1. How long has the landlord owned this property?
It is important to ask how long the landlord has owned the rental property in order to get better insight on their experience and track record. You can also ask for references from previous tenants to get more information about their experiences with the landlord. This will help you determine if they are a reputable and reliable landlord.
2. What is included in the rent (utilities, furniture, etc.)?
Be sure to ask what utilities are included in the rent and if there are any additional charges for things like water, electricity or cable/internet fees. Also find out if any furniture or appliances are included with the property as this could save you money right away.
3. Is there a security deposit and pet deposits required?
Security deposits help protect a landlord from damages tenants may cause while renting their property. Be sure to understand how much is required upfront and when it can be refunded after moving out of the rental unit. Additionally, inquire about any pet deposits that may be necessary if you have an animal.
4. Are there any restrictions on pets or smoking?
It is important to know right away if the landlord has any restrictions in place for owning pets or smoking inside of their rental unit. This will help you decide if this is a good fit for you and your family.
5. Who is responsible for lawn maintenance/snow removal?
Most landlords are responsible for maintaining the yard, but some may require tenants to take care of it themselves, so be sure to get clarification on who would be held accountable for these tasks before signing the lease agreement. In addition, ask about who is responsible for snow removal during the winter months so that you can plan accordingly and make sure all areas of the property are safe.
6. Is there off-street parking available for vehicles/guests?
If you have a vehicle or plan to have visitors, make sure to ask the landlord if there is any off-street parking available with their rental unit. This will help ensure that you and your guests always have a place to park when visiting or staying at the property.
7. When are late fees charged and how much are they?
Be sure to ask about the policy on late rent payments, as this could lead to extra costs each month if not paid in full and on time according to the lease agreement. Inquire about when late fees are charged and how much they are in order to budget appropriately each month.
8. Can you sublet the rental unit or have roommates if needed?
Subletting and having roommates are common for renters, so it is important to make sure that these options are included in the lease agreement. Clarify the rules with your landlord beforehand so there won’t be any surprises if you decide to take this route.
9. How often does the landlord plan to increase rent payments?
Rent increases can be a huge surprise, so make sure to ask how often the landlord plans on increasing rent payments. This will help you prepare financially in case of an unexpected increase as well as give you an idea of how much your rent could potentially go up over time while living at the property.
10. Does the tenant need to pay for repairs or will the owner handle it?
Find out if the tenant or the owner is responsible for repairs and maintenance of the rental unit. This is important to know, as it could become costly if you’re expected to take care of any issues with the property without help from your landlord. Having this information upfront can help avoid future disputes.