10 Questions to Ask When Renting an Apartment

Are you looking for your first apartment or on the hunt for a new space? Here are some questions to ask before you pick a new place to call home.

Stylish, open floorplan apartment with a connecting kitchen.

#1: What is the Cost of Rent and Utilities?

The cost of your apartment depends on location, amenities, size and time of year. Rent can fluctuate, so finding out how much rent costs should be the first topic you discuss. Some apartment communities include certain utilities in your rent. However, you may be responsible for paying for other utilities, such as electricity, gas, water, garbage and internet access.

#2: How Are Utilities Paid?

An apartment community could have an online portal for rental payments while others might require a written check. If you’re covering utilities, ask the property management team if you pay them or need to go directly to the companies the complex uses.

#3: How Much is the Security Deposit for the Apartment?

It’s important to talk about all potential expenses so you can calculate your budget. Most apartment application processes include a security deposit. The amount varies, but it could be one- or two-months’ rent. Don’t forget to ask about getting your security deposit back if you move out.

#4: What is The Average Cost of Utilities?

Landlords or property managers should be able to provide insight into the cost of utilities. What do similarly sized units pay for monthly expenses? You could also talk with current residents if they’re open to discussing it. Utility companies are good sources of information to learn more about rates.

#5: What Amenities Are Included?

Community amenities might include a fitness center, pool, community rooms, workstations and pet areas. Inquire about apartment amenities like a washer and dryer, balcony or patio and storage. Those features may determine the items you’ll need when you move.

#6: What’s the Pet Policy for Apartments?

There are usually extra expenses to consider if you’re renting an apartment with a dog or cat. Some communities have breed and weight restrictions. Ask about monthly pet fees, especially if you have multiple animals. Where are the designated areas for pets to play and relieve themselves?

#7: Are There Fees for Late Payments or Early Termination?

Find out when rent is deemed late and if there’s a grace period. Clarify if there’s a fee for late rental payments.

Unexpected circumstances might compel you to break your lease agreement, so inquire about early termination fees as well. Depending on when you end your lease, you may still have to pay out the rest of the rental agreement.

#8: Do I Need Renters Insurance?

There are misconceptions about renters insurance. Not all apartment communities require renters insurance, but it’s important to consider it. That type of insurance protects your possessions in the event of fire, vandalism and burglary.

#9: How Soon Can You Rent the Apartment?

It’s important to ask that question so you can plan your move date and start packing. If the property management team is eager to fill units, you could negotiate the terms of your lease in exchange for a short move-in date.

#10: What Is Parking Like for Renters?

You may have access to covered or uncovered parking spaces, and some living communities also offer garages. Talk with the property management team to determine if there are assigned spots and where visitors park.

Find Your New Apartment in Columbus, Ohio!

Ardent Communities has a wide variety of apartments and townhomes that are packed with amenities and conveniently located around Columbus, Ohio. Connect with us to learn about availability and schedule a tour.

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