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    What to Know for First Time Apartment Renters

    October 4, 2021 at 1:03 pm · · Comments Off on What to Know for First Time Apartment Renters

    What to Know for First Time Apartment Renters

    Finally, you’ve decided to move out of your parent’s house, or maybe leave your dorm room days behind, in search of your very own apartment. It’s exciting, right?

    With that said, one question keeps ringing in your head, what next?

    Just the fact that you’re doing something for the first time is enough to raise your blood pressure.

    When you realize that all responsibilities that come with moving out to an apartment for the first time suddenly fall on you, it is easy to feel completely and utterly overwhelmed.

    Luckily, you’re not alone in this challenging endeavor. Many people went through the same quest and overcame what, to you, now seems like a nightmare.

    To make the transition as smooth as possible, we put together a checklist, along with everything you need to know about how to rent your first apartment for a successful move.

    What to Know for First Time Apartment Renters

    Becoming a first time apartment renter is a big step in life, perhaps even the most exciting time in your life.

    security deposit - month's rent

    Even though renting an apartment for the first time comes with a set of responsibilities, you get to enjoy the freedom to pick and choose the perfect place for you.

    Apartments have their fair share of challenges. For example, as a first time apartment renter, you might have to deal with unreasonable landlords or neighbors, high rents, poor quality, pet policies, and much more.

    It’s one of those parts of life that no one prepares you for, but luckily reading other’s experiences will give you a glimpse of what to expect.

    Now, where do you start? Let’s find out!

    Tips for First Time Apartment Renters

    Why is an apartment such a good option?

    First of all, you’re on your own. It makes no sense to rent a house.

    A house comes with a much bigger responsibility than an apartment. If renting an apartment can be overwhelming, renting a home can be much worse.

    The difference in maintenance and utility cost are just some things that position apartment renting as the ideal choice for a first time renter.

    Here is a list of the most important things to look for when renting an apartment for the first time.

    Determine Your Budget

    It is easy to overestimate how much you can spend on rent, and other necessities, as a first time renter. Bottom line is, figure out the rent you can afford.

    The general recommendation is to spend about 30% of your gross monthly income (before taxes) on rent. If you earn $5,000 per month, your rent should be $5,000 x 0.3, or about $1,500.

    This will help you manage your finances and avoid defaulting on your rent. However, this isn’t always the case in cities like New York, Boston, or San Francisco. Often, these cities have a high cost of living.

    A regular apartment within your budget, could double or triple in San Francisco, New York, and Boston. As such, aim to keep your housing expenses to 30% or under.

    A wise thing to do is to team up with a roommate to offset apartment costs. This will ease the burden and give you room to focus on other important stuff.

    Perhaps, using a rent calculator will give you a better idea of how much you can spend on the apartment for rent.

    All you need to do is fill in your desired location, number of rooms, and your monthly gross income, and the rent calculator will do the rest.

    Decide if You Need a Roommate

    With a tight budget, it can be overwhelming to rent an apartment on your own. With that said, things can be easier if you have a roommate to share the cost with and save money.

    If the housing expenses run over the recommended 30%, consider finding a stellar roommate. However, before jumping to find one, consider the pros and cons of having a roommate. If you’re satisfied with the decision, go ahead and search for one.

    Before settling for a roommate, it is essential to establish what makes a compatible roommate.

    Here are some ideas on how to go about it:

    • Do you care if a roommate comes with a pet? Will you need a pet-friendly apartment?
    • How long can guests stay, and how often?
    • Whose name will the utilities be in, and how will you collect payment from the other?
    • Who will buy the furniture, and who will take it with them if someone moves out?

    While you will want to focus on yourself, it is crucial to find out what makes your roommate happy, and what doesn’t. That will go a long way to striking a long-term friendship of understanding.

    Choose Your Apartment Community

    Choosing your apartment community is probably one of the most important things as a first time apartment renter.

    first apartment first time apartment renters

    Your apartment complex location will affect so many things. For example, it will determine how much you will spend on transportation to and from work.

    Here are few tips to consider when choosing your apartment community;

    • Pick a location that is close to your workplace
    • Consider the distance to shopping centers, recreational places, among other things
    • Is the place safe for you? What’s the crime rate in the neighborhood?
    • Is your dream location more expensive than surrounding neighborhoods?
    • Are you going to use public transportation?

    Asking for recommendations will also go a long way to helping you find the perfect neighborhood. You also want a place where you can access public transportation easily.

