When looking to rent a new apartment or home, there’s a lot on our minds. We’re thinking about money and work and our lifestyles (and celebrating finally getting away from that one awful roommate). It can be easy to overlook things in eagerness. The following will explore some of the things you need to keep in mind when searching for apartments.
Consider The Plumbing
It might feel sort of weird, but it’s an excellent idea to test out the plumbing in a place you’re considering renting. You’ll be happy you did if you catch some sort of plumbing problem before you sign any paperwork. Turn on all of the taps, kitchen, bathroom, and shower. See how long it takes for the water to get hot and cold. Is it clear? Does it have a smell? Stop the sinks and let them fill up a bit with water. Note how long it takes them to drain. Fill sinks and drain them all at the same time while flushing the toilet—any changes? Flush the toilet. Does it refill quickly? Or does it glug and choke and cause a brutal rattling sound in the pipes in the walls?
Touch The Windows
Normally, you don’t want to be touching the windows because that means more fingerprints and more washing. However, when looking at a place to rent, it’s a good idea to feel along the edges of window panes. You’ll know real quick if there’s a draft of cold air (or hot polluted city air). This is going to change the cost of your utilities and might end up influencing your comfort levels as well.
Explore The Neighborhood
Drive or walk around at different times of the day. You want to know what it’s like after dark and during rush hour. You want to see how the neighbors are—how loud is their music? How whiny and screechy are their kids? Is there a mistreated dog with a chip on his shoulder nearby? Landlords tend to know what time of day to show their units for the best results. You might be seeing things during a sleepy morning with golden light, and might find something totally different the first night you stay in the place. If you don’t explore the neighborhood at different times, you might not know you’re going to be listening to techno music and smelling smoke every time you step out on the balcony because of the people who live in the unit below. You also want to know what’s close by. We all try to have excellent willpower and make good financial and health choices, but having a McDonald’s next door is going to result in a lot more temptation than you’re used to. Likewise, maybe getting groceries is going to be way more of a hassle as there’s only one boutique, hyper-expensive shop nearby whereas the grocery store with all the deals is halfway across town.
Understand The Rules
Yes, technically there are a lot of things that landlords say that they’re not allowed to say. You might live in a place where telling people they’re not allowed to have pets is actually illegal. There’s probably nothing that could be done if you decide to smoke inside your own unit that’s advertised as non-smoking. This being said, you don’t want to have a difficult relationship with your landlord. You don’t need the headache of it. In finding the perfect apartment, you should consider the one that suits your lifestyle. You also don’t want to be irritating your neighbors all the time. We all have enough stress in our lives, our homes should be a place of peace where we don’t have to hide or sneak around, where we don’t have to expect arguments with acquaintances.
Look For Signs Of Mice Or Rats
If you’ve never had mice, you probably aren’t expecting them to be in your house or apartment. If you’ve had them, you know to keep your eyes open for any signs of droppings, scratching, gnawing, or mice smells. Look inside all the cupboards and beneath the sink. Get on your knees and look at where the kitchen counters meet the floor. Getting rid of mice is a nightmare (and for many people horrific, because even the no-kill traps are messy and tragic). Beyond this, while you’re in the process of getting rid of them, you’re not going to be sleeping well because you’ll hear the scurrying and digging throughout the night and you’re going to be stressing over whether or not they got into the crackers and constantly worried about the quality of your food because it is unbelievably hard to keep things away from mice once they’re inside your home.
The above tips should help you visit potential apartments and make a choice that’s right for you. It might take a few viewings, but it’s always better to be safe than sorry when it comes to your living situation. You want things to be safe and healthy and not end up costing you way more than you were prepared to pay.