4 Essential Things You Should Know Before Renting in California

iStock_000020990431_SmallYour relocation to California is one of the most important goals that you wish to attain this year. At this point, you are probably daydreaming about the perfect career opportunity waiting for you just around the corner, or you are picturing your sunny weekends spent on a nice sandy beach. But how much do you actually know about the local real estate market? In-depth research is your key to avoiding scams and offers that may not be as attractive as they seem at a first glance. Here are 4 essential things that you should know before making a first step towards renting a place in California.

  1. Not All Rental Agreements Must Be in Writing. You should know that there are two types of rental agreements: written and oral ones. Oral agreements generally involve fewer rules than written ones. However, they might also expose you and your renter to several risks. Just think about it: after a few months, you and the landlord may remember your agreement differently. On the other hand, a written month-to-month agreement or a lease offers more certainties; in this case, make sure you understand all the clauses and also keep in mind that all the blank spaces in the document have to be filled.
  2. The Names of the Owner and Property Manager Should Be Listed on the Rental Agreement. Some tenants have a hard time trying to track down their landlord or building owner. In California, tenants do not have to deal with this kind of problems. In the Golden State, the law says that the contact info of the owner and property manager should be listed on the rental agreement. This makes it easier for the tenant to contact the people who own the property that they live in, in case of an emergency.
  3. Who Should Pay for Repairs? Let’s face it: accidents happen. One day, your children might break a glass window while playing or use their crayons to “beautify” one of your walls. Who is going to pay for these repairs? The answer is simple: if you (or your family members) are responsible for the damages, you should pay for repairs out of your own pocket. On the other hand, if you did not cause the prejudice, the landlord is the one who should take care of this problem as soon as possible. At the end of the day, it’s his obligation to make sure that his tenants occupy (and spend their money on) a perfectly livable space.
  4. You Don’t Have to Conduct Your House Hunt on Your Own. People who are not familiar with the written and unwritten rules of the Californian real estate market are often having a hard time trying to spot convenient rentals. Fortunately, Apartment Hunterz lends them a helping hand, by providing recent, accurate listings. Count on the connections and know-how of the biggest and most respectable Californian apartment finder to find the best offers and start a new chapter of your life in a lovely house or apartment matching your specific criteria.
26
Jan 2015
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Ways in Which California’s Largest Apartment Finder Can Help You Rent Your Property

Happy girl given house key - indoorWe totally get it: you’re too busy to rent your place. Lots of people who work the 9-to-5 schedule don’t actually have the time and energy required to find and screen potential tenants. And still you could use a secondary source of income and you would very much like to know that your vacant property is in good hands at all times. Here are three ways in which Apartment Hunterz could help you spot the perfect tenants for your Californian rental.

  1. Create Free Landlord Account and Post Free Listing

Start your collaboration with Apartment Hunterz by creating your free landlord account and posting your listing at no extra charge. The process is very simple: you just have to list your basic info, including name and contact information, title, property type, a brief description, location, number of bedrooms and bathrooms, square footage, availability, pet policy, monthly rent, lease terms and so on. This type of free listing may also contain very succinct details related to other important aspects that may concern a tenant, such as parking, laundry, cooking and view.

  1. Make Sure Your Rental Property Benefits from the Highest Level of Exposure.

How exactly do you plan to promote your Californian rental? Word-of-mouth could turn out to be pretty effective in the long run, but it may also fail to deliver the rapid results that you are waiting for.  On the other hand, Apartment Hunterz understands your rush and makes it easier for you to attract potential tenants over the shortest period of time. With Apartment Hunterz you can create your own listings online, with help from a courteous staff member or via fax. Whichever option you choose, you can expect your listing to be seen by 20,000 unique daily visitors and other 2,500 active members. Moreover, the featured listings are automatically emailed to potential tenants. This type of exposure enables you to find the ideal in approximately three days, with minimal effort on your behalf.

  1. Post As Many Pictures and Virtual Tours As You Like

How can you convince your potential tenants to tour your property in person? The key is to prove that your house has an amazing curb appeal and a lot of potential. With Apartment Hunterz, you can post as many photos as you see fit per listing. This gives you the chance to introduce and promote your slice of Californian real estate from different angles and give viewers a few extra reasons to schedule an appointment with you as soon as possible. As a plus, Apartment Hunterz also enables you to receive applications and schedule appointments online, to help busy tenants enjoy a simpler, much more convenient house hunt.

