Apartment Buyers and Renters Should Pay Attention to These 9 Things

Purchasing or renting an apartment is no small task. It requires dedication to making appointments to view apartments, filling out the necessary paperwork, and paying attention to little details that could have a bigger impact later if you decide to live in an apartment. While it can be fun for apartment buyers and renters to daydream about their new place and consider where they might like to live, it can also be stressful to decide where you want to live while crossing your fingers that you’ll get approved for your dream apartment. Although purchasing and renting apartments may seem like a straightforward process, it can be complicated if you’re not sure what you need to do to get a good apartment.

For first-time apartment buyers and renters, the process of getting an apartment will feel all the more overwhelming. Beyond sorting through your feelings about moving away from home for the first time, it can be a lot to suddenly shoulder all of this responsibility for ensuring that you have a roof over your head. Even though it might seem like it’s too much at times, it’ll be worth the pressure and worrying when you’re sleeping soundly in your new place for the first time once you’ve received the keys to your new apartment.

1. Pay Attention to Plumbing

While apartment buyers and renters might be fixated on a beautiful spiral staircase or an interesting element in a room, it’s a good idea to look below the surface of a home and see what the plumbing looks like. During a tour of an apartment you intend to buy or rent, you should turn on the faucets to see if they leak or if the water runs insanely hot. You should also ask how old the apartment is and inquire about concerns like lead paint being used in the pipes or whether a water heater is older than it’s supposed to be.

Before you settle on an apartment, you should know whether the water is harder than you like and what your options are for water softeners. Some things like shower heads are easy to replace if you don’t like them but the quality of the water can be tough to fix. If having specific types of bathing facilities like a tub matters to you, don’t compromise on an apartment that lacks that sort of item even if it checks off all of the other boxes on your proverbial list.

2. Note the Bedroom

Since apartment buyers and renters will spend a lot of time in their bedrooms every night, it’s wise to make a bedroom a priority when you’re hunting for an apartment. Although you might think that you just need any room to sleep in, you should see if the bedroom is large enough for your bedroom furniture and consider if any shared walls could disturb your sleep. When you’re touring an apartment, it might not seem like a big deal if the bedroom shares a wall with the living room but if you intend to live with a partner or roommate who likes to watch TV late at night, it could ruin your quality of sleep over time.

While you can view the way the apartment is as a set way that it will be if you’re renting, apartment owners can see their space as a blank canvas that’s ready for you to project your vision onto it. Even if you don’t love certain elements of a bedroom when you tour an apartment, it may be possible to replace them once you move into it. If you hate the doors to the closets, you can install custom closet doors and if you’re not a fan of the color of the bedroom walls, you can add a fresh coat of paint or a tapestry if you don’t want to make permanent changes while you’re living there.

3. Notice Any Needed Repairs

Although you won’t own an apartment yet when you tour it with other apartment buyers and renters, you should still take note of repairs that might need to happen in the place and ask whether the seller or landlord intends to fix them before you move into the space. For small repairs like tiny holes in the wall, you should be able to fix them yourself with some basic DIY knowledge even if they aren’t resolved before you move into the apartment. Larger repairs like needing to replace a heater or update outdated appliances may impact whether you’d be interested in an apartment if the seller or landlord puts the responsibility of getting them done onto the next person who lives there.

When it comes to certain fixes like window repairs, you should be able to find contractors who specialize in that area of construction and home improvement. Specialized problems may require you to get creative and call several different contractors before you find one who feels confident in their abilities to get the job done. If you need to complete an air conditioning repair, any HVAC technician should be able to help you as long as they have the proper training and qualifications.

If you’re buying an apartment, you might be able to obtain loans that could help you afford to make repairs if you get a “fixer-upper.” Sometimes, you’ll get what you pay for with an apartment so if an apartment is well below market rate, it might have some key issues that need to be resolved to make it habitable. If you’re a tenant, you should review your tenant rights and your lease to see what a landlord needs to do to make a unit safe for living.

4. Pay Attention to the Details

Frequently, apartment buyers and renters find it easier to focus on the big picture of finding an apartment instead of zeroing in on finer details that could impact your life in your new apartment if you fail to notice them before you’re responsible for the new place. Little things like lacking blinds on the windows or having a sloppy paint job might not seem like they’re a big deal when you’re looking at a place, but they’ll come back to haunt you if you don’t pay attention to them before you live there. If you need window coverings, there are plenty of window shades companies who can help so that shouldn’t be a deterrent for renting an apartment.

