7 Basic Things That You Should Do Before Moving Out of Your Californian Rental Apartment

shutterstock_301744478For years in a row, you have appreciated the warmth and comfort of your Californian rental property. However, at this point, you feel that the house or apartment that you’re currently renting is no longer a good match for your lifestyle, ambitions and future goals. So what’s next? You choose to find out on your own, by moving out of the apartment that you have been occupying for so long. Life goes on. Goodbyes are always hard, but this doesn’t mean that they should also burn holes in your pockets.

Recover Your Tenancy Deposit in 7 Easy Steps

In this context, your number one goal is to maintain a cordial relationship with your landlord (because we all know that great referrals never hurt, and may actually help you impress other landlords and get the keys to other awesome apartments in the future).

At the same time, you would very much like to get the deposit back, and make the most of a significant amount of cash that you kind of consider “found money.” Both goals are achievable, but they do imply a little bit of work. As you can probably imagine, in order to convince your landlord to give you your tenancy deposit back, you have to prep the property for a thorough inspection. The good news is that you can simplify the entire process by following the seven easy steps described below.

  1. Clean and De-clutter Like a Pro. First of all, start the cleaning process by gathering all your belongings. Now would be a good time to separate the things that you’re planning on using and depositing inside your new apartment, from the ones that you could donate, toss or leave in storage. Make sure all rooms are clean and tidy; and pack your personal belongings and put them in labeled cardboard boxes, to avoid confusion and potential losses before, after or during your big move. Clean the carpets, polish the floors, dust the furniture and do your best to restore the apartment to its original condition, which hopefully you have documented before moving in.
  2. Invest Time and Energy in a Paint Job. A paint job is one of the simplest and most cost-effective improvements that you could invest in with your landlord’s permission. Believe it or not, one coat of fresh paint could bring an entire room back to life, making it seem larger, brighter and tidier at the same time. Opt for professional services ensured by an experienced painter, and you’ll also manage to find a good solution to small cracks, scratches, holes and other marks on your walls.
  3. Erase All the Sings of Your Presence inside the House. While you probably shouldn’t worry about normal signs of wear and tear displayed by the furniture, décor elements and appliances that your rental apartment features, you should try to address minor damages that lower the practical or aesthetic value of the property that you’re still occupying. For instance, now would be the perfect time to take your colorful artwork down and patch those ugly holes that your nails and screws have left on the walls. Use spackling paste and remember to sand every single spot to make it easier for your landlord to repaint the walls and recreate a uniform surface.
  4. Gather All the Keys. To avoid any potential safety risks and cut all ties with your rental property, don’t forget to round-up all the keys, including the spare one that you have decided to give to your friend or neighbor who comes to feed your cat and water the plants every single time you have to go on a trip.
  5. Clean the Fridge and the Oven. Even if you have already managed to vacuum the carpets, dust the furniture and clean the floor, this doesn’t mean that your job is done. Target the less visible corners of your rental apartment and clean and sanitize areas where you often tend to neglect, including your kitchen cabinets, fridge and oven. These areas may still store leftovers and crumbs, which could attract small animals or insects, leading to a potential pest contamination.
  6. Plan the Details of Your Upcoming Walk-Through. If you think that your landlord will just give you your money back without inspecting his apartment, you may be in for a big surprise. In most cases, landlords and property managers will do the exact opposite: they will explore even the most hidden corners, looking for potential signs of damage.

You can prevent misunderstandings and unpleasant surprises by scheduling a walk-through, which will give you the opportunity to show your property manager or landlord that you have already taken care of all the cleaning and small adjustments required before your big move, and make certain that you will get your deposit check as soon as possible.

  1. Look for an Even Better Rental Matching All Your Needs and Budget. At the end of the day, you should strive to leave the rented apartment just as you found it, get your deposit back and carry on with your life. In case you may feel the need to start looking for an even cheaper, more spacious or more comfortable for rent property in the state of California, use the tools and insight offered by Apartment Hunterz to conduct an effective and affordable house hunt.

Why waste any time driving around several neighborhoods and tracking down for rent signs, when you can start a cheaper and more convenient apartment search online? Analyze thousands of listings daily, save and compare all your favorites, contact landlords using the smart iConnect feature, upload and download forms with a few clicks, and schedule in-person meetings to tour and rent one of the most appealing apartments or houses for rent in your price range.