    Think About Amenities

    When searching for an apartment, as a first time renter, you may believe that your search criteria will initially boil down to the number of bedrooms and monthly rent. Well, that’s not all.

    When you are on an apartment hunt, prioritize the amenities that are most relevant to your lifestyle. Consider what will make your apartment more pleasant, and what isn’t worth the extra rent money or facility fees. These are things you need to worry about.

    If you love working out, a gym in the building would be a significant asset to you. If that’s not your thing, but a weekend swim is, a rooftop swimming pool would be far more appealing.

    Apart from the shared amenities, think about the amenities you want inside the apartment. An updated kitchen, outdoor space, like a balcony, oversized bathroom off the master bedroom, and large closet space are all worthwhile amenities to consider.

    Give Yourself Time to Search

    Apartment hunting is not a walk in the park. Give yourself time to find the perfect apartment. If you’re in a hurry, you’ll be a potential victim of a leasing scam.

    Many ask: how long does it take before finding a suitable apartment?

    Well, there’s no exact answer to that question. You can spend a day and spot an apartment that has everything you need. Love at first sight!

    You could also take days, weeks, or even months before finding what you are looking for. In other words, how long it takes depends on your set of preferences, among other factors.

    If you are planning a move to a new city and don’t have time to make a trip to apartment hunt in person, worry not! Nowadays, renting an apartment sight unseen is entirely possible, thanks to virtual 3D tours.

    Know How to Spot Apartment Leasing Scams

    An estimated 43.1 percent of renters have encountered a listing they suspected was fraudulent, and 5.2 million U.S. renters have lost money from leasing fraud.

    Statistics suggest that first time apartment renters are more likely to experience leasing fraud, with 9.1 percent of 18 to 29-year old renters having lost money on a leasing scam, compared to 6.4 percent of all other renters.

    An estimated 88.3 percent of renters who have lost money from leasing fraud changed their search approach for rentals. For example, some conduct additional research, and others make sure to visit properties before paying.

    You need to worry about leasing scams. Always be on the lookout to avoid falling victim to leasing fraud.

    Budget for All Upfront Costs

    A first time apartment renter doesn’t always realize the full scope of all upfront costs. For this reason, you will want to budget ahead of time.

    Typically, you’ll need a security deposit, first and last months’ rent, and an apartment application fee.

    For the apartment application, landlords often charge an application fee so they can run a background and credit check on you.

    If you have a pet, then consider budgeting for that as well. Most apartments will ask for a one-time upfront fee, plus a monthly pet leasing fee.

    It is important always to read the pet policy so you get the full scope of the apartment regulations. For example, how many pets are accepted?

    Utility Cost and Other Expenses

    Paying a security deposit, along with first and last month’s rent, is not the end of the cost. Consider other expenses, such as pet rent, utilities, parking, repairs, and new furniture.

    Utility bills can vary, based on location and the season. You should also factor in any subscriptions, the cost of transportation or gas, food, gym memberships, and any other ongoing expenses.

    Your goal is to find an apartment for rent with utilities included, at the best prices.

    Space and Storage

    Most apartments have less space than family houses. As such, you need to get creative in order to get all of your stuff stored neatly.

    Utilize all the nooks, get a bed with drawers, and consider a minimalist design. Minimalism in apartments is trending. Getting so much from so little is incredibly satisfying.

    Not only will your open-floor apartment look modern and stylish, but it will cleverly camouflage your storage.

    Renters Insurance

    Sometimes the unthinkable happens! Suppose it does and you didn’t have a plan, you’re likely to be in big trouble.

    For this reason, it is essential to have renters insurance. It’s a lifesaver.

    With a tenant’s insurance policy, you will not worry about your belongings should the worst happen.

    In some apartments, this renter’s insurance may come as a requirement. If so, you need to budget for insurance as well to avoid surprises.

    What Landlord Will Look For

    Landlords often conduct a thorough screening process to establish the right tenant to rent their apartment.

    apartment complex

    Expect to be asked things like employment history, rental history, credit check, and so on.

    On top of the list will be rent payment. A property manager wants to be sure that prospects can comfortably afford the rent, 100%.

    • Why do they have to ask all of these even though you have money to jump straight in?

    Renting an apartment is a business; they will want to get the best candidate with minimal risk.

    • What does a tenant with minimal risk mean?

    Everyone has a unique financial situation. Some people may be recovering from bankruptcy, while others may be repairing a bad bill that plummeted their score.

