3 Reasons Why Renting an Apartment Is a Headache

In many ways, the idea of renting an apartment can seem like it has a lot of advantages over making a purchase. You won’t have to pay as much money up front, plus the agreements you sign are much more flexible. This means it is much easier for you to move on if you feel the need to.

However, renting also comes with a number of headaches that you will need to consider before you make a choice one way or the other. What may seem like a good idea could turn out to be a nightmare once you finally get the keys to your new place.

Bad Landlords

In an ideal world anybody who acts as a landlord for a building will be vigilant when it comes to handling tenant’s concerns and problems. Unfortunately, there are many cases where a landlord simply doesn’t want to express the interest that they need to in order to ensure their tenants are comfortable.

Try to do a little bit of research into other properties owned by the landlord before signing an agreement. If possible, it is also a good idea to talk to other tenants, particular if the landlord owns the entire apartment block. Find out how easy they are to communicate and how they react when news of a problem is sent to them.

Privacy

Apartments, by their very nature, do not offer the same levels of privacy that you would be able to experience if you buy or rent a family home. You will often encounter people in the hallways, which is not a problem in most cases but can become something of an issue if you don’t happen to get along with a fellow tenant for whatever reason.

Furthermore, you will find that you can often hear noises from your neighbours, no matter if they live next door or on a different floor. While this can be distracting, it also means that they can hear you as well. This only further serves to reduce your levels of privacy, which can be an issue for many people. It also means that you may run into trouble if you try to hold a party or engage in any noisy activities.

The Neighbours

Much like with landlords, you can never guarantee that your fellow tenants are going to be the type of people that you want as neighbours. As much research as you do into a building, it is often difficult to determine what the neighbours are going to be like over the long term until you have actually taken the plunge and moved in.

Furthermore, you will usually find that landlords are less than willing to hand over any information about troublesome tenants. After all, they want to get a paying tenant into any vacant apartment that they have, so while they may not lie to you they may withhold the truth in some cases. Bad neighbours can exist in any walk of life, but in an apartment you are in such close proximity that it can become a major headache.

7 Tips to Know Before You Buy an Apartment

The process of purchasing an apartment is more complicated than that of purchasing a house. This is because you don’t purchase the land right away. If you are going to buy an apartment for the first time, we suggest that you follow the 7 tips given below. Read on to find out more.

1. Freehold and leasehold

First, you should understand the difference between leasehold and freehold. In case of a freehold property, the buyer owns the land and the home. On the other hand, a leasehold is the property that you pay for to occupy, but you share the property with other people.

For instance, flats are leased as they are made in a building that’s shared with hundreds of other people. In fact, this is one of the most obvious differences between a leasehold property and a freehold one.

2. Lease period

In case of leasehold, the buyer buys the right to live in the said property for a specific period. This period can be up to 999 years long. With the passage of time, this value comes down. Therefore, it’s important that you find out the time remaining on the lease. You can ask your real estate agent to find out this information for you.

3. Service charges

You should find out about the ground rent and other service charges you need to pay for the apartment. Plus, you should find out about who will be responsible for the communal area repairs. This will help you set your budget properly.

4. Alterations

Can you make changes to the property? If so, are there any restrictions to follow? The restrictions can be either subtle or obvious. If you have major plans to make alterations to the flat, you may want to contact your lawyer.

5. Major repairs

The service charges may include general maintenance as well. However, it may not cover major repairs like roof repairs. For large repairs, make sure you know the person who will pay for them. This is quite important, especially if you have a limited budget for repairs and other tasks of this sort. Keep in mind that major repairs will cost a great deal of money.

6. Restrictions

Make sure you know if you can keep pets in your apartment or not. Some apartment buildings don’t allow any type of pets. Similarly, some apartments don’t allow to play music after, say, 12pm. Therefore, you should ask your real estate agent about the restrictions you have to follow.

7. Assistance

After you have bought your apartment, make sure you know who will come to your help when you are in need. You can contact the lease advisory service of government to find out information about landlords and tenants.

In short, if you are going to buy an apartment, we suggest that you check out these tips. With these tips in mind, it will be much easier for you to make the right choice and avoid some common mistakes. Hopefully, this can help you go through the process more easily.

Leasing-Planning for First-time Apartment Rental Expenses

Either you are downsizing, relocating to another city or just ready to move out of your parent’s home and you’ve realized that saving solely for the apartment deposit and credit check fee isn’t going to allow you to rent that trendy apartment you have been eyeing online. That’s usually because first time renters have concentrated solely on the apartment rental expense and do not realize that there are many first-time costs they haven’t calculated in their apartment search budget. While some items may vary, depending on the city and regional area you have chosen, the following worksheet lists some of the most common up-front costs.

Up-Front Expenses

    Credit Check fee for apartment application $_____

    Deposit for apartment $_____

    Deposit for pets (if any) $_____

    Deposit for electric service $_____

    Deposit for gas service $_____

    Deposit for telephone service $_____

    Installation fee for cable TV or internet service $_____

    First month’s rent on apartment $_____

    Moving Costs $_____

    Total Up-front Expenses $_____

While these up-front costs will cover getting you into the apartment, you will need to also come up with some money to equip your apartment with the furniture, household items and food staples that will make living in your new place possible–especially if the apartment is unfurnished. Sleeping on the floor, eating fast food on paper plates and having no place to sit will get old very fast!