All in all, a maximum level of exposure, a larger pool of potential tenants, convenient appointment scheduling and 24/7 assistance are the main benefits that you can expect to profit from as a landlord, while working closely with Apartment Hunterz to fill your vacancies in a matter of a few days.

Ways to Help You Recover Your Security Deposit after Renting a Place in Cali

Security depositNo matter where you would choose to rent a place in the Golden State, you would inevitably meet two distinctive types of landlords: those who expect you to walk on air without actually touching their belongings, and the ones who understand that tenants inevitably contribute to fair signs of wear and tear displayed by a rental property. How do you recognize the people listed in the first category? To begin with, they’re not exactly very friendly. They will most likely drop by unexpectedly, underline your contractual obligations at all times and talk about the impressive amount of money that they have invested in the property that you are currently occupying. In this context, you are probably wondering: how could I prepare myself for the unforeseen? In short, how should you act to make sure that you recover your security deposit and terminate your collaboration with your landlord on good terms?

Take Before and After Pictures. A good camera and a great attention to detail are your strongest allies when it comes to preventing potential claims made by your landlord. As soon as you move in, take pictures revealing noticeable flaws that you may be held responsible for (chipped paint, cracks in the floor and so on). Copies of your dated and properly labeled photos should be sent by your landlord in an envelope that should also comprise the standard inventory.

Battle Issues Linked to Damp. Sometimes, the worst problems associated with your rental property come unannounced and have very little to do with your daily actions. For instance, damp can cause an endless list of issues, ranging from a persistent unpleasant odor to stained walls requiring a costly repainting job. To prevent this problem you can explore a few distinctive paths: you can leave your heating on for a couple of hours during the day or use a dehumidifier provided by your landlord. Damp patches that may appear on your wall could be easily removed using a mix of diluted bleach and detergent.

Don’t Let Your Landlord Catch You Off Guard. We will let you in on a little secret: most landlords tend to be very territorial. This means that they have a sixth sense when it comes to spotting flaws displayed by their property at the end of a lease. Here’s a word of advice that you should follow: be paranoid. Clean your rental periodically and don’t forget to check out hard-to-reach, difficult-to-remember areas that you don’t actually come in contact with. Look under your kitchen cabinets, check the top corners of your rooms and ask a colleague or a friend to double-check everything. Once you become familiar with an indoor space, it becomes increasingly difficult to notice minor imperfections, such as dirt buildups. This rule does not apply to your landlord, who will most likely be tempted to channel his remarkable attention to detail to make you kiss your deposit goodbye.

It’s not always easy to establish a great relationship with a landlord. Fortunately, Apartment Hunterz facilitates your collaboration with friendly, courteous and dependable independent property owners and property managers and lets you choose the ideal Californian rental matching your expectations.

 

25
Dec 2014
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4 Easy Ways to Prep Your Californian Rental for Winter  

Mountain roadThe holiday season stimulates us to relax, leave our worries behind and spend more quality time with the people who truly make a difference in our lives. But at the same time, one simply cannot take a break from reality. Bills have to be paid, deadlines have to be met and Californian rental properties have to be kept in excellent condition. California is a giant state counting multiple climates. Snow is not exactly uncommon in Central and Northern California.

As you may already know, piles of snow, a heavy rainfall and reduced temperatures can cause severe damage and impact the looks and end value of your property in multiple ways. To prevent this nuisance, simply apply the following tips on how to winterize your rental.

Cover Visible Cracks. Ice can enlarge cracks present in concrete surfaces. This is precisely why you should make an effort to cover those old cracks displayed by your sidewalks and driveways before the weather gets really bad.

Inspect Gutters, Chimneys and Roofs before the First Snow. Ample repairs undergone by these structures can burn holes in your pockets; therefore, it is safe to say that prevention is better than cure. You could easily install individual roof singles on your own, or you could hire a roofer to complete this assignment. A professional could assess the general condition of your roof, chimney and gutters while providing no-obligation estimates and quality services.

