Due to the current state of our country’s harsh economy and distraught housing market, it seems more sensible to rent a home these days instead of buying one.
Although purchasing a home may be seem like a better option, several experts have predicted that overall prices of homes will continue to drop so in the next few years, buying a home can be much cheaper than it is now.
Also, since houses and condominiums aren’t selling as well as before, many of the owners and developers are willing to rent these places out. Since the number of home rent is so widely available, this gives the renter the better option to haggle the overall prices of rent they are willing to pay and ultimately the power to negotiate. Along with rent negotiations, at times landlords are willing to negotiate security deposits, costs of utilities, and offer free first months to individuals who are seeking homes for rent.
While it may seem like the overall power of negotiation has shifted to the renters seeking homes for rent, renters should be well aware of their rights before seeking home rent. Whether you are a renter of short-term housing, long-term, or even a young individual seeking his/her first home for rent, the following tips can help you notify and avoid potential downfalls of seeking home rent.
1. Research and expertise on the local rental market. One key tip for renters is to always avoid renting the first place you find. Shopping around and visiting several different places can be of great benefit since you have the power to compare prices, utilities, and amenities offered. Also checking local classified ads as well as sites like Craig list can yield a number of potential places to visit and research.
2. Take at whatever lease they are offering closely. Unless the lease says something else, the landlord has no right to raise your rent during the overall term of your lease. At the same time, the lease you are committed to states the exact amount of rent payments. In specific cases where you have to move out, explaining your reason in full detail to the landlord so no penalties or lawsuits come about from this issue.
3. Understand security deposits in full detail. Typically, landlords or owners are responsible to collect security deposits from renters to cover any unpaid rent or damage to the place of rent. As mentioned in the beginning of this article, you as a renter may have the power to negotiate the overall amount of the security deposit since the housing market are at a downfall right now. If you negotiations are not in order and the security deposit is pretty much set, remember that all security deposits can be refunded. Also, before you move in to a home rent, make sure to do a full walk through with the landlord or owner and write down any previous damages that were made by a renter before you. This can help you as a renter to avoid any costs later on for damages that you had no responsibility over. Finally, taking care of your home for rent is a major part of being a responsible renter and can ultimately help you avoid any costs, issues, or lawsuits.
4. Value your privacy. Generally, landlords or owners cannot just enter your home for rent without giving you some kind of notice in advance. Specific rules to this particular issue do vary from state to state, so it is highly important to fully understand when your landlord or owner can enter your home. In certain states, landlords and owners are typically allowed to enter the rental properties in cases of emergencies, reasons for repair, and when an open house is available for the home rent. Since these privacy issues vary from state to state, it is the main responsibility of the renter to understand and know these rules.
5. Knowledge on repairs. Owners and landlords alike are mainly responsible for keeping their homes for rent in good condition. Generally speaking, this means the home for rent should have electricity, heat, water, and should be safe to live in. Any cosmetic issues or repairs are not the sole responsibility of the owner or landlord since that is one issue that can be altered by the renter. However, if repairs are needed for “living” purposes such as water, electricity, and heat, the landlord or owner of the home rent has to take care of the issue at hand.
6. Renters Insurance. Just like homeowners have insurance, renters insurance is generally the same thing where it mainly covers losses to your property from a number of accidents or emergencies such as fire, lightning, storms, explosions, smoke, vandalism, theft, falling objects, accidents from cars, and most weather related damages. However, damages from floods are not covered and have to be bought separately. While many may think the cost of renters insurance is ridiculously high, with a little research, renters may find several plans that are easily affordable for protecting your home rent.
7. Always stay safe. When seeking homes for rent, one key aspect to consider is the location of the home. Regardless if the neighborhood is safe or not, there is always a risk of crime so researching these areas by visiting the local police department or obtaining crime statistics can be a great choice. At the same time, if you have children, it is crucial to check for local sex offenders that may live nearby. This can be done through various free online sites or by visiting the local police station for information.