Rentals.com Company Blog

Rental's Tips, Renter's Corner

By Amber

It’s not always easy to feel sure whether a particular rental property is the right one for you. The distractions of a new place — especially if it has cosmetic appeal — may cloud other questions that need to be asked.

To help you hone in on the aspects of a rental home that you should really pay attention to, we offer five questions to clear your head and maybe make the right choice more apparent.

Is this the right location for me?
There’s a reason why location ranks as one of the most important aspects of a property’s desirability. We’ve all looked at rentals that seemed so great we thought it would be okay to overlook an aspect of the location that wasn’t what we really wanted – a longer distance from work, school or friends, or traffic noise, for instance. Before you sign a lease, think hard about where your prospective home is located in relation to the places, activities and people that mean so much to you. Also consider if there are aspects of the setting that might eventually feel like a deal breaker after some time has passed; think of issues like difficult parking.

How is cell reception?
This question may seem unimportant initially. After all, with a mobile phone, you aren’t bound to your home to make and receive calls. But consider your at-home phone time: you won’t want to have to walk or drive around the neighborhood to get a good cellular signal! You’ll need to be able to make and receive calls at your rental property, especially if you choose to abandon the landline.

While you’re doing a walk-through of the rental property, try your phone from different parts of the house. If a friend or roommate is with you, have them try, too. If different phones and carriers net you a strong signal, you should be in business.

Is doing laundry convenient?
If the rental property doesn’t have a washer and dryer — or the possibility of you installing your own — ask yourself whether your washing options will be convenient enough to avoid being a colossal chore. Inquire whether there are laundry services available in the area.

How much freedom do I need to customize?
Consider your preferences carefully when it comes to changing up a home’s decor. If the rental’s manager has a “hands-off” policy about painting or putting nail holes in the wall, will it stand in the way of your creative freedom — or be one less thing to worry about when it comes time to move out?

Is this the place I’ll want to come home to every night?
This question is the true test to decide how comfortable you with a prospective rental home. How do you think you will feel when you open the door to your home every night? Will it be a sanctuary? Can you imagine settling in there, or hosting a holiday get-together? Trust your intuition to answer this question for you about your overall comfort with a space.

Choosing where we will live when renting is an important decision. The best way to get clarity and make the right decision is to ask a few important questions, like these.

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