Make a Checklist Before Renting an Apartment

There are many things to consider when renting an apartment. Here are some tips for tenants:

Create two lists before you step foot into a potential apartment

Before stepping foot into a potential apartment, it’s important to make two lists: one of your must-haves and a nice-to-have list. This is particularly important when considering new-build apartments, which usually have more problems than they’re worth. Likewise, a space with red flags or a long waitlist for a vacant unit isn’t worth the time and money.

Tenant safety

Before you hand over the keys to a new tenant, it’s a good idea to conduct a thorough walk-through. Note down what needs to be fixed and repaired. Compare this to the condition of the unit when you moved in. Then, determine how much maintenance will cost. Deduct the cost of repairs from the security deposit, and return the balance to the tenant. While there are many ways to check the apartments for rent, the checklist above is an excellent place to start.


While checking the house or apartment you are renting, make sure to check for fire extinguishers, radon detectors, and carbon monoxide detectors. Make sure all lights in the house are working, including recessed lighting and light fixtures. Replace any burned-out bulbs. You should also check the temperature reading on the thermostat to make sure it is consistent throughout the home or apartment. If you notice any problems with the thermostat, contact the property manager to fix the problem.


A smart budget can help you to decide what your budget should be before renting an apartment. Rent is not cheap, so you’ll need to consider your monthly expenses in addition to the down payment. But budgeting is not rocket science. It takes some planning and dedication to keep your monthly expenses in check. There are certain things you can limit to make your apartment search easier. Here are some tips:

Fire alarms

One of the most important things to check before renting an apartment is fire alarms. Most fires start in the kitchen, so it is vital to check the alarms for proper functioning. If they are not working, landlords should replace them, but they should be upfront about the length of time it will take them to get fixed. Fire safety is a top priority, and smoke alarms are the only way for occupants to get help in case of a fire.

Peeling paint

Whether you want to rent an apartment with peeling paint or not, you must check the state of the paint. It is your responsibility to repair any damage you find, but some landlords will not agree to fix any damage if you do it yourself. Some leases even prevent tenants from repairing the paint if it is damaged. In such cases, you should get a quote from a licensed paint contractor and send it to the tenant.

Water leaks

A checklist is a great way to check for water leaks before renting an apartment. When moving into a new apartment, you should check for water leaks in the bathroom, around the toilet and sink, and under the sink. If you are renting a kitchen, you should check the faucets and garbage disposal for working water. The kitchen sink should also drain well, and the garbage disposal should work if applicable.

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