Things to Look For When Touring a New Apartment

It’s always fun looking for a new place to live. You get to search out beautiful new places, and let your imagination run wild as you picture yourself by the apartment’s brand new pool. Before you sign any papers, there are a few things that you need to take note of. There are so many things that go into making the big decision to move. Don’t only base your decision on the new countertops and spacious bathrooms. Think about the practicalities of safety, money, and the perks you’ll get to enjoy.

  1. Safety:
    • Security systems: Apartments are a community. There is safety and danger in numbers. It’s important to look after you and your family first. Take note of how the interior security system is set up. Is there an automatic lock to the main entrance? How is each apartment secured? Do they use a keypad with a code, or do you need a specific key to enter? Does each apartment come with an alarm system or do you need to install that on your own?
    • Smoke detectors: Look for smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors, and other safety alarms. They should be in the hallways as well as in the apartment rooms. Look for sprinklers and ask about fire escape routes.
    • Parking lots: Are the parking lots well lit? Look for broken glass and debris laying around. Broken glass can indicate a recent break-in. If there is debris and trash lying around it can tell you about who your neighbors will be. If people care for something insignificant like a parking lot, then they will care about the big things in the apartment complex.
  2. Fees:
    • Pet fees: There are usually extra fees that aren’t listed online when you see the apartment rates. As you’re viewing the apartment, ask about those little extras that can start to add up, so you know if it fits in your budget. Some apartments don’t allow pets at all. Ask if they accommodate pets, and if so, what is the monthly, or yearly pet fee?
    • Parking fees: Depending on the location, parking can be difficult to find. Some apartment complexes offer parking, and others don’t. First ask to see if there is a designated parking area for your building. Then, ask if there are assigned parking spaces, or if it’s on a first come, first serve type basis. There may an extra fee if you want a designated space.
  3. Added Perks
    • Floor space vs. Price: Floor space is one of the most sought after things while looking for an apartment. You want to find the most floor space, for the least amount of money. Do a little number crunching to see if you are getting the best deal for the floor space.
    • Amenities: Most apartments offer a few extras to set them apart from other complexes. The amenities are nice, but it does cost some for the upkeep of them. Most of the time the amenities are built into the rent price, but some apartments let you opts in or out to use the amenities. If you want to use the community pool, ask to see if there is an extra fee for access.

First and foremost, your safety should always come first. Ask hard questions to the staff to get an understanding of how safe the area is, as well as, how much effort they have put into keeping their tenants safe. Second, you don’t want to be surprised by the first month’s rent, so make sure there aren’t extra fees that you hadn’t considered. Last, but not least, enjoy all of those new perks once you’ve settled in to your new home!

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