Be Clear About Your Budget
One of the most important things you have to do when you’re preparing to rent is to determine how much you can afford to spend on rent. You want to ensure you can afford the rental property and still have a money left over for other bills such as food, cable bill, cell phone bill, etc.
It’s also important to set aside money for the beginning of the rental process. For instance, you may have to pay a deposit to reserve the rental property. There may also be a charge for the landlord to run your credit report. Keep these charges in mind during your rental search.
Inspect the Property
Once you find the rental property you want, inspect the place thoroughly. If something needs to be repaired, or you notice that an appliance isn’t functioning at its best, let the landlord know right away. You want to make sure that you’re living in the best conditions possible. A detailed inspection will also let your landlord know how to improve the property before you move in, and ensures that you won’t be responsible for damages you didn’t cause.
Know Your Responsibilities
Finally, remember that you have responsibilities as a renter. Be clear on the rules that pertain to living in the rental property before you sign your lease. For instance, your rent is due on a specific date, but you may have a grace period, so be sure to coordinate your rent payments accordingly. Also, you may be required to pay certain bills such as water and utilities to the landlord directly. Find out if these bills are due on the same day of the month as the rent, or if you have to pay them on separate dates.