10 Things to Check Before You Rent a New Apartment

Many house renters know that finding the right living place can be a struggle. It usually means spending hours scouring property listings online, setting up multiple viewings, and commuting to meet property agents and landlords.

The allure of a new space can cloud judgment, leading renters to overlook critical aspects that could make or break their living experience. Renting an apartment involves more than just admiring its aesthetics; it requires a diligent examination of various factors to ensure a smooth transition into your new home.


10 Must-Check Items Before Signing Your Next Apartment Lease


Here are ten essential things to check before signing the lease on your next apartment:

– Budgetary Considerations 

Before anything else, assess whether the rent fits comfortably within your budget. Don’t forget to account for additional expenses such as utilities, parking fees, and potential rent increases over time. You should spend at most 30% of your annual income on rent. In fact, according to industry standards, your total housing costs should not exceed three months’ worth of income, regardless of how much you earn. 

– Location, Location, Location 

The significance of location cannot be overstated. Location isn’t entirely subjective; it’s based on a static set of criteria. When you set out to rent a new home, make sure the neighbourhood isn’t just desirable to you but has objective qualities such as good amenities, good schools, good roads, great electricity power supply, grocery stores, and healthcare facilities that will help ensure your home is a comfortable and conducive place to live. Consider your daily commute to work and ensure it is manageable from your potential new home.


Read also: 5 Hidden Costs To Think About When Buying A Property In Lagos


– Condition of the Apartment 

Inspect the apartment thoroughly for any signs of wear and tear. Check for leaky faucets, malfunctioning appliances, mould or mildew, and cracks in walls or ceilings. Do not hesitate to bring up any concerns with the landlord or property agent before committing to the lease. Completing an apartment inspection not only guarantees that everything gets fixed to your satisfaction but also keeps your property agent from blaming you for any pre-existing problems when it’s time to move out. Before you move into the house, your property agent could even have time to take care of any problems you discover. 

– Building Amenities and Maintenance 

Take a tour of the building’s common areas and amenities, such as the gym, pool, laundry facilities, and parking garage. Assess their cleanliness, functionality, and overall condition. Inquire about the frequency of maintenance and how issues are addressed to ensure a comfortable living environment. 

While tenants can compromise some amenities, others, such as security, high-rise elevators, power backup, etc., are necessary. Tenants that have their own furniture should check before moving to a new apartment whether the new house can comfortably accommodate their goods.


Read also: How Real Estate Can Improve Nigeria’s Economy


– Lease Terms and Policies 

A lease is a legal, binding contract outlining the terms under which one party agrees to rent property owned by another party. Both landlords and tenants receive a clear set of terms and conditions that define their relationship. By doing this, each party’s rights and obligations are also outlined, which need to be signed by both parties. 

Carefully review the lease agreement and understand its terms and policies. Pay close attention to clauses regarding rent increases, subleasing, security deposit requirements, and early termination fees. Seek clarification on any ambiguous language before signing on the dotted line. 

– Tenant Rights and Responsibilities 

Familiarize yourself with your rights and responsibilities as a tenant. Understand the landlord’s obligations regarding repairs, privacy, and eviction procedures. Likewise, know what is expected of you in terms of rent payment, property upkeep, and adherence to community rules. The purpose of laws governing landlord-tenant relationships is to safeguard each party’s rights and responsibilities. The conditions of the lease agreement, which specify the obligations of the landlord and tenant, govern these interactions.  

Let’s suppose a renter violates any of the legal requirements outlined in the lease, like not paying the rent. If so, the landlord might be permitted to end the lease after giving the tenant enough notice and giving them a fair amount of time to fix the violation. Tenants are entitled to peacefully use and occupy the rental unit if they comply with their legal obligations.  


Read also: Is it legal for Real Estate Agents to charge inspection fees?


– Noise Levels and Neighbours 

One of the most crucial things to think about when looking for an apartment is Noise control. Street traffic or noisy Neighbours can easily become an annoyance and ruin your day. Sound travelling across floors is one of the most frequent complaints from tenants.  

It’s critical to enquire about the soundproofing methods in place to guarantee a quiet living environment. Spend some time in the apartment during different times of the day to gauge noise levels and the behaviour of neighbours. Excessive noise can significantly impact your quality of life, so ensure the environment is conducive to your preferences and lifestyle. 

– Safety and Security Measures 

For tenants, making sure their house is safe is of utmost importance. Prioritize your safety by assessing the apartment’s security features. Check for sturdy locks on doors and windows, well-lit hallways and parking areas, and the presence of security cameras or on-site security personnel. Research crime rates in the area to gauge overall safety.  

It’s crucial to let your landlord know about your plans to install a home security system and get their approval before proceeding. Do some research on the various security systems available and the installation requirements before contacting your landlord. Be ready to address any worries they may have and go over the advantages of the system.


Read also: Securing Your Home Loan: The Importance and Steps For Mortgage Pre-Approval In Lagos


– Accessibility and Mobility 

Consider your mobility needs, especially if you have disabilities or rely on public transportation. Evaluate factors such as elevator access, wheelchair accessibility, and the availability of nearby amenities for individuals with limited mobility.  

Assessing the property’s or the project’s closeness to a major transit route, preferably one with many entry and exit points, should be your focus when it comes to accessibility. Although getting to your house should not be too difficult, there should still be enough space to allow you to live in a tranquil environment. 

– Future Plans and Flexibility 

Think about your long-term plans and whether the apartment aligns with them. Tenants can spend their funds on other significant elements of their lives, like education, investments, or starting a business.  

Your house rent being flexible guarantees you won’t worry about having a long-term financial commitment to adjust in case of changing financial circumstances. Consider factors such as lease duration, flexibility for renewal or relocation, and the potential for lifestyle changes such as starting a family or changing jobs when renting a house. 

Renting a new apartment is a significant decision that warrants careful consideration and a thorough inspection. By prioritizing these vital checks, you can ensure a smooth transition into your new home and enjoy a comfortable and fulfilling living experience. Remember, an informed renter is a happy renter. 

Read more articles like this on our website, www.buyletlive.com. Also, send us your comments, feedback and contributions to research@buyletlive.com   

3 thoughts on “10 Things to Check Before You Rent a New Apartment”

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