    A bad credit score often indicates the tenant is at high risk, and are likely to default their monthly rent. That said, the landlord will typically choose the tenant with a high credit score, since they paint a picture of an individual with great financial management skills.

    • What score do you need to rent an apartment?

    Generally, you need a good credit score if you want to rent an apartment. A higher score will boost your chances of getting accepted by the property managers.

    As a first time renter, you may not have a credit history. If this is the case, now what?

    How to Convince Your Potential Landlord to Rent an Apartment

    You’re not the only one looking for an apartment. As such, you need to put together a good submission that will convince the property manager you’re the right candidate.

    Here are things you will want to include in your rental application:

    Highlight Your Income

    If you’re earning three, four, or five times the leasing fee, this is the right place to flex it. The property manager will be more at ease if they know your rent payment will be nothing to worry about, having proved a higher income.

    As such, you will stand a chance of getting the apartment. You may even want to offer to pay two or three months rent in advance, if you can.

    If your income is not that convincing, you will want to find other alternatives. Let’s on to the next!

    Include a Co-signer in Your Application

    A co-signer is someone who will assume your leasing responsibility in the event you’re unable to pay.

    As a first time renter, using a co-signer will boost your chances of getting that apartment.

    A Roommate May Boost Your Chances

    A property manager will be more likely to approve your application if you have a roommate to share the leasing expenses.

    Include Plenty of References

    Many landlords are meticulous when it comes to tenants screening. They go as far as hiring external agencies to screen potential tenants. As such, it is essential to include credible references.

    The previous landlord will be one of the best references to include in the application. However, since you’re a first time renter, you should not have one. As such, you will want to use your friends and bosses who can vouch for you.

    renters insurance - rental history

    A credible reference will go towards helping get that apartment as soon as possible.

    When is the Right Time to Look for an Apartment?

    Ideally, you should begin to look for an apartment 30 to 60 days before you plan to move. For example, if you want to move in February, the best time to start your apartment search is December or January.

    You want to give yourself enough time to find an apartment, while still searching at the most strategic time.

    What is the Best Month to Look for an Apartment?

    You want to search for an apartment during months when leasing rates are at their lowest.

    The lowest leasing rates are usually found between October and April, particularly after the December holiday season.

    During this period, fewer people are interested in moving. For instance, the weather’s bad, schools are in session, and so on; so moving out is not preferable for many people during this time.

    Individuals renting between December and March typically find the best leasing bargains.

    Besides, it’s easy to move during warm weather. It’s less stressful loading and unloading boxes and furniture when it is nice out.

    Renting an Apartment During the Winter Months

    Moving during winter might give you a better chance to find an apartment at its lowest rate, since not so many people are moving. With that said, have you considered the drawbacks of moving during this time?

    From Thanksgiving to New Year’s Eve, it’s no secret that you’ll be busy chasing down all the delicacies, spending time with your loved ones, and, most probably, visiting their homes.

    Finding time to move during winter time can prove difficult.

    That said, you will want to think about pushing your move until February, when things have died down a bit.

    There will be pros and cons to every season; as such, do your research and establish the best time for you.

    You could still compare leasing rates, within the location you want, during any season. It’s one way to find the best apartment while minding costs.

    What You Need to Know About the Leasing Agreement

    Signing a lease is the last stage before moving into your apartment.

    As a first time apartment renter, expect to receive a bunch of documents for signing. Whatever you get from the property manager as a signing agreement can be classified as a leasing agreement.

    So, what is a lease or rental agreement?

    Here’s everything you need to know about leasing agreements:

    What is a Rental Agreement?

    A rental agreement is a contract between the renter and the property manager. It clarifies responsibilities and terms over a set time period.

    Both tenants and landlords should protect themselves with a legally binding lease that obligates each party to set terms.

    Sometimes the landlords can be casual and easy-going. However, a handshake or word of mouth is not a leasing agreement.

    security deposit - month's rent - first apartment first time apartment renters

    What’s the Purpose of the Leasing Agreement

    A leasing agreement is a binding document that protects both the tenant and the landlord. It outlines the responsibilities of each party.

    Here are some examples of responsibilities by each party:


     Providing safe living conditions

    • Pest control
    • Major repairs


    • Payment dates
    • Penalties for breaking the leasing agreement
    • Responsibility for specific damage to the apartment

    Before signing and renting your first apartment, you should have a clear picture of your responsibilities and the landlords.

