Questions to Ask Your Landlord Before You Move In

Your landlord can be quite an intimidating presence, and they can either provide a pleasant living experience or make your life a living hell. However, they are still human (most of the time), so there are plenty of things that could probably be smoothed over will a little good communication. In fact, here is a list of questions you should never be afraid of asking:

1.) Can I pay less rent? Rents are not typically negotiable, but other things often are. If your landlord isn’t willing to lower your monthly rent, ask about other things. Many times they legally can’t lower your rent (that’s set by different housing laws) but they are able to waive additional expenses. If you have a pet ask about forgoing the pet charges, or if you have an upfront parking space but ride the bus, offer to give up your parking space to have one of your utilities covered.

2.) Are there any health concerns? This should cover everything from lead-based paint to asbestos to mold. In a perfect world your apartment would have none of these concerns, but old apartments have old apartment problems, so you’ll want to cover your bases. And even if they say everything is golden, you’ll want to get an inspection notice confirming everything is, in fact, golden.

3.) Why did the last tenants move out? If they were arrested and evicted for drug issues, you’re going to have countless strangers stopping by in the first few months unaware that their dealer is in the slammer. Plus, not only will it give you a general idea of what condition the apartment might really be in, but it will give you an idea of what your landlord is like. If they were evicted for one noise complaint, you might want to move on to the next place.

4.) Can I make improvements? Landlords are extremely busy, with many of them often managing a number of residences. If you want to make some improvements, like repaint the god awful bathroom or start a garden in the backyard, ask! Many landlords will cover the cost of the supplies and might even give you a discount on your rent that month if you are improving the place.

5.) Do all the appliances work? And by work, we mean properly functions in the highest possible way. There are little things more frustrating than an appliance that just barely works, and you don’t want to find out sometime next week that your refrigerator only really works part of the time or that the heater works but only up to 62 degrees. Ask your landlord about all the cooking appliances, the dishwasher and garbage disposal (if there is one), the heating and cooling systems and the water pressure.

And don’t forget; for dorm safety items (like pepper spraysafes and personal alarms), check out our store at www.secureoncampus.com, and for dorm decorations (like dorm lightingfun drinking games, and wall decals) check out our store at www.thegoodlifeoncampus.com!

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