Are you looking for a new home or apartment to rent? Maybe it’s your very first time renting, or you’re just getting back into the rental game after a long hiatus. Whatever the situation, it’s always good to be prepared for the rental experience. Where do you even start looking? What do you do when you’re ready to sign the lease? We’ll answer these questions in the below tips and tricks for moving into a rental.
1. Don’t Just Pick the First Place You See
One of the most important tips we’ll give you? Evaluate all your options. Look at everything even if it’s not your favorite home or apartment, or even among your top picks. Why? Seeing more options gives you a better view of the market, what you can get for different prices, and also a better perspective on spotting a hot deal.
2. Read the Fine Print
Read everything before you sign the lease agreement. You don’t want to risk losing your deposit because you failed to keep the grass watered or had a guest over for longer than seven consecutive days and got caught (yeah, a lot of rental agreements have clauses about how many nights in a row you can have guests over). Make sure to clarify with your landlord if you have designated parking spots, or if certain areas are not ok to park. If you want to paint the walls, make sure you have your landlord’s approval, since this is another common thing that puts people at risk of getting their deposit back.
3. Don’t Wait to Pack
If you’re signing an agreement and have a set moving date, make sure all your stuff is packed well before then. Remember that as soon as you pay a deposit, you’re paying for the new place, even if you haven’t moved in yet. Don’t waste your money by paying rent at two locations if you can’t afford it (and let’s be honest, most people can’t). Packing early also saves you stress later on, especially if you’re working a full-time job and don’t have a ton of extra time. If you need moving and packing supplies UNITS East Bay has you covered!
4. Be Organized While You Pack
Keeping organized while you pack will make the unpacking process way easier, too. You can organize boxes by room so you can simply move all your packed boxes to the right spots at once (like moving all the boxes that say “kitchen” straight to the kitchen for unpacking). If you can, label each box according to the specific contents, so you know where your plates, silverware, and cups are in case you are looking for something specific. UNITS Moving and Portable Storage can help you organize while with a portable storage container. We offer portable storage in Concord and the entire East Bay Area.
5. Take Turns Moving In
Are you moving in with roommates? It will get hectic if you and your four roommates are all moving in at once. Try to create a move-in schedule so that you take turns loading and unloading your stuff. This means each person can have access to the driveway and garage and there’s no mad rush or competition for space as you move into your separate areas. This is especially important if you’re moving into a second-story apartment and have to climb a set of stairs to get your stuff in since you’ll want to avoid the congestion there.
6. Take Pictures of the Interior
Take the walkthrough portion of the rental agreement seriously. Do a thorough walkthrough and document any scratches, missing paint, holes in the wall, or otherwise. Take pictures of every surface in every room, too, in case your landlord tries to blame you for damages that were already there when you moved in. And don’t just rely on one pair of eyes – have everyone on the lease do a separate walkthrough to make sure nothing is missed.
7. Bring Cleaning Supplies
It’s a good idea to do a thorough cleaning of the carpets, floors, and countertops before you start moving in. This is just a precaution but is especially important if you are moving into a pet-friendly place or have allergies. Cleaning all surfaces also gives you the peace of mind of starting off with a clean slate. You never know in what condition the previous tenants left the place, and even if something looks clean to the naked eye, germs can still be present.
If you want to make moving into a new rental home or apartment consider portable storage as a way to reduce the stress of moving. With UNITS you can pack and load your items at your own pace and we will handle the transportation of your items to your new location. We offer our services all over the Bay Area including portable storage in Newark, CA, portable storage in Albany, CA, and more locations in our service area.