8 Red Flags Every Renter Should Look Out For

Whether you are about to start renting your first apartment or you have moved around lots, it is important to be cautious before signing anything. In this video, Tasha shares some red flags that you should watch out for before you rent an apartment or house.

Hi i’m tasha from one big happy life on behalf of the financial diet and this is the lifestyle fix brought to you by curiosity stream choosing a place to live is a significant financial decision no matter what stage of life you’re in i’ve done my share of renting over the years so i know that a good landlord can make or break your renting experience a great landlord

Can make you never want to leave and a bad landlord or a bad rental property can add a lot of stress to your day-to-day life there’s so much to think about when you’re on the hunt for a new place to live that sometimes you can miss the warning signs for potential problems or even fall prey to rental scams in today’s video i’m gonna point out 8 red flags that you

Should look out for when you’re searching for a place to rent number one the rental listing doesn’t have many or any pictures in the age of camera phones it’s easy for anyone even the smallest of landlords to take multiple pictures of the property and upload them along with the listing details no reasonable landlord would expect good tenants to be interested in

A place that provides you just a text description or only includes one or two shots of the property as a prospective renter you want to see the pictures of all of the main areas of the property when you’re hunting for a place to live that includes at least one picture each for the living area the kitchen all the bathrooms and bedrooms this will make it easier to

Weed out places that don’t fit your needs long before you put in the time to schedule a walkthrough to see the property in person if the listing doesn’t include enough pictures to get an idea of what the property currently looks like that’s a possible warning sign that the property has fallen into disrepair or that there are unattractive parts of the property that

The landlord or listing agent is trying to hide from you and if there seems to be a major disconnect between the pictures and the description be cautious there could be major issues with the property’s condition or it could even be a scam number 2 the landlord doesn’t offer to schedule a viewing once you’ve decided that you’re interested in a property contacting

The landlord or listing agent to ask additional questions and schedule a viewing of the property should be your next step but if the person in charge of finding renters box at setting up a viewing in a reasonable time frame or tries to get you to sign for the place or wire a deposit seeing it first that’s a huge red flag for a potential rental scam or a disaster

Of a living situation or discrimination signing a lease is a financial decision you shouldn’t take lightly and aboveboard landlords want happy tenants who don’t feel like they’ve been tricked into settling for something that doesn’t meet their needs good landlords should be eager to set up a viewing with potential tenants in order to get their property rented out

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Quickly an apartment or house that sits vacant just cost the money instead of earning it so it’s in the landlord’s best interest to have people over to view the property as soon as the place is ready for new tenants number three the landlord rushes through the viewing once you actually get to see the property the landlord should give you enough time to actually

Check it out not just speed walk you in and out of the door i’m not saying that you need to scrutinize everything down to the baseboards but you’ll probably want to check that all the doors open and close properly and that the cupboards and drawers work that the water pressure is adequate from all the faucets that the windows don’t stick and so on after all you

Are signing a contract for your living space all of this will give you a good idea of how well your landlord takes care of the property it’s true that a landlord or a property manager who tries to rush you through an apartment might just be busy and have a lot of prospective tenants but they might also be hoping that you’ll miss potential problems if they go fast

Enough are they trying to show you the door because the property is too close to a noisy train line that comes by every half hour or because the neighbors howling basset hound is due for his afternoon serenade are the walls between the units extra thin make sure that you have enough time to get a feel for the place you’re interested in renting and that the person

Showing you the property is able to answer any questions that occur to you when you’re on site number four the grounds or common areas are a mess another important red flag to be on the alert for is the upkeep of the grounds and common areas it can be easier to disguise the quality of an average apartment in a complex if you’re shown the model apartment but it’s

Much harder to hide the quality of the grounds and common areas on short notice before or after you look at the inside of a property make sure to scout off the rest of it do the machines in the laundry room all work is the fencing or playground equipment rusty is there garbage piled up anywhere are the grounds well-maintained and free of potential hazards also if