5 Expert Tips on How to Attract the Best Tenants to Your Californian Rental

shutterstock_306279413Given that very few people can actually afford to buy a house or an apartment in California, and more and more families choose to explore the financial advantages, flexibility and reduced level of commitment implied by rental properties, you may be inclined to think that renting out your home is a smart move.

Truth be told, many tenants may be looking for a house like the one that you’re thinking about renting as we speak. But how could they reach you? And, most importantly, why should they choose your rental over the thousands of similar properties that they could tour and compare online, with just a few clicks?

Hope is not exactly your best strategy here. If you want to maintain the competitive edge of your property, you have to promote in an effective manner and make it become truly desirable in the eyes of potential tenants. Don’t know where to start? In this case, keep reading to discover (and hopefully apply) our five expert tips on how to add value to your Californian for rent property, lure more prospects and find the perfect tenant rapidly, without going crazy.

  1. Post Quality Photos and Keyword-Rich Descriptions. Stock photos won’t get you very far when it comes to promoting the house that you wish to rent out. The same goes for blurry, poor-quality photos that don’t do your property any favors. Any expert specialized in real estate photography will highlight the importance of a professional photo shoot pursuing three different goals:
  • Your ambition to make your house look large and comfortable.
  • Your desire to make your home look clean, clutter-free and bright (a focus on your property’s sources of light could help you achieve this goal)
  • Your wish to capture unique pictures with original wow factors (artwork, furniture, accent walls, other decorative elements) that differentiate them from the rest of the real estate photos available out there

Once you’ve managed to select the right set of photos that could help you individualize your listing, start working on the description. Focus on finding the best descriptive words that accentuate the most remarkable features of your property.

For instance, if your property features floor-to-ceiling windows, expensive decorations, a pool, spa or gym, and various other desirable additions, make sure you highlight their presence. In short, it is highly recommended to come up with a good USP (Unique Selling Proposition) in order to impress potential tenants. Go beyond vague descriptions! There are millions of 2-bedroom apartments in California, so what exactly makes your special? For example, advantages like proximity to award-winning restaurants, cool shopping destinations and parks and recent remodeling work are features that can convince any tenant to give your property a second thought; so promote them accordingly.

  1. Invest Cost-Effective Additions or Improvements. Even if you can’t afford to buy new furniture or invest in high-end decorations, set up a small budget for an inexpensive facelift that could boost the appeal of your rental. A paint job, a few potted plants, new curtains and carpets and DIY art are only a few of the most affordable additions that could turn any house or apartment into a brighter, more modern and welcoming place.
  2. Highlight the Features That Usually Attract Tenants. Do you know what makes your potential tenants tick? Usually, the people who are interested in finding a new roof over their head are looking for a combination of key advantages, including prime location, modern amenities, luxurious indoors, cool architecture and low rental rates. As a matter of fact, a white paper published by Rent Media Solutions indicates that 69% of all potential tenants use location as their main selection criterion when it comes to identifying and comparing listings. Clearly, most people are intimidated by long commuting routes and wish to find a rental property that is as close to their office as possible.

While you can’t change the physical location of your building, you can add a few extras to make it more attractive in the eyes of the people who will be touring your property. Internal parking and laundry, balconies, access to green spaces and proximity to sporting complexes, and gas cookers placed inside the kitchen are only a few of the additional features that influence the final decision of thousands of tenants, so try to make your for rent apartment or house seem as friendly, modern and feature-rich as possible to boost your odds of finding a great tenant in no time.

  1. Sweeten the Deal. If you’ve already applied the tips listed below without results, now would be a good time to sweeten the pot. There are several ways in which you could do that. For starters, if you’re not really willing to budge on your asking price, consider offering other incentives, such as one extra parking spot or a free month’s rent.
  2. Count on the Best Californian Apartment Finding Service to Market Your Property. Sometimes, even when you’re ready to negotiate your price and add various complimentary services and features to please potential tenants, you may still have a hard time trying to market your rental in an effective manner. In this case, don’t wait for a miracle to happen, especially if you have bills to pay and your rental apartment is your primary source of income.

Take this matter into your own hands and list your property with Apartment Hunterz. California’s favorite apartment finder will offer you all the tools and expert support that you could ever need to get in touch with tenants, screen candidates, schedule meetings and rent your house or apartment the easy, convenient and safe way. Try this amazing service today and discover a new method to boost the visibility, popularity and profitability of your slices of real estate.


