Probably the most personal thing in our possession is our home, whether that be an apartment, a single-family house, or a converted van. This being the case, it is important that we choose wisely when deciding where we want to put our feet up. Apartments are a little different in that there will be multiple dwellings under the same roof. Still, there are things you want to look out for when choosing an apartment you feel safe and secure in.
Location, Location, Location
Whether you are renting an apartment in a city that is unfamiliar to you or renting one in the town you grew up in, you want to make sure that you’re at least somewhat familiar with the area you’re thinking of moving to. If you are a quiet person, you may not want to live in an area with a lot of noisy traffic. On the other hand, the place may be too quiet for you. Some other things to consider:
- Will the apartment be close to your work?
- Are shopping and retail outlets within a reasonable distance?
- Is public transportation within walking distance?
The character of the neighbor is also something you will want to consider. Some people do not mind living in a rougher part of town if it’ll save them a few dollars. If you are ever in the market to purchase commercial real estate, the visual appearance of your neighbors’ homes will be a primary consideration.
The Building Itself
There are several types of apartment buildings. Some contain multiple units in a single building, while others have just a few units in multiple buildings that make up a complex. Regardless, you will want to make sure that the building is structurally sound. Of course, you are not an inspector, but ask the landlord about the building’s history. If the building is older, ask about the integrity of the building.
If a building looks rundown and uncared for on the outside, what are the chances that the inside will be much better? Factors such as energy costs, structural integrity, and even pest control come into play with regard to how well a building is maintained or constructed.
Fit And Finish
How does the apartment look on the inside? Things you will want to look out for are the condition of the appliances. Is the stove in good working order? Does the fridge get cold enough? Is the place clean in general? Has it been well-maintained? Make sure to use all of your senses. What does the place smell like? What do you hear? These things might seem superficial, but it is often the little things that drive us crazy.
Is the size of the apartment right? Envision where your things will go inside the unit. Give the floors and carpets a good inspection. Are there cracks or structural problems with the wall? What about the electrical outlets? And do not be afraid to check things out like the water pressure. Yes, be picky. You are the one who will be living there.
Smoking Vs. Nonsmoking
Whether or not a building is smoke-free is a big consideration for smokers and nonsmokers alike. If you are a smoker, you want to make sure you have the right to smoke in your own home. If you are not a smoker, you may want to make sure you are not bothered by cigarette smoke.
Ask the landlord whether or not the building is smoke-free. If it is, this should be clearly stated in your lease.
Visit The Area At Night
You may have visited a prospective apartment during the day and thought the area was nice enough. Go back and visit at night, if possible. You would be surprised how some areas change from day to night. Some neighborhoods that seem fairly tame during the day take on a completely different character at night as bars and clubs open for business. Visiting at night might also give you the opportunity to check out your neighbors.
Choosing an apartment that you feel safe and secure in is vital if you want the place to feel like home. This includes checking for things such as the character of the neighborhood, the condition of the building, and any special rules of the building. It is important to know just what you’re getting into before signing the lease. Do these things, and you’ll be sure to find a place where you can lay your head in peace.