're considering renting and still have doubts, questions, or simply need some additional advice, contact a property management company that is familiar with the rental market in your area. Often, these agencies will have pre-screened, reputable rental properties you can peruse if you're having a hard time finding the right home on your own.

About Author Drew Barton :

There are still considerations you should take before signing a lease, and there are still property management companies make renting a safe, thoughtful and practical process.Contact Boundless Management, Atlanta's property management company, for more information. Their website address is <a href="" target="_blank"></a>.

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Article Added on Sunday, July 29, 2012
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