The Landlord Interview

Your appointment with your potential landlord or manager is your chance to ask your questions about the apartment. This list of questions should help you with your apartment search.

Availability of the Apartment:

  • When is the apartment available?
  • Is the apartment currently occupied?
  • When can I move in?

Deposit and Lease Terms Questions:

  • What is the apartment’s monthly rent?
  • What deposit will I be required to leave?
  • When is the rent due?
  • What are the penalties for late payment?
  • What are the terms for renewing the lease?
  • If my housing needs change, can I move to another available unit in the community?
  • Can I sublet the apartment?
  • Can I have roommates?

Utilities and Public Services Questions:

  • Are any utilities included in the apartment’s rent?
  • Which utilities am I responsible for?
  • Do you have a list of utility companies for activation of services?
  • Any maintenance I will be reponsible for (plumbing, elec, gas, etc)?
  • Is there parking in the building? Is it included in the price of the apartment?
  • Is there assigned parking? How many parking spaces will I be assigned?
  • Where can guests park?
  • Are pets allowed? What kind of pets?
  • Is there a pet deposit? Is it refundable?
  • What limitations are there on my pets?
  • Are laundry facilities available on the premises?
  • Recreation facilities? Gardens? Club memberships? Are there any extra charges for use of the recreation facilites?
  • How is trash removal handled?
  • What kind of security is there?
  • What are the community rules regarding quiet hours? Parties? Overnight guests?
  • What are the move-in/move-out procedures?
  • Do I need to reserve the elevators for move-in/move-out?
  • How are deliveries handled?

General Questions:

  • Is there an on-site office?
  • Is there a 24-hour number for maintenance emergencies?
  • How fast do you respond to maintenance problems?
  • What modifications am I allowed to make to the apartment (painting, wall papering, installing shelves, etc.)?
  • What’s the tenant mix like? Can I speak with current tenants in the community?

The best ways to win over a prospective landlord is for you to be prepared with your information.

  • Having a copy of your credit report in hand will earn brownie points, although most landloards will prefer to run a fresh credit report directly faxed to them.
  • Be prepared with references from previous landlords, possibly have a recommendation letter from a previous landlord and employer. This will prove to the new landlord that you aren’t just full of hot-air that you really are as great a tenant as you seem to be.
  • Be prepared to have a check or have the cash ready for the initial deposit.
  • Dress to impress. (Note: This does not mean you need to dress in a designer suit, buy reading glasses and speak with a British accent.)
Oct 2011

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