Tips for Adding Curb Appeal to Your Units for Spring

curb appealSpring is here and that means it is time to spruce up the curb appeal of your apartment building. Spring is the peak season for new renters — because everyone wants to secure and move before the heat of the summer. When it comes down to picking an apartment building, it is no secret that renters want something that is attractive to look at. Luckily there are ways to give your curb appeal a lift without spending too much from your budget.

Clean Everything Outside

Your community should be neat and clean. That means picking up any trash items you find, cleaning out the weeds, sweeping and power washing the exteriors and even having the windows washed. There shouldn’t be any pet waste sitting in the lawns and all of the grass needs to be mowed and well-kept. Grass clippings should also be picked up immediately after the lawn is mowed so that they aren’t tracked throughout the community or into main areas.

Take Care of Your Landscaping

The smallest amount of effort in your landscaping goes a long way with future tenants. Make sure trees are trimmed so that they don’t hang on the building or in the walkways. Take care of bushes and shrubs so that they don’t block any signage or entrances. If you have areas of grass that are dead or dying, remove them and replant so that the lawn is even and looks like it is kept up.

Flower beds should be cleaned out too. If it’s the right time for planting in your area, lay down a layer of fresh mulch and get planting. Go for eye-catching flower shades like yellow, pink and orange.

Give the Exterior a Fresh Face

Sometimes all it takes is a power washing to get the exterior of your building clean and looking as good as new. But, if you notice there are areas where the paint is peeling, consider getting in there, sanding and repainting the surface. Also, power washing might help remove the peeling paint so that it is easier to cover.

Spruce Up the Inside Too

Your leasing office and any other interior community areas need a good uplift too. Clean the areas thoroughly, repaint walls and add pops of color, and make sure your community areas give off the right impression. These are the areas potential renters are going to see first; therefore, they need to really shine.

The outside of your apartment complex and the main community areas are your first impression to potential renters. By taking the time to get it all done before peak rental season, you’re already a step ahead of the competition.

Apr 2014

How to Ensure You Get Your Security Deposit Back

Coin Bank And HouseYour security deposit is required at the time you sign your lease. Sometimes it is the first and last month’s rent, other times your property owner requires a set fee for theapartment. The purpose of the security deposit is simple: it ensures the apartment is saved for you, and helps protect the property owner from any damages or skips you might perform. But, regardless of how good of a tenant you are, if you aren’t careful, you could not get your security deposit back or get only a small amount back.

Everything from damage from your furry friends to not cleaning your apartment properly at the end of your lease could prevent you from getting your security deposit back. But, how often does a property owner really hold a person’s security deposit? You might be surprised.

In a recent study, 25 percent of all apartment renters didn’t get their security deposit back and 36 percent of those renters never even were told why by the manager. So, if you are renting, it’s important to find out the rules regarding your security deposit and how you can ensure you get it back at the end of your lease.

Get Permission for Everything You Do

You should get written permission for everything you do in your apartment. That means changing the wall color, hanging pictures, etc. That way if the property owner withholds your security deposit, you have documented proof that you were given permission to do so.

Review Your Lease Thoroughly

There are usually guidelines in your lease that tell you how to handle your security deposit and how the landlord will handle it. You should have a list of conditions that could prevent you from getting your deposit back in your rental agreement. If you don’t see them, don’t sign it. Ask the landlord to specify the terms of the deposit in your agreement, including any conditions that prevent you from getting it all or some of it back, and then sign the lease.

Take Photos

Before you leave the apartment, have it cleaned and then take photographs of each room. Compare these photos to those you take when you first rent the apartment. Make sure they have a date and time stamp. That way if the property owner says there is damage, you have photographic proof that the damage was there before you rented the unit.

Discuss It With Your Landlord

At the end of the lease, if your landlord refuses to give you your security deposit, talk to them. Sometimes just having a discussion as to why and what you can do may help you get at least some of it back.

Apr 2014