Advice for Renters
The Chicago area provides a wide range of housing options. If now is not the right time for you to buy a home, there are many options for renting.
Once we know what you are looking for in an apartment we will go to work to find the perfect home for you. We have the experience to educate you on the advantages of living in each area.
When viewing rental properties, be sure to dress in a business casual fashion. In many ways, this will be an interview. The landlord is looking for the very best tenant for their rental. It is important to make a good first impression.
Once you find the home you want to rent, you will be expected to fill out a rental application form and submit a check for a credit report and the first month’s rent.
Contact Me for help with your rental needs.
First Step: Choose Your Preferences
Age of the rental
Are you looking for a new building? Something with a vintage appeal?
Type of Building
Would you prefer a high rise? A mid-rise? A townhouse?
We will give you a run down of possible neighborhoods to help you decide which area would be best for you.
What is your price range? We will help you determine if the asking price for each apartment is reasonable for its size and location.
Pets will decrease your renting options. If you have a pet, you should expect to pay a higher monthly rent and security deposit. In addition, the options for dog owners are much less than those for cat owners.
Number of Bedrooms
Also, consider the following:
Proximity to shopping and transportation
Closet space, and storage options
Quality of the Landlord
Amenities – Laundry, exercise room, pool, balconies
Security of the building – Does the apartment have a doorman? A buzzer system?
Gather the following documentation before looking at properties:
WHEN YOU ARE SEARCHING FOR AN APARTMENT, THESE ARE QUESTIONS YOU WOULD DO WELL TO ASK OF YOUR AGENT
- When is rent due?
- Are there penalties for late payments? What are they?
- How long is the lease?
- After the initial term of the lease, will I need to renew for a year or will I be able to lease month to month?
- What are the lease breaking fees?
- Are there any application fees?
- What utilities are included in the rent?
- What is the approximate cost for utilities that are not included in the rent?
- Are there any costs for setting up the utilities that are not covered in the rent?
- Is parking included in the rent or are there any additional parking fees?
- Where is the parking area?
- Is there a pool? Can it be used by anyone? Are there any additional fees for using the pool or gym area?
- How big is the hot water heater and is the hot water heater shared with any other apartments? (This is a relatively important question, if there is a small heater, or if there is one shared with your neighbor who likes to take hour long showers right before you have to get up, you may end up taking cold showers more often than you’d like.)
- How much is the security deposit? How much of the deposit is returned at the end of the lease? What will prevent me from getting my security deposit back?
- How long is the lease?
- Is sub-leasing allowed?
- What happens if I accidentally break an appliance?
- How is routine maintenance completed for the unit? Are maintenance people on call 24 hours a day? If not, who should you call if there is an emergency?
- Am I allowed to paint the walls?
- Am I allowed to hang pictures with nails?
- Am I allowed to have overnight guests?
- What are the procedures if I decide to have a roommate at a later time?
- Do you require renters insurance?
- Are there any noise level restrictions?
- Where are the smoke detectors and do they work?
- If there isn’t an in-unit washer and dryer, where is the laundry and what is the cost?
- Can you get cell phone reception inside the apartment?
- Am I allowed to have pets? If I don’t have one now, and I get one, will I be forced to move?