    If you feel unsatisfied with some clauses of the lease, ask questions to clarify from the property manager or landlord.

    Whether you’re a first time apartment renter or an experienced renter, reading and understanding all clauses of the agreement are necessary. Anything in the contract can be used in legal settings or when resolving disputes.

    What’s the Difference Between a Lease Agreement and a Rental Agreement?

    Many people use lease and rental agreements interchangeably. It may sound the same, but the meaning is different.

    The main difference between the two lies in the length of the agreement.

    Leases are a long-term, contractually binding agreement. They’re typically six months or 12 months, but they may be even longer.

    The lease agreement has its perks and drawbacks. For example, once you sign a lease agreement, a landlord can’t decide to suddenly raise your rent or decide you can’t have a pet after all.

    Among the drawbacks, as a renter, are that you can’t just up and move without paying the penalty. In this case, the landlord will recoup some money.

    If you’re looking for a month-to-month lease, you should probably sign a rental agreement. A standard leasing agreement can also be changed every month, as the landlord sees fit.

    With a month-to-month lease, you’ll have the flexibility to move whenever you want, at the end of the month. However, the rental agreement also gives the landlord the window to raise the rental fee.

    Even though the leasing agreement gives you the freedom to move at the end of the month, it’s still necessary to give notice. Typically, a 30-day notice is required from either party in case of any changes (moving out, changing lease terms, etc.).

    Unlike a lease, a rental agreement usually renews automatically at the end of 30 days.

    Things to Look for in Your Leasing Agreement

    Lease agreements can vary, based on the apartment. However, there are some key things that you might want to look out for.

    Here are some of the things to check out:

    Lease Length and Monthly Rent

    The monthly rent and lease length are some of the most critical pieces of information in an agreement.

    You will want to find the part that provides some guidance on how to break a leasing agreement. It’s normal to find a job elsewhere while in the middle of a lease term.

    If you think you may need to move suddenly, for any reason, a month-to-month leasing agreement may be a better choice.

    Security Deposit Details

    A security deposit is mandatory, and such information is found in the lease. It is your first apartment, but there will come a day you will need to move out again.

    With that said, it is wise to find information that offers guidance on how to get your security deposit back.

    Read about the circumstances when the deposit becomes non-refundable.

    Pet Policy

    As an animal lover, finding a pet-friendly environment can be challenging at times. Even though the new apartment accepts pets, reading their pet policy is wise so you familiarize yourself with it.

    Find out about the pet rent and pet deposit as well.


    When leasing your first apartment, you need to get everything right with the utilities.

    Your leasing agreement will outline all the utilities you’re responsible for, along with which utilities the property manager will take care of.

    Final Thought

    Renting your first apartment comes with a lot of responsibilities. It’s only fair to say you need adequate preparation to have a smooth transition.

    From figuring out the location, to how much rent to pay, to logistics, and the leasing agreement, you need to be aware of everything before making that final step of signing the contract.

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    What is a Security Deposit for an Apartment?

    September 13, 2021 at 1:53 pm · · Comments Off on What is a Security Deposit for an Apartment?

    What is a Security Deposit for an Apartment?

    There are different payments and fees that you may be aware of relating to apartment renting. These can include payments for utilities, rent, or even sometimes parking space.

    With that said, there is one major expenditure that you might not be aware of, and that’s a security deposit.

    How much is a security deposit, and what is it? What is the payment used for, and when are you required to pay it? Here, we’ll answer all of the questions you have relating to the security deposit.

    What is a Security Deposit for an Apartment?

    A security deposit involves money that a tenant pays a landlord before moving into a rental unit. It acts as a form of insurance for the owners or property managers to protect their apartments from damage by tenants.

    Security Deposit for an Apartment

    Even though the security deposit amount varies per property or state, it’s equal to the monthly rent in most cases.

    The property manager or landlord holds the security payments for the period of the lease. After the lease expires, the tenant returns the money in full after the apartment inspection meets the standards. This can only happen if you have paid your last month’s rent in full.

    If some fees or damages need covering, that amount will be deducted from the security payment.

    Let’s consider more information about the security deposit:

    Where is the Security Deposit Paid?

    You normally pay the security deposit to either the property manager or landlord before you’re allowed to move-in. In most cases, tenants must pay the security payment together with their first month’s rent, and any other move-in costs.

    Depending on the regulations of the location, you can pay your payment by cash, money order, electronic (ACH) payment, or check.