Check Carbon Monoxide and Smoke Detectors. According to the data provided by the National Fire Protection Association, 97% of all American homes have at least one smoke alarm; unfortunately, more than 37% of all fatalities triggered by home fires were reported in properties with no smoke alarms, while 23% of all deaths were linked to houses with defective smoke detectors. These numbers reveal just how important it really is to check your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors regularly and change their batteries (if needed).

Power Wash Your Property to Remove Dirt Accumulations. Dirt, microorganisms and algae can be removed by power washing your property. Moreover, during winter you will most likely have to deal with a layer of snow or ice. Ice deposits can damage the a wide range of construction materials, while also triggering more than a few slip and fall accidents potentially resulting in injuries and costly lawsuits. To avoid such worst-case scenarios, simply remember to keep your outdoor areas clean, apply safe ice melting chemicals on icy surfaces and wear slip-resistant footwear.

Taking the Easy Way Out

Truth be told, all these fairly simple assignments require time, energy and out-of-pocket expenses. Instead of power washing your deck, wouldn’t you rather watch your favorite TV show, crawl up on your couch or have a cup of tea with your friends? In this case, you should strive to find a property manager who can handle all these pressing tasks without getting you involved in the regular maintenance routine. To spot the best deals on the Californian real estate market, choose to involve Apartment Hunterz in your search. By offering you access to rental rates, the knowledge of move-in experts, open houses and community features, Apartment Hunterz lets you get acquainted with the most sought-after Californian ZIP codes and their real estate treasures. The largest Californian apartment scout works closely with property managers and independent property owners to help you make the most of convenient apartments or houses for sale matching your specific requirements.

23
Dec 2014
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Best Californian Destinations That Let You Admire the Most Spectacular Fall Foliage

Photo Credit: iStock Photo

Photo Credit: iStock Photo

Maybe the torrid days of summer found you trapped in your office, struggling to meet your deadlines. Perhaps you didn’t have time to go on a relaxing trip and can’t wait to plan the most amazing holiday in the lovely state of California. If you have a thing for the superb shades of brown, gold and red that autumn brings along and want to make up for the lost time, you can just hop in your car and decide to spend a few days in some of the most popular Californian destinations that are famous for their outstanding fall foliage.

Lake Tahoe. From the last days of September until the end of October, Lake Tahoe attracts a large number of visitors who wish to break the everyday monotony by enjoying the simplest things in life in a warm, natural and simulating environment. Lake Tahoe’s western shores will let you discover an undisturbed chromatic harmony based on the most intense shades of copper, bronze and gold displayed by maples, oaks and aspens.

Napa Valley. Fancy a glass of the finest wine produced in the U.S.? Napa Valley is well-known for its prestigious vineyards and beautiful surroundings. This is the perfect spot to relax, indulge in the very best fine wining and dining options, rent the cutest cottage, tour the vineyards and enjoy the breathtaking views.

Big Bear Lake. If you have already seen Lake Tahoe and would much rather target a new Californian destination that also encompasses a fair amount of clean surface water, beautiful color schemes, plenty of vegetation and affordable housing options, plan a trip to Big Bear Lake from mid-October until early November. During this timeframe, you will be able to make the most of friendly weather and contemplate the panoramic views offered by the popular Cougar Crest Trail. This trail can be quite challenging, especially if you’re in a poor physical condition or if you are accompanied by kids. In this situation, you may want to choose Woodland Trail, a trail that is considerably less difficult, yet it still enables hikers to have a great time while discovering the unmatched beauty of the local flora.

Do you still think that vacation rentals available in these prime locations will make you go bankrupt?  If the answer is yes, we can give you a good reason to reconsider. Cali-based “for rent” properties can make you exceed your allocated budget only if you don’t do your homework properly. You don’t have to spend up to 3,000 dollars per night on a superb ranch in Napa Valley providing maximum privacy and dozens of secluded areas to feel comfortable. As a matter of fact, for only a few hundreds of dollars per night you could get the keys to an elegant cottage with pool and fantastic views, located in the same ZIP code. Knowledge is power; therefore, if you want to admire the best fall color schemes in the most renowned Californian places, count on Apartment Hunterz to spot the most amazing deals on the local real estate market.

 

30
Oct 2014
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