Your guide to apartment Hunting
Looking for an apartment can be very stressful! Especially when it's your first apartment or when you're not sure what questions to ask. In this blog were going to cover 13 questions you should ask to ensure your new apartment checks all your boxes.
How much is rent?
You may think this is an obvious question, but it's the most important! Here at the Pavilion at the Groves, our base rent prices start at $1,155 and vary depending on floor level, location, amenities in your unit, and size. Of course, each complex is going to have a different way they advertise their prices but more than likely these prices are going to change based off of floor level, amenities, vacancy, lease term, or even fluctuate daily.
What utilities are included?
After you've established what the base rent price is, the next thing to ask is "What are the monthly charges added on to the rent?". Of course, each apartment is going to have a different answer since they provide different amenities, and if water is added, how it's metered will change the price.
Typically, most apartments will be able to give you the average cost of utilities in the unit you're moving into, but it's important to remember these prices are subject to change based on your own usage.
For utilities that aren't included, make sure to ask who services in the area and schedule ahead of time for them to set up on your move in date.
During your tour, we will go over each monthly "Amenity" charge as well as utility cost. Water and gas will automatically be added to your rent on the 1st of every month.
Before you move in, we will give you flyers of our preferred electricity and internet providers however you are welcome to choose any providers you prefer that service our area
How do I pay rent?
Once you understand what you're responsible for and what will be added on to the rent, it's good to know when, how, and where you'll be paying your rent. Again, each apartment is different so knowing when to pay rent, can you pay the rent online or does it have to be a check, and if it's online, what website is it on?
The main way most people will pay their rent at our community is through Active building however, we do take personal checks and money orders as well
How is the parking?
I would say this is a pretty important question, knowing if your complex has a parking policy or regular towing can be a deal breaker for some. Are there designated visitor spots? Do they have any carports and garages than can be reserved and how much do they cost? The last thing anyone wants, is to move into their new apartment and then hike a mile to get to their unit... Especially with groceries.
All of our uncovered parking is first come first serve for the residents, visitor parking is marked with signs. If you prefer a reserved spot, we do have carports and detached garages for rent. Some of our floor plans also come with attached garages!
What is the pet policy?
If you have a fluffy friend, apartment hunting can be a little more challenging. First thing you want to ask is if the complex is pet- friendly. If it is, ask for their pet policies. Most apartments will have breed restrictions, weight restrictions, and an animal limit.
Next thing you'll want to know is how much is the deposit. Each apartment is going to have their own fees and most likely will be due at move in accompanied with a monthly pet rent.
*Bonus* if they have amenities like backyards and a dog park!
We are a pet friendly community!
What is the Guest Policy?
Most apartments won't have an issue with having visitors but there may be some rules on how long they can stay, where they can park, and if they can be in the amenities. Each complex will have their own set of rules but it's important to ask and go over it in your lease agreement.
Can I make changes to my apartment?
Being in your own space is fun and most people are going to want to make it their own. Be sure to ask your apartment if you can make changes to your apartment like paint, removable wallpaper, hanging pictures, etc.
Most complexes won't have an issue as long as holes and paint are fixed at the time of move out. If they aren't, you may end up with a big bill after you move out.
How do maintenance requests work?
You never know when you're going to need maintenance to come to your apartment, whether it's for an emergency or a lightbulb changed.
Most apartments will have a place to submit service requests online, however if it's after hours and you have an emergency, it's good to know if maintenance is on call and how to reach them.
Be sure to also ask what the turnaround time on maintenance repairs is.
Location, Location, Location!
If you're new in town or not familiar with the area, it's a good idea to ask about the location of your apartment! Are there any grocery stores nearby? How about shopping centers and restaurants? Have kiddos or you're a teacher, what schools are you zoned to? Maybe you travel a lot, how far is it from the airport?
Being in close proximity with your lifestyle is a must for some people! The last thing you want to do is move into your new apartment and realize you have to drive across town to get to the grocery store.
The application Process
Once you've decided if you've found the right apartment for you, you'll want to know about the application process, what approval looks like and are there any associated fees. Keep in mind that apartments go fast so you'll want to make a decision pretty quickly.
What are the Requirements
Every apartment is going to have their own set requirements, some more strict than others. It's a good idea to ask ahead of time what the requirements. If you don't meet one of the requirements, ask if they do approvals with conditions or if you could get a cosigner. Most of the time if you get denied and paid an app and admin fee, you won't receive it back. It's good to know before you apply so that you won't lose your money.
What is the App and Admin fee?
Most apartments are going to have an application and administration fee. Be sure to ask if it's per person and if it's refundable.
Some apartments will also have their own approval process, so if you're in a hurry, make sure to ask how long it typically takes to get the approval and if there's any documents, they need upfront, so that you can get them ready and speed up the process.
After the Approval
Congratulations! You've been approved... now what?
Your apartment should follow up with you about everything you will need for move in, be sure to ask them the timeline of uploading all your documents (proof of insurance, electricity, etc...) and when you should expect your lease agreement.
Finding an apartment is not hard but finding one that fits your needs and lifestyle, can be. Asking these questions can really help narrow down the list and put you in a home that you love.
Interested in our community and need more details? Give us a call or go to our contact page and send us a message! We're happy to help.