You live in a climate with snow make sure you learn about their snow removal policies the grounds and common areas can be an indication of how responsive the property management is to problems the owners financial ability to handle unforeseen issues and the general state of the neighborhood as a renter you want to be on the lookout for any signs that things aren’t

Being taken care of over the long run number five the landlord is slow to respond or can’t answer questions the last thing you want when you’re renting is to be unable to get a hold of your landlord or property manager in a timely manner when something’s gone wrong your rental search is a great time to find out just how responsive potential landlords will be do

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They answer the phones during business hours if you have to leave a message do they call back that same day or the next how long does it take them to reply to an email an experienced landlord or property manager should also be able to answer typical renters questions promptly they should know which utility companies you’ll need to contact to set up electricity and

Gas how much those utilities average per month and what school district the property is in and so on they should be able to tell you what to do and who to call when there’s water pouring through your ceiling or your heat or ac dies outside of office hours you want to rent from someone who’s well organized and knowledgeable about the property in order to minimize

Frustration on all sides number six the landlord doesn’t require a lease if you take nothing else away from this video keep this in mind do not rent a property without signing a lease i’ll give you some things to watch out for in the lease in a moment but please remember that alleys can provide legal protection for you against potentially unscrupulous landlords

Without a signed and dated lease you’re far more vulnerable to things like being kicked out on short notice or even predatory rent hikes a good landlord should want you to sign a lease so that you both have firm established boundaries for this financial relationship you should want to know exactly how much you’ll be paying for rent how long you can count on having

Possession of the property how much notice you have to give if you want to leave at the end of the term and what your responsibilities are to each other which brings us to the next red flag that you should be on the lookout for number seven the lease has vague terms or blank spaces if something isn’t on the lease when you sign it can be changed if there are blank

Spaces things can be added in later if the language is vague the meaning is up for interpretation you need to read the lease carefully and make sure that everyone is on the same page about the terms of renting the property if the landlord promised you a discount or a deal of some kind for signing double check that that’s reflected in the paperwork insist that

It be added if it isn’t there so that you have proof about what was promised in case of a dispute down the road other things you’ll want to spell out in the lease is how the landlord will calculate the fee for breaking the lease if you have to move early how long your rent grace period is who’s responsible for which utilities what the rules are for subletting

What the pet restrictions are and so on just talking about the details isn’t good enough if there’s potential for a significant impact on your finances or quality of life make sure that those topics are detailed in the lease to your satisfaction number 8 there are non-standard terms on the lease there are a number of things that you should expect to find in an

Average lease like what will happen to your security deposit what kind of notice the landlord is required to give you before accessing the property and an explanation of late fees what you want to be on the lookout for is non-standard versions of these items it’s pretty normal for at least to say that a security deposit will be used for damages or cleaning fees


Often a breakdown of how much the replacement parts will call us will be built into the lease but what does it mean if the lease says a security deposit will be used for maintaining the integrity of the apartment it’s one thing to lose your deposit because your pet rabbit chewed up the baseboards and it’s another for your landlord to decide that you can foot the

Bill because the ancient dishwasher finally died when you were a tenant likewise a landlord should be required to give you reasonable notice before entering the property typically a day or more unless there’s some kind of emergency be wary of leases that say that a landlord can show up at any time without proper notice you should also note what kind of fees the

Landlord will be charging if you end up having to pay rent a day later to a fee as high as 5% is pretty standard depending on the market in your state but anything above that should be scrutinized closely and maybe take a moment to consult your state’s rental laws finding a place to rent is a major financial decision for anyone it’s much easier to walk away from

An iffy situation than it is to get yourself out of the middle one especially if legal paperwork is involved it’s in your best interest to keep an eye out for potential problems whether you’re renting from a giant apartment complex or a smaller landlord with a single property i hope my list of red flags helps you weed out potential scammers and dodgy landlords now

That i’ve shared eight red flags every renter should look out for let’s talk about a great place to learn about the world around you special thanks to curiosity stream for sponsoring today’s video if you were told you could get fit with just a few minutes of exercise a week would you believe it that’s the questions researchers were tackling in a recent documentary

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8 Red Flags Every Renter Should Look Out For By The Financial Diet

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