While having your own property may be a dream come true, rented out real estate is still a home. This means that there are certain conditions you need to respect in order to fulfill the lease agreement. However, not all maintenance obligations fall on you and some are the responsibility of the landlord.
So, here are things to be careful about when living in a rented out home that will make your stay comfortable and keep the property in perfect shape.
Always pay the bills on time
As a tenant, you will most likely be responsible for all of the bills in your rented out home. Usually, this includes electricity, water, and landline bill, as well as certain taxes and insurance. Also, you will have to cover cable and internet bills.
Of course, there are cases when the landlord will take care of these bills or at least some of them, so it’s important that the lease agreement defines the terms. This is something you should check with the real estate agent or landlord before you sign the lease to know all the details from the start. Whatever bills you pay, make sure it’s on time to avoid penalties and even discontinuation of service.
Have good relations with the neighbors
The reasons to stay in good relations with neighbors are always the same, no matter if you are living in a rented out home or you own the property. First and foremost, it’s the question of safety since you will have extra eyes on your home. Also, you can find help in your neighborhood in case you are locked out or any other emergency that may occur.
If you have children, they will find new playmates only a few doors from you and you will always have someone to watch over them if necessary. After all, bad neighborhood relations are nerve-wracking and cause discord in the community.
Act responsibly in case of damage
The lease agreement will define which repairs you should do in case of malfunction or damage, and which fall under the responsibility of the landlord. Tear and wear is something that happens naturally because the property is in use by the tenant and is not caused by neglect or abuse. This is something the landlord will cover since they documented the condition of the property prior to lease.
However, if you caused damage which is a direct consequence of your actions, no matter if they were intentional or accidental, you need to do the repairs. For example, dirty grout between the tiles falls under tear and wear, while broken or chipped ones are tenant’s responsibility. But damage will happen sometimes no matter how careful you are, so set aside a budget just in case.
Do regular cleaning and decluttering
Cleaning and decluttering shouldn’t be something you do on occasion since it can damage your health and the property you are renting. If you are exposed to dust and dirt for a long period of time you may contract allergies and certain health conditions like asthma. Furthermore, certain bugs and rodents are attracted to clutter and can damage the structure, woodwork and electrical installations.
Additionally, since the landlord will rent you clean property, that’s how you should leave it for those who will live there after you. Some people choose to do this thorough cleaning on their own, while many others opt to hire a reliable end of lease cleaning company when moving out. Either way, the important part is to take care of other people’s property as if it were your own and you will have no problems.
Stay in contact with your landlord
You don’t have to be best friends with your landlord, but you should stay in touch with them other than when you give them rent. If the landlord believes you are a good tenant, then they may address certain issues promptly and even tolerate occasional late payments. However, don’t make a habit of paying your rent late, since that may ruin the trust and relationship you built with your landlord.
Living in a rented out home may not be your dream but it’s only a step to having a property of your own. However, pay attention to terms of your lease agreement and act as a responsible tenant. It is a way to learn most of the things you can expect to come up when you become a homeowner.