    How Much is a Security Deposit?

    The security deposit is typically equal to one to two month’s worth of rent, depending on the state laws and the criteria of the community.

    For instance, if your one months rent is $500 and the landlord requires a one months rent deposit, you should deposit a security payment of $500.

    Your credit score can also determine the payment that you put down. A low credit score will usually require a higher security deposit amount, while a higher credit score might translate into a low-security deposit required.

    Other factors determining the amount of the security deposit include state laws, local market rates, rental quality & type, and rental application (employment history, criminal records, landlord verification, etc.).

    Why Landlords Collect Security Deposits

    Even though not all property managers or landlords collect a security deposit, it’s standard practice.

    Landlords collect deposits as financial security to protect their apartments from damage by tenants. Below are some things that security deposits would cover, if your property owner requires them:

    Property Protection

    Accidents normally occur during the course of the lease. For instance, you might bang up the drywall or scuff the floor. Since such things result from the tenant’s fault, the repairs are typically paid for from the security deposit.

    Knowing that their deposits are at stake if they damage any part of the apartment or house should make the tenants more careful in avoiding these damages.

    Financial Protection

    The security deposit is also used to cover rent or fees that haven’t been paid after the lease elapses. For instance, if you haven’t paid your last month’s rent by the time your lease expires, the money will be subtracted from the security payment.

    Pet Protection

    If you own a pet in your apartment, the property owner may require that you make deposits for them. This payment will cover any itemized list of damages that the pet is at fault for, such as tearing of carpets or defecating in the unit. Some landlords even charge pet rent on top of the deposits.

    What Does the Property Owner Do with the Security Deposit?

    The property owner will do nothing with the payments unless something needs to be covered by it. The money is kept in a bank account separate from the landlord’s business bank account during the lease period.

    Security deposits might, therefore, accumulate some interest at times. In some states, the property owner retains the interest, while in others the tenant is entitled to the earnings from the interest. This is something that you must confirm with your landlord before you sign the lease.

    Under What Conditions can Landlords Deduct Money from the Security Deposit?

    Since a deposit is a protective measure, there are certain situations under which your landlord may deduct money from it.

    When Damages Happen Beyond Normal Wear and Tear

    Wear and tear are considered normal things that the property owner should fix, free of charge, when they occur. However, there are abnormal damages that might become the tenant’s responsibility to fix. The cost of fixing such damages could come from your deposit.

    In most states, provisions are in place to prevent the landlord from deducting unnecessary and unreasonable fees from the deposit. For instance, the landlord can’t withhold the deposit to pay for things that the renter didn’t wreck in the state of California.

    You Owe Unpaid Fees or Rent

    If you owe your landlord unpaid rent or late fees at the end of the lease, this money owed can be deducted from the deposit.

    The property owner can also deduct money from the payment if you break your lease without giving adequate notice. You should, therefore, avoid breaking your lease unless it’s absolutely necessary.

    You Leave the Apartment in Worst Condition than You Found It

    The property owner is allowed to deduct money from your deposit if you leave your apartment unit a mess after vacating. This is because they might be required to hire a cleaning service to clean up the unit.

    It’s, therefore, a wise idea to clean your unit before moving out. Ensure that the unit is as clean as you found it when you moved in.

    How Long Does it Take to Get My Security Deposit Back?

    The time it takes for you to get your deposit back varies from state to state. However, in most cases, you’ll get your deposit back between 30 to 60 days after the lease expires and you’ve moved out.

    Since you’ll receive the deposit back in the form of a check by mail, you should notify the landlord of your new forwarding address to guarantee prompt delivery.

    What if You Don’t Receive Your Security Deposit Back?

    If you don’t receive your full payment back, it might be because your property manager had to make deductions. However, if you disagree with the deductions, there are actions that you need to take.

    First, you can write a letter to your landlord explaining why you deserve the full payment. Ensure you keep a copy of the dispute letter.

    If you fail to reach a satisfactory agreement with your landlord, file a lawsuit in a small claims court. You can also consider approaching a professional mediator.

    Alternatives to Security Deposits

    There are several efficient and cost-effective alternatives to the deposit:

    Lease Insurance

    Landlords and property managers are now exploring lease insurance options, such as LeaseLock, to do away with security deposits from apartment proceedings.

    Here, the landlord or tenant pays a small fee of at least $19 each month for coverage against hundreds and thousands of dollars in property damage.