5 Key Steps to Take Before Viewing a Property in California

shutterstock_89766298When it comes to making important, life-changing decisions, we are often advised to trust our gut feeling and listen to what our heart tells us to do. Is this the smartest tactic that you could employ when it comes to viewing properties for rent in California? In all honesty, on the local real estate market, an unexpected case of love at first sight can cause massive headaches and heartaches, leaving you in a dark pit of despair, anger and frustration.

In other words, when you feel ready to start a house hunt, don’t be fooled by appearances. Don’t fall for the first property that you see online, simply because it has ample floor-to-ceiling windows providing plenty of natural light, glossy hardwood floors, perfectly manicured gardens or modern amenities that you have always contemplated in glossy magazines.

  1. Get the Bigger Picture by Doing Research Online. Let’s face it: in most cases, controlling your emotions during a house hunt can be quite difficult, especially when your eyes meet amazing details that your heart has envisioned a long time ago.

Things can get even more complicated when you don’t actually have a plan. When you aren’t familiar with the realities of the local real estate market, you show up unprepared and give landlords the opportunity to sweep you off your feet and put their expertise to good use to make you overspend on rent. On the other hand, when you use the data brought to you by one of the most reliable apartment finders in California, you keep the ball in your court and make the most of expert insight to get a better deal. The lesson is simple: go online and compare properties in your favorite ZIP codes, in terms of features, square footage and price. This will prepare you for a more productive round of negotiations.

  1. Always Establish a First Direct Contact with Landlords before Touring the Property. Unfortunately, the online rental scam problem is as real as it gets. As a story published by FBI points out, more than a few rental ads are phony, and expose potential tenants to considerable security risks and financial losses. This type of scam has ensnared many victims in several states, including Colorado, Illinois and California. The good news is that you can prevent rental scams in several ways. First of all, you could do a background check on your landlord and start looking for reviews published by other users who have occupied or tried to rent the property that you’re planning on renting at some point.

Secondly, you should dismiss candidates who tell you stories that sound odd and raise red flags. Properties with a ridiculously low rental rate are always a warning sign that you should take into consideration; the same goes for landlords who are letting you know that they have to travel to Nigeria, and ask you to wire them two or three months’ worth of rent.

Thirdly, you should get the best support while doing research online. By teaming up with California’s favorite apartment hunter, you could analyze thousands of fresh, attractive, verified listings, and lower the odds of wasting any time and money dealing with potential scammers. You can keep risks in check by starting to build a solider relationship with landlords and property managers before actually meeting them in person. Using the iConnect feature brought to you by Apartment Hunterz, you can reach the people who have chosen to rent out their properties with just a few clicks.

  1. Ask All the Right Questions. Assuming that you have already had a nice conversation with a few landlords and have gathered all the info allowing you to pick favorites, what’s next? After completing this step, you can prepare a list of questions allowing you to discover the particularities of the property that you’re planning on renting. Make sure you ask concise questions related to the:
  • age and overall condition of the building
  • onsite maintenance service
  • storage space
  • rental rates and payment methods
  • existing tenant policies and procedures
  1. Go Beyond Eye-Catchy Additions Used as Bait. Here’s another aspect that you should consider: many landlords use every single trick in the book to make you fall in love with their properties at a first glace. They won’t hesitate to “plant” a series of wow factors, including huge mirrors designed to create the illusion of extra space, delicious smells, expensive decorative items, fresh coats of paint and strategic lighting, to make their homes more appealing. Don’t let these additions fool you and don’t make a final call based solely on appearances. If the aesthetic value of a home outweighs its practical value, you may want to start looking for other options in your price range; after all, beautiful extras only feed your delight and please your eyes; it’s the practical additions that ensure your comfort and boost your wellbeing inside a house.
  2. Keep Your Options Open by Counting on the Insight Offered by California’s #1 Apartment Finder. Whatever you do, don’t say yes to the first property that you get to tour, even if it manages to respond to most of your needs and demands. Learn to be selective and do your research before investing in a property, even if you’re only interested in a short-term lease. Keep in mind that a house hunt doesn’t necessarily have to be time-consuming and costly. If you’re looking forward to cutting down costs associated with your upcoming apartment search and want to discover a simpler way to analyze rentals and pick favorites, use the listings delivered by Apartment Hunterz to accomplish your mission. Find and save listings with a few clicks, talk to multiple landlords online, in real time, and spend less on a rental property that could offer you the highest number of benefits.


