Relocating to a new city is never an easy job. But once you have shifted base, finding a home in the new city becomes your priority. In most of the cases, it is fraught with risk because you are not familiar with the city landscape and the people often mislead you for profit. It is, therefore, wise to get in touch with credible property agents from a leading real estate portal like Monest who offer the right advice and show you the best properties available for rent. Besides, you need to bear in mind some important points while choosing a rental property.
Some people want to save commission so they avoid hiring an agent for the job. You should ask yourself whether you need a real estate agent to help you in finding an apartment. When you realize there are several benefits of having an agent negotiate on your behalf in a new city, you should choose a top-rated agent from the best agent network to meet your real estate needs.
Even if you have an agent, there are some key points that require your attention and involvement. You should check these details yourself because you should be fully aware of what you are settling for in order to avoid regrets later.
1. Physical Inspection of a Rental Property
It is always advisable to go and physically check the condition of the flat. Meet the flat owner and see the exact location and direction – whether it is road facing or park facing. Cross check furniture fixtures, plumbing, and sanitary fittings. Demand changes before moving in – to avoid confusion later.
2. Maintenance charges for a Rental Property
Find out the annual or monthly maintenance charges payable. It is a major issue between the tenant and the landlord so it is better to be well-informed about the conditions before renting the flat. Regular maintenance jobs like water taps and electricity boards are manageable but outdoor damage repair and painting involve high costs and these often become issues of conflict between the parties. You should know what you are expected to get done to avoid unpleasant situations.
3. Brokerage commission for a Rental Property
Include brokerage in your total rental outflow because the broker usually takes one month rent as his commission. This also varies from city to city. Opt for an organized broker who sticks to the agreed terms and minimises hassles while searching for a rental property.
4. Facilities inside a Rental Property
Find out the unpaid and paid services in the apartment complex. As a tenant, you should be aware of whether you are supposed to pay for club usage, gymnasium, swimming pool, and bear car parking charges. If you do not have clarity on these points, be ready to shell out extra.
5. Lock-in period for a Rental Property
The minimum duration period should be clear in advance – whether it is six months or one year. Adjust advance security deposit and electric bill payment accordingly. The lease agreement should mention rent hike percentage which occurs after the expiry of the initial contract. At the end of eleven months, it is generally pegged at 5 percent per year in case of residential properties although some premium residencies make it 10 percent.
6. Flat documents for a Rental Property
You should know that the property you are renting is free of fraud. The relationship between the agent and the landlord should be professional. It should not appear that they are partners in fleecing you. Also, make it a point to acquire basic know-how about the last tenant who lived here. Many families have objections when they get to know about suicide cases in flats or any criminal activity reported from the premises. Neighbours are a good source of such information – an agent may conceal certain facts. Undertake the job of excavating the past for your own peace of mind.
7. Security steps before choosing a Rental Property
The crime rate is high in urban areas and, in most of the incidents reported the involvement of insiders is established. Crimes against women and elderly people are reported from posh flats. You should know whether the security staff is provided by a reputed agency. Find out the 24×7 security arrangements inside the society. Check whether technologically advanced security systems are installed to track suspicious movement and contact residents during emergencies. Also, note the firefighting measures available in the complex. In case of a sudden outbreak, find out if there are proper evacuation facilities. After all, it is a question of safety of your family, and you need to know about proper safeguards which an agent is not concerned about.
8. Advance rent for a Rental Property
Some landlords throw unpleasant surprises by raising unreasonable demands. They have the habit of blaming the agent for not disclosing the details to you. Instead of wasting time in this blame game, you should find out the demands – whether the landlord needs advance rent of one month or three months, whether he needs additional security deposit in order to recover damages to the property. In case of furnished flats, landlords want to keep security deposit and it is interest-free. So be informed about these conditions to avoid face-off.
The bottom-line is that even if you hire an agent to find out the best property option for you, there is actually quite a lot of work you need to do while acquiring a flat on rent in a new city. Remember you are here because of the job, and you do not need a landlord who visits your office every month or disturbs you even if the rent is paid on time. Make sure you clarify when the landlord can come for visit to contact you and how often. Do not allow him the scope to assert his feudal control over the asset rented out by disturbing you or your family just because he owns the flat. He cannot show up at odd hours without prior intimation. All these aspects affect you so it is important for you to pay attention to these nitty-gritties.