    Instead of charging tenants a large amount of money as a deposit, landlords opt for billing tenants for damages on a case-by-case basis.

    Here, the landlord isn’t allowed to overcharge tenants, and they can only charge up to the maximum amount allowed for a traditional deposit.

    Surety Bonds

    Surety bonds will allow you to pay only a small percentage of the security bond to the property manager or landlord. They are facilitated through third-party bonding and management companies.

    Since the bonding companies guarantee that tenants will abide by the bond terms, landlords can accept small deposits.

    Do Security Deposit Laws Change by State?

    Security deposits vary from one state to another. Some states don’t have statutory limits, meaning they don’t specify what a property manager can charge for a deposit.

    With that said, other states have a cap limit to what a property manager or landlord can charge. There are also strict laws concerning when the deposits have to be returned to the tenants.

    Final Verdict

    The security deposit is the best way available to protect the interest and property of the landlord. If you abide by the lease terms and leave nothing damaged, you’ll get your payment back without question.

    You can also opt for other options that offer similar benefits to a security deposit, at an affordable cost.

    If your landlord or property manager refuses to return your security deposit, there are legal avenues that you can explore.

    Always do your best to ensure that you get your security deposit back when you move out of an apartment.

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    Cass Lake Shore Club Apartments vs. Cass Lake Front Apartments

    August 30, 2021 at 12:21 pm · · Comments Off on Cass Lake Shore Club Apartments vs. Cass Lake Front Apartments

    Cass Lake Shore Club Apartments vs. Cass Lake Front Apartments

    If you are one of the people that enjoy lake living, Cass Lake Shore Club Apartments will be a considerable attraction for you. Cass Lake is the largest lake in all of Oakland County, Michigan, and boasts beautiful scenery.

    The lake for which the city of Cass Lake is named was called Red Cedar Lake, after the trees growing on Cedar Island.

    The name was later changed to Cass Lake in honor of the Governor of the Territory of Michigan, who traveled to this area in 1818 and named the lake the Mississippi River source.

    Cass Lake Shore Club

    Cass Lake Shore Club Apartments is located at 3530 Denise Ct, Waterford, MI 48328. This apartment community was built in 1975 and has three stories, with a total of 565 units.

    If you have ever been to the Apartment Club, Cass Lake Shore Club area, you’ll agree that the apartments stand out, in almost every aspect, from the rest.

    When it comes to pricing, the apartments in Cass Lake Shore Club are affordable. For instance, expect to pay a monthly rent of about $740-$1,240, on average. Meaning Shore Club Apartments, Cass Lake units are below the national average.

    Cass Lake Shore Club offers different floor plans. There are four floor plan options, ranging from 1 to 2 Bedrooms. So, decide on the type of floor plan you want before searching for an apartment.

    You can visit or call the leasing office to get more details on the floor plan options. It is incredibly important to know floor plan details before selecting and moving into a unit.

    Some of the features you will like at Cass Lake Shore Club Apartments include boat docks available, Cass Lake access, large balconies, and more.

    Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of Cass lake Shore vs. Cass Lake Front Apartments’ community living.

    The Pros of Living in Cass Lake Shore Club Apartments

    The Cass Lake Shore Club Apartments provide many benefits for its residents. Shore Club Apartments has boat dock rentals, classic Michigan ambiance, and it just may be one of the county’s best kept secrets.

    Let’s take a look at some of the perks of living in Cass Lake Shore Club Apartments:

    ●      Lakefront Living

    ●      Availability of Amenities

    ●      Strategic Location

    ●      Maintenance Free Life

    Lakefront Living

    While everyone has their taste in the style of living, we can all agree that the lakefront view has a unique flavor and attraction.

    The beauty of lakefront living is worth every penny you pay to your landlord. Apart from the incredible view you get for living in such a place; it also offers a serene and relaxing setting.

    Many of us are drawn to the water, finding peace and pleasure in tranquil lakes, flowing rivers, and ocean waves. Simply put, being near water makes us happier. As such, it boosts the physical and mental health of our bodies.

    With stress and anxiety on the rise, we’re starting to wake up to how beneficial nature can be for our mental health.

    Even looking at photos of green spaces can help lower stress levels. With that said, even beyond the tranquility of trees and fields, further analysis shows that natural blue spaces bring us more pleasure than natural green spaces.

    Availability of Amenities

    Amenities are just one of the many items that will be on your list when looking for an apartment, right?

    Hallway Apartment

    Let’s be honest, if you don’t know what to look for