7 Signs Indicating That You Should Leave Your Old Apartment and Start Looking for a New Rental

shutterstock_158589470Saying goodbye to a place that you’ve considered your home for so long can be heartbreaking, especially if that particular house or apartment is filled with awesome memories and if you always tend to get attached to places, people and things. Nonetheless, while change is never easy, it is usually for the best. When you’re contemplating a move, the plethora of “what-ifs” that may be on your mind can complicate the entire process, making it even more stressful and time-consuming.

If you don’t actually have to move, how could you possibly figure out whether your decision to find a new apartment is a smart call or a caprice that you may end up regretting in a few weeks? To make things a bit easier for you and help you achieve clarity on this matter, we have compiled a list of the main reasons that could justify your move and your desire to get involved in a house hunt.

  1. The Reasons Why You Would Renew Your Lease Are Weak. Think about it this way: what stops you from renting a new apartment today? If you can’t come up with any good reasons why you shouldn’t start looking for a new roof over your head and can’t name at least five advantages offered by the property that you’re currently occupying, then maybe a big move is exactly what you need to add excitement to your life.
  2. You Want to Target a New Neighborhood That Is a Better Match for Your Lifestyle. Many tenants make a big mistake when it comes to selecting a new apartment in California: they make a final call mostly based on one selection criterion: rental rates. After the first months spent in their neighborhood of choice, they realize that their ZIP code is a poor match for your lifestyle choices. This is why you should research your options before even meeting landlords in person. In California you can find neighborhoods suitable for professionals, young families with kids, seniors and so on; so go online and discover the particularities of the areas that you like best before signing a rental agreement, to avoid a potential mismatch.
  3. You Think That You’re Overspending on Rent. It’s no secret that apartments for rent in California are far from being cheap. On the other hand, this doesn’t mean that you should stop looking for great deals on the local real estate market. If you have the impression that you’re spending too much on rent, analyze the listings provided by Apartment Hunterz and compare various attractive options in terms of price, square footage, amenities, features, location and other aspects that you may consider relevant. After all, why waste money on rent when you can find and rent an apartment similar to the one that you’re occupying for less?
  4. You Can’t Get Along with Your Neighbors. You may not be able to choose your family, but you can definitely be very selective when it comes to choosing your friends and your neighbors. If the people who are living next door to you are always noisy or rude and their daily actions make you feel uncomfortable and less satisfied with the apartment that you’re currently renting, maybe you should consider moving out. It’s no use to surround yourself with negative people who make your home feel less like home, so don’t hesitate to start looking for an apartment offering you the chance to become a part of a welcoming, nurturing community that will accept you with open arms.
  5. You No Longer Feel Comfortable Inside Your Apartment. Is your landlord constantly ignoring your repair or improvement requests? Is he virtually impossible to reach? Do you spend most of your time in an apartment that could use an extreme makeover? If your answers to these questions are affirmative, then maybe now would be a good time to track down inexpensive, well run rental properties in California with Apartment Hunterz. California’s number one apartment finder offers you access to thousands of listings, maximizing your odds of stumbling across great landlords and truly amazing apartments and houses for rent in record time.
  6. You (Know That) Deserve Something Better. OK, so maybe you can’t blame your landlord or property manager for not honoring your repair requests. Maybe the onsite maintenance is above average, the apartment building is modern, structurally safe and clean, and your neighborhood is quiet and safe.

Nonetheless, even if you don’t have any real reasons to complain about your rented apartment, you also don’t have any real reasons to love it. Maybe you find it rather dull and unappealing or too small or basic for your needs, and you’d wish to find a brighter, more spacious or more inviting replacement. In this case, the solution to your problem is simple: rely on a good apartment finding service to analyze your options before deciding to write a notice of intent to vacate the property that you’re occupying at this point. Check out different listings, save your searches, go back to the rentals that have caught your eye, contact landlords, make use of your negotiation skills and close a deal in a matter of a few days.

  1. You Want to Explore Other Cities in California. Maybe your apartment is not the problem here. Perhaps your intention to start a new house hunt can be linked to new goals in your personal or professional life. Regardless of the factors that may stimulate you to relocate to a different city, remember that Apartment Hunterz offers you the opportunity to discover convenient rentals in some of the most desirable Californian cities. Perform a targeted search on this platform, use a great variety of tools to filter listings and reach landlords and find a new amazing for rent property before you can say “I’m so tired of my old apartment!”