To reduce your expenses, you might want to consider buying used furniture at thrift stores or yard sales or maybe getting a few furniture donations from relatives. If you have the financial resources, then estimate what you will be spending on furniture for each room.

The following worksheet, will help calculate your furnishing costs.

Move-In Expenses

    Furniture for 1 or 2 bedroom apartment $______

    Small kitchen appliances (blender,microwave, etc.) $______

    Dishes, pots and pans, flatware $______

    Household items (bedspread, towels, rugs) $______

    Kitchen paper goods and toiletries $______

    Cleaning supplies (mop, broom, household cleaners) $______

    Food (including first-time staples & condiments) $______

    Total Move-in Expenses $______

You will need to add both totals to get a clear picture of what your expenses will be. Some of those expenses can be spread out over a few months; however, you should be aware of what to expect. If you spend the time planning ahead, it will pay off with a much more realistic picture of what your budget can handle, no “sticker shock” worries and enjoying your new place.

How to Rent an Apartment With a Felony

If you are looking for an apartment, one of the things you can expect is for the management at the leasing office to conduct a credit check and a criminal background check. In the last 10 years, this practice has increased and even become controversial as some apartment offices are accused of downright discriminatory behavior. Nonetheless, the practice of running background checks has become more widespread as technology makes it easier. Today, a leasing office manager need not conduct make any phone call as all the background information on a prospective tenant is easily and readily available online at the touch of a button. If you have a misdemeanor criminal conviction, chances are you may still sail through a criminal background check because most apartment managers are actually looking for felonies and this is where it gets tricky. Can someone with a felony conviction get approved for an apartment?

A felony conviction is deemed much more serious than a misdemeanor and can actually result in a denial of an apartment or other housing where a criminal background check is conducted. There are many kinds of felonies but apartments are mostly concerned with those that involve:

  • Violence
  • Sex
  • Drugs

These three types of felonies are deemed serious enough for an apartment management to deny you housing. But is there hope? If you are currently looking for housing and have a criminal felon y conviction, the first thing you need to do is come clean beforehand. Do not wait for the apartment manager to pull the record but rather, inform him or her of the existence of the record. This can be even more effective when you write, in your own words, the circumstances surrounding the conviction. In many cases, this gesture can cause you to be approved.

Another way to gain approval would be to come with a number of references. These should be people who are reputable in the community, such as the local sheriff or fire Marshall, the local pastor or bishop, elected official or other prominent character. These references should state that they know you and that they attest to the fact that you are now a responsible individuals and the episode that surrounded your conviction is a thing of the past and is not likely to recur.

Finally, if you have a felony conviction, many apartments are willing to overlook it if it something that happened in the distant past. They tend to frown at recent convictions and will be lenient on cases that occurred years ago as long as there has not been any recent incidences.

People with felony convictions can also secure housing by approaching private landlords. While some do conduct criminal background checks, many do not.

Finding Places to Rent an Apartment in Chicago With Bad Credit, a Broken Lease Or a Criminal Felony

Chicago is the third largest metropolitan in the United States and as such attracts thousands of people each day. The city is also a formidable financial center making it a magnet for people seeking economic and career opportunities. Chicago has many different apartments which are excellent for any purpose and for any family size. If you are shopping for an apartment rental in Chicago, it is best to be armed with the necessary information required. One of these is to know your credit score because Chicago apartments will conduct credit and rental history checks not to mention criminal background checks as well. So where can one rent an apartment in Chicago if they have a prior broken lease, less-than-adequate credit or a criminal record?

There are many different localities within Chi-town where this is possible. The following areas have different apartment leasing homes that cater to applicants with an unflattering rental history, tainted credit or criminal past:

  • Downtown Chicago
  • Southside
  • Center City
  • Southwest
  • Bridesburg

One challenge that many people who have a poor rental background or less-than-perfect credit is where to locate apartments that are willing to work with them. This is because many second-chance apartments in Chicago do not advertise that they work with people with imperfect credit. This leaves applicants to guess which can be a costly and frustrating exercise indeed.

Techniques of find bad credit apartments in Chicago

One way to find second chance apartments in Chicago is off course the Internet. This can also be tricky because not all websites are straightforward and apartments rental regulations are constantly being revised.

Another option is to contract an apartment locator. Usually if you tell them what the issue is they can look for an apartment for you which can cater for people with previous issues such as broken lease agreements, bad credit or criminal pasts.

Important information to bear in mind

It is essential that you understand that even if the apartments are willing to work with impaired credit and/or an imperfect record as far as renting, they will still request that you fulfill a few requirements:

  • Have a job for at least six months prior
  • Be earning at least 3 times the rental amount
  • Not be convicted of violent crime or crime against minors
  • If felony, it has to be at least 5 years old

Sometimes the apartments will also require a hefty deposit and may hike their rent. But again these requirements vary from apartment to apartment and locality to locality.

Are you looking for apartments in Chicago which will approve you despite a previous broken apartment lease agreement, sub-prime credit or a criminal record?