When you look at an apartment, you should look for subtle signs of pests, damage, and unpleasant environmental factors. If you view an apartment during the day, a few abandoned buildings on your block might not look like they could pose a problem but when you stay there for the first night, you could learn the hard way that these spaces are hotbeds for criminal activity and other disturbances. Additionally, what seems like a bit of dirt in certain places to the untrained eye could point to a rodent problem once you move into the place so it’s a good idea to speak with the previous owners about pest control measures and any issues they’ve had in this area in the past before you commit to owning this apartment and living there full-time.

5. See What Amenities They Have

One of the main draws that a complex has to attract apartment buyers and renters is the amenities it offers. From a swimming pool to a gym to a snack bar, there are plenty of amenities that you may want to consider before you decide that an apartment is right for you. If you go with an apartment that is working with pool companies to install a pool before you move into the place, you should ask them what their timeline is for completing the project so you know whether it could benefit you while you live there.

Beyond the apartment unit and the building, you should look outside of the apartment to see if they have any hardscaping and other amenities that could make it look like a beautiful place to live. If an apartment complex doesn’t take care of its lawn or has a lackluster landscape design, it could be an indicator that they let other things slide. As a result, you should view every aspect of a property through a cautious, curious lens that lets you see the good, the bad, and the ugly before you agree to spend your hard-earned money to live somewhere.

6. Look at the Kitchen and Bathroom

Whether you plan to eat out all the time or cook elaborate feasts in your new kitchen, apartment buyers and renters need to pay attention to the size and layout of the kitchen along with any potential concerns like outlets that malfunction or appliances that haven’t been updated in decades. Depending on where you live, it may be normal for you to share a bathroom with other tenants or it might be common to have a communal kitchen so you should judge these spaces based on the typical standards for your area. If you notice that common areas like bathrooms and kitchens are a wreck, you should consider passing on an apartment even if you love it to avoid hazards to your health and well-being.

If you’re looking to own an apartment, you don’t have to worry if your new place’s bathroom and kitchen are your dream rooms. You can contact a bathtub renovator and related contractors to bring your dream bathroom vision to life. You can also plan to have multiple stages to the renovation process to make it more affordable and ensure that you won’t have all of your rooms under construction at all times.

7. Look Into Storage Solutions

For those who are getting an apartment to downsize, it can be a good idea to look into self storage options. These spaces are usually climate-controlled. For apartment buyers and renters, the building where your apartment is may have storage units to rent or buy, as well.

8. Look at Surroundings

Before you agree to buy or rent an apartment, you should take a look at the area that surrounds the apartment. If the top soil looks like it’s in poor condition in the gardens nearby or you see that your apartment is right across from a seedy dive bar, it may be best to reconsider living there. For apartment buyers and renters, the environment around your new place matters as much as the condition of your new apartment.

9. Manage Your Expectations

Many of us go into the apartment buying or renting process with an idea of what our ideal apartment would be. We may think that we want a gorgeous luxury apartment in the center of town that is on a high floor in the building with marble countertops and a hot tub in the bathroom. Once we start looking for an apartment, though, we may find that our budget or the market doesn’t allow us to get exactly what we desire.

Although it can be disheartening to feel like you’re settling for an apartment that isn’t perfect for you, you should stay realistic about what you can afford and what’s available in your area. If you need to move into an apartment soon, you may not have time to be picky about where you live. For those on a shoestring budget, results in the apartment search might be less than glamorous.

Although apartment buyers and renters have a lot in common, there are some key differences between those who are purchasing an apartment and those who are renting one. Firstly, if you’re buying an apartment, you’ll have a mortgage to pay on your own and you may have property taxes, HOA fees, and other costs that you wouldn’t have if you were a renter. Secondly, those who are buying an apartment will be able to make changes to their home since they own it which someone might not be able to do if their lease on an apartment forbade it. Some folks prefer renting because they would rather that someone else is responsible for maintaining the property and managing it while others may like the control that buying an apartment gives the owner, so it all depends on your goals and personality.

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