The Basic Apartment Hunting Rules That You Can’t Afford to Ignore in Today’s Market

shutterstock_159864659More and more people appreciate the convenience and overall efficiency of online platforms allowing them to socialize, share or buy things they need and want, and get prompt solutions to their daily problems.

This being said, should you turn to a website that you may consider an online wonderland to spot the perfect apartment for rent in California? Generally speaking, a reputable apartment finding service will offer you the assistance, tools and insight that you may require to avoid scammers, check out the best listings in your area and establish a good connection with property managers and landlords. While online environments make it easier for you to save time, money and energy while looking for a new roof over your head, you still have to set the coordinates for a successful apartment search. Here are a few easy tips that you should apply to turn your first Californian apartment hunt into one of the greatest experiences of your life.

  1. Know Your Limits, and Your Price. First of all, know and accept your limitations. Exclude the properties that you can’t realistically afford to rent, no matter how tempting they may be. Avoid long commutes by identifying the budget-friendly neighborhoods that are closer to your office. Did you know that you could save up to $1,500 on rent simply by doing your homework and discovering the ZIP codes with the lowest rental rates? For instance, a modest apartment in Dogpatch, San Francisco could cost you around $4,300 per month, while a similar property available for rent in Central Sunset would only take approximately $2,800 out of your pockets each month? Do your research online, compare neighborhoods and perform a targeted search with Apartment Hunterz to spot the most attractive eligible candidates during your apartment hunt.
  2. Research the Rental Apartment, and the Its Management Company. It’s always a good idea to read online reviews and gather essential information on landlords and the properties that they’re renting. However, during this phase, many potential tenants ignore the fact that they should also try to dig a little deeper to uncover details related to the overall performance of the management company. Does your rental of choice have its own security team? Does the maintenance team include a crew of dependable, veteran handyman who are trained, ready and willing to address any kind of problem, day and night? Your comfort and peace of mind depend on these answers, so make sure you gather all the info on a rental’s management company before actually signing on the dotted line.
  3. Get Acquainted with the Area. To begin with, you can use a great variety of online tools, such as Google Maps, to discover the particularities of the area where you have found the coolest apartments for rent online. Next, look for neighborhood reports allowing you to determine whether the rental apartment or house is a good match for you. While the ad may imply that the neighborhood is perfectly safe day and night, this new environment may not match your lifestyle, expectations and personality. For instance, a ZIP code teeming with young professionals may not be the best pick for seniors; this is why it would be best to evaluate your options before touring the property and its surroundings in person, at different times of the day, to capture its real vibe.
  4. Keep in Mind That Smaller Is Usually Better. Smaller properties are usually a more attractive option for two different reasons: first of all, they help you save money and experience the joy of renting an apartment without having to share your space with a roommate. One extra room could cost you a small fortune in one of the most expensive Californian cities, so opt for a property offering you as much space as you realistically need. For instance, a 1-bedroom apartment in San Diego could cost you under $1,800 per month, while a 3-bedrooom one is currently in the $2,800 range.

Secondly, in general, smaller apartment complexes ensure better service and a higher level of comfort. Any tenant who is already occupying an apartment that is a part of a large complex will tell you just how difficult it can be to get help when you need it. When you’re sharing your space with 200 other people, you’re probably not the only one who has a complaint or a repair/improvement request. In such cases, you will have to wait in line, especially when non-emergency grievances represent the core of the problem that you’re reporting.

Here’s another key piece of advice that we would like to share with you: don’t sacrifice your overall wellbeing to protect your finances. We know what you may be inclined to think: you’re young, so you can spend a couple of years or so in a shoebox apartment with paper-thin walls. You can put up with noisy neighbors, bossy landlords, unreliable property managers, messy surroundings and less comfortable, ancient furniture. But the truth is that the space that you choose to occupy influences your mood, productivity and daily choices more than you could ever imagine.

For instance, did you know that clutter affects your ability to process information and focus? This means that a small, unorganized apartment could lower your performance at work and stand in the way of your career-related ambitions. Also, mess causes stress, triggering a feeling of guilt and making it increasingly difficult for people to relax in their own environments.

Why deal with all these negative aspects when you could actually find a great apartment in your price range with Apartment Hunterz? Check the listings delivered by California’s premier apartment finder, use your filters of choice to find the best options in certain areas of interest, and explore advanced features to communicate with landlords and handle paperwork with ease. Discover a new, simplified way to conduct an effective house hunt and turn your first apartment search into a fun adventure with Apartment Hunterz.