Deciding where to live is a big deal. There are a lot of things to take into consideration. You have to think about yourself, your family, the size of your family, what all their specifications are, what you would like out of a house, if you have any pets or are going to get any, as well as so many other factors. If you are looking to at condos for sale or or even luxury condos for sale, it makes it a lot easier because as long as you are in accordance with the HOA then you can pretty much make all the decisions yourself. But, if you are planning on renting condos, there are a few things that you should ask before signing any kind of contract.
- Do you allow pets?
This is a big one because many homes do not. Some homes will allow pets but only certain kinds or under a certain size, etc. At times, any pet will be allowed but a move in fee will be assessed and often, certain perimeters in case the pet destroys the carpet or any part of the home while living there. If you are willing to take 100% responsibility for anything that happens regarding your pet while living in the condos, then the landlord will probably be a lot more open to allowing the pet to move in. Even though cats shed less and take care of themselves better, many owners are adverse to them because of how they scratch. Dogs do not scratch but tend to make more of a mess.
- Are we paying the HOA fee?
Often times there will be a homeowners association affiliated with a condo complex and you should find out if you are responsible for paying the HOA fee. Generally, the owner is responsible for this fee, but you should still ask because if it is not paid, there are certain amenities that will be taken away and some consequence to the residents. If the owner does except his or her residents to pay the fee, the best way to go about that is to ask for the fee to be worked in to the rent so you can pay it all to the same place at the same time and then the owner can send it on the HOA. That is usually acceptable to an owner.
- Does the rent change in these condos?
Many complexes have a fixed rate amount but if the condos are privately owned, the rent may go up year by year, especially if the HOA fee rises. If you plan to live in the condos for a number of years it would be good to prepare yourself first, to find out if you are going to have to adjust your budget every year to continue to live there. You also will want to make sure that the amount that rent rises is worth the condo that you are living in. If the owner is not willing to do any kind of renovations and upgrades, there should be no reason that the rent should rise. However, if he or she is good about fixing and repairing when needed, the more repairs that are needed, the more inclined they might be to raise the rent.
- What utilities are included?
Some condos include water and gas and trash in the rent and you will only be responsible for electricity and if you choose to have internet or cable. However, some leave the residents entirely responsible for all utilities. You will have to talk to the owner or landlord and find out what exactly is included and what you will need to pay for, yourself. Finding a condo where some utilities are included may sound ideal, but generally speaking, those condos have a higher rent amount to cover it. You can more easily control your bills if you are the ones paying for everything. Then you can use less water or gas and bring your monthly payment down.
Finding out the answers to these simple questions is important so that you can get a better idea of what you are moving into. Knowing beforehand about these few things is crucial to your decision making process.