Renting An Apartment – What Should Matter?

Accommodation is a need that will never be satisfied and hence more and more rental properties keep coming up. Properties for rent are not only residential but they could also be commercial to serve your business needs. If what you have are residential needs, then you have so many property options to choose from depending on where you are located. Flats and apartments are the most common property types today and you will definitely end up in the best when you know what to look out for before renting your unit. Because your apartment will be your home for some time, you need to make all important considerations to get the best.

Location – Is the location of the property convenient to you? Is it close to where you work or will you have to embark on a journey every morning and how convenient is that to you? When thinking location you should also think about access to facilities and services that are essential. The unit you select should offer you the kind of views you are comfortable with so be sure to check out the available units in relation to what you find most ideal.

Atmosphere – This means the surroundings in and out of the property. If you love some quiet, then you will want a calm and quiet atmosphere and this can be hard to enjoy if you end up in a community that has a reputation for parties. You should also consider what types of residents are accommodated. For instance, a property that houses largely students cannot be compared with one that houses mostly professionals or families. The point should be to select an atmosphere that suits your personality perfectly as well as your study or work habits.

Amenities – What is provided for in the property? This is not only important to consider in your rental unit, but also the common areas that are available on the property. The internet seems to be among the most important aspects for many people so if this matters to you then make sure that the property makes it available for you. Sports ground, swimming pools and entertainment areas are some of the other things you can consider before renting a property on a rental property.

Safety – Apart from thinking about the safety concerns in the area, check to see that reliable locking systems are provided for on windows and doors. Smoke detectors, exit points and other measures should also be in place so you have a sense of security at all times. A good property should also have perimeter wall and some sort of security arrangements at the gate to give residents peace even at night.

Building basics – When you rent an apartment, you want to enjoy maximum privacy when you are in. This makes it important to consider whether the floors, ceilings and even the walls come with any insulation to keep noise out. Because of how apartments are built, without proper insulation you will end up putting up with noises from above, below and outside and this can be distracting for some. Ensure also that doors and windows are tightly sealed to keep off climatic elements.

Real Estate Tips That Will Prove To Be The Confidence In Every Decision You Make

Real estate tips are useful when you are exploring the many different opportunities in the real estate industry. Tips are good for both buying your first home and or becoming an investor within the rental industry. In order to make the best investment you’ll need to align yourself with the appropriate information to help qualify the choices you make.

There are so many different areas within the real estate market where one can find their niche and financial success. In order to accomplish this you must first get clear about where your passion lies as this will allow you to align yourself with the right sources. Finding a mentor or professional who is living the experience you want to acquire for yourself is a smart business move.

Finding an agent that makes you feel like they have your best interest at the forefront of their mind is a requirement for the success of the process. You can measure their level of dedication by how well they listen to your needs; and how that translates into the properties they want you to view.

A strong real estate professional will not only have an interest in the type of home you are looking for; but they will also inquire about the environment you want. This is a very big deal and no portion of it should be taken lightly as it will serve as the foundation on which you will live your life. Take your time is making a hasty and compromising decision could lead to unfavorable circumstances.

The same guidelines holds true for anyone interested in the investment aspect of the real estate industry as someone who is looking to purchase a home to live in. It is vital that you put yourself in your potential renter’s shoes and ask yourself if you would want to rent the property. You want to challenge yourself to purchase properties that are appropriate for the market you intend to serve.

Being an investor will also call for you to consider how you want to manage the properties you’ve acquired. There are a number of reputable property management companies that can help you both screen and maintain the grounds on a monthly basis for a small fee. Once again it is important to assess your level of commitment to the process and to only take on the responsibility for aspects of it you will follow through on.

Having a system where you are able to screen your candidates is vital. A potential renters credit history alongside their rental patterns will help you choose responsible people. While this may be a headache for you to take on under your own there are professional services that can streamline the process for you.

Real estate tips are a great resource when they speak to the aspect of the industry you are interested in. They can help you both avoid making costly mistakes and find the level of confidence you require to make the right choices. Getting the best information can be easily attained by aligning yourself with like minded people.

Eight Tips for Negotiating an Office Lease Renewal

So I’m meeting with our landlord tomorrow to discuss a lease extension, and I’m in the process of pulling together my thoughts on the renewal.

Our office building is owned by a small group of investors, so we have a personal relationship with the owners/landlord. I consulted with several colleagues of mine, and here are our top considerations for effectively negotiating a lease or extension:

1. Be a good tenant

It’s so basic to sound business practices, but it bears repeating, particularly when you’re dealing with individuals and other small business owners. Resolve issues along the way as amicably as possible -it all comes back to you in the end.

2. Start early and understand your options

Particularly in a very tight commercial real estate market, you’ve got to allow at least 9-12 months for the process to play out. It can take several months to research your alternatives, open up negotiations with prospective landlords (especially concerning tenant improvements), and then come back to your current landlord. And you’ll want to allow 2-4 months if you have to plan a move (assuming you’re an SMBE like us).

3. Understand your market, and particularly concessions that new tenants can extract.

While market rental rates are important to understand, there are a number of other considerations new tenants may enjoy, including tenant improvements, rent holidays, and other benefits.

Understanding these will not only give you a sense for what you might expect if you go elsewhere, but it can also help you negotiate your current renewal. Why shouldn’t you enjoy at least part of those benefits on the renewal?

4. Consult with (if not retain) a broker.

I’m a big believer in at least talking to experts in a field, and I generally recommend using them to represent you in a lease negotiation. Depending on the size of your business, this can represent anywhere from a $350k to a multi-million obligation over a 3-5 year period.

Brokers can give you a sense for the market, current conditions, and offer other valuable input. Face it -while you may know your business better than anyone, you’re probably not an expert in commercial real estate.

If you are going to use a commercial real estate broker, I suggest using a tenant only representative, as they are less likely to be conflicted than brokers who may represent either side.

That being said, they are a lot like realtors in that they only get paid when a deal gets done. The good news is they are frequently paid for by the lessor, but that may affect the terms of the deal.

5. Depending on how much leverage you have, work to ‘share the savings’.

Just as you may want to avoid the headaches and costs associated with moving, your landlord may have the same interest. If you’ve been a good tenant and are paying near market rents, the last thing your landlord wants to deal with is several months of vacancy, showing the space, negotiating and paying tenant improvements, and then having to deal with an unknown. So work to value how much benefit each side is getting out of the renewal and see if you can’t find some common ground.

6. Think outside the box and understand your landlord’s situation.

Your landlord is interested in three things – the underlying value of the property, current income/cash flow from the property, and avoiding headaches. Understanding the relative importance of each can be very helpful in your negotiations.

For example, commercial property is essentially valued at a multiple of cash flow (it’s a cap rate if you want to be specific) over a period of time, with an emphasis on future cash flows. If the landlord is thinking about re-financing or selling the property in 2-3 years, she will want to boost the cash flow in that later period. This can provide you with a path to reducing your near term rental outlays in return for increasing the rent at a time when it particularly matters to the landlord.

7. Put together a spreadsheet balancing overall costs for your various rental options

Feel free to let your landlord know you’re doing this, and make sure that you’re getting all the information you need to make a balanced and informed decision.

8. Get your hands on a bunch of actual lease agreements and extensions.

This can help give you ideas for different terms that you might want to incorporate into the lease that you may not have thought of. Of course, if you have representation, you should encourage them to do this -you’d be surprised how often this is overlooked.

There are lots of resources out there for looking at sample and (even more helpful) actual, negotiated lease agreements

Characteristics of a Residential Rental Agreement

If you are renting property for the first time, you may need a residential rental agreement but be uncertain as to what needs to go into it, or how to go about finding the right contract for your needs. There is no one single rental contract; these contracts are about as unique as the properties they are connected to. It is easy to fall into the trap of just using any contract, since they have many common elements but this can be a big mistake that you will pay for dearly later.

It is crucial that you spend some time reading the contract that you are going to use, or even better read several of them before you choose one. It is also crucial that you check with your state laws, there are many states that require some things to be listed in this contract and you do not take the time to do that you could not only be violating the laws of your state, you could be putting yourself in a bad position should there be any disputes later.

All rental agreements start with the same basic information, this information will include the contact information for both parties, as well as all the pertinent information about the actual rental including its location, how much it is being rented for and when rent is due. Any applicable deposits will also be listed here, as well as the length of the term of lease, usually one year.

Each rental contract is drawn up differently but there will be two other sections beside the general information section. One section will deal with the terms and conditions of the rental and the other with the rights and responsibilities of both the tenant and the landlord. The terms and conditions is the place where you will put any of your own stipulations about the rental. This can range from anything such as whether pets are allowed to whether the tenant has access to all the property or even things such as painting or repairing the home.

In the section about rights and responsibilities this is where things such as your right of access and the notice you must give are listed. This is also where you will find sections on terminating the lease and about any damage that is done to the property. There is also a section that covers your tenants’ rights as well.

Your residential rental agreement is a legally binding contract that is designed to spell out the details of the contract as well as provide protections for both tenant and landlord, it is essential that you make sure that the contract is drawn up correctly to ensure that it is admissible in a court of law and will not bring grief back on you another day.

Eight Tips to Consider When Looking at Apartments for Rent

Finding apartments for rent can be a stressful task. However, there are several tips that can alleviate the annoyances and make the search for a new place fun.

Be Specific

When apartment hunting, make sure to determine which features are a must-have and where it’s okay to compromise. If there’s a perfect two bedroom in a great location, but it lacks the perfect yard, it may be time to adjust priorities. Decide what is necessary and stick to it, but try to remain realistic.

Find Out the Included Utilities

This is another major must-do when looking for a new place. Many rentals include some utilities, but there are hidden costs to look out for such as trash or water costs. If not included, these costs can add up quickly. As well, there may be additional charges for parking or a security system.

Ask Around

This may seem obvious, but asking friends of the family for landlord referrals is helpful. If anything, it’ll help weed out the inattentive and neglectful landlords. Who knows, a friend may even know someone who has apartments for rent.

Take Measurements

Depending on what furniture one currently has, this may be an important part of house hunting. Making sure the bed fits in a smaller bedroom or being able to comfortably walk around seating in the living room is essential to a cozy environment.

Avoid Scams

We all know of popular classified sites that offer rental deals, but if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Make sure the listing includes photos and a local phone number. Also, be sure to check the average rent prices in the area; if the price seems like too good of a deal, it likely is. There may also be a catch to a cheaper place, like bad parking or poor renovations.

Check the Pet Policy

If a pet is important, double check the lease for costs such as a pet deposit. Also, there may be weight, number, and breed restrictions to consider. Some listings may not mention a pet policy, but it’s worth asking. Some landlords allow pets on a case-by-case basis.

Bring a Friend

Always have someone tag along when looking for apartments to rent. It always pays to have an extra opinion, and they may be able to point out things that wouldn’t always be noticed on a solo look. It’ll also be convenient to have one person ask questions while the other takes photos and measurements.

Make a List

This may not be common, but it’s a great idea to make a list of questions to ask when hunting for apartments to rent. Getting caught up in the excitement of the search can make one forget about asking about things such as the average electric bill cost or if the washer and dryer are included. Having a list makes a person prepared, but it also makes them appear responsible to the potential new landlord.

Keeping this advice in mind, one can be sure to find a great new place to make a wonderful home.