Locating the perfect apartment home can be a hassle unless you’re prepared to conduct a thorough assessment of all the potential properties. The razzle-dazzle sales pitch and the initial awe of finding an apartment with one or two desirable features can make you lose sight of the bigger picture. The key to finding flaws in an apartment is smart, thorough research using all the tools at your disposal.
Measure Twice, Cut Once
Every property comes with pros and cons. The pros tend to stand out upon your first inspection, while the cons may take some extra effort to spot. The following activities can help you identify and eliminate apartments that aren’t right for your wants and needs.
Experience the Neighborhood
The neighborhood you’ll be moving into can have as much of an effect on your living experience as the apartment itself. Make a list of every aspect of your daily life and check how easily you’ll be able to accomplish them in the new area.
- If you have to commute to work, simulate the commute from the apartment you’re looking into renting.
- Check the parking situation at different hours of the day, on weekdays and weekends to determine if finding a convenient parking space will be a hassle.
- Visit the property during various hours of the day and night to check for loud music and other undesirable behavior by other tenants.
- Contact the local police precinct to gather more information about crime in the neighborhood.
Leave No Stone Unturned
When inspecting the property, it is essential to have a checklist of questions and to make sure that each one is answered clearly.
- If you have pets ask about fees, policies, and protocols.
- Check for, and ask about, mold, mildew and their prevalence in other apartments in the building.
- Inspect the stove, heaters, AC, refrigerator and plumbing for wear and tear, and ask about maintenance frequency.
- Ask about the prevalence of insects in the area and what they do to deter infestation.
- Take the time to read the lease and ask questions about anything on it that you don’t completely understand.
- Come to a clear understanding of when the rent is due and any grace periods that may be offered.
- Ask for a written agreement on the initial condition of the apartment, and the criteria for a full deposit refund when you decide to leave.
Consider Using an Apartment Locating Service
If all this seems a little overwhelming, you should consider using an apartment locator service to help save time and money.
Apartment locators are especially helpful for busy professionals, and parents of small children.
Apartment locating services can be found in virtually every area of the country, and their fees are typically paid by the property owners so there’s no cost to you.
The entire Dallas / Fort Worth apartment market is at an all-time high occupancy rate, which makes it much harder for people to find the right apartment for their needs and budget. Using an apartment locating service can save you a lot of time and hassle, and because the fees are paid by the property owners, there’s no charge for the services.
Simply tell the apartment locating service what you’re interested in, and you’ll be given a personalized list of the available properties that meet your wants and needs. Most services will also provide you with:
- Maps, photos, and floorplans.
- Rent, utilities, and maintenance pricing information.
- An overview of neighborhood schools, shops, and transit options.
- Parking availability.
Some of these tips may seem like common sense, but they require a planned effort nonetheless. The ideal approach is to combine your own assessment with that of a capable apartment locating service. Doing this will ensure that you’re perfectly equipped to make an informed decision and avoid renting an apartment that ultimately isn’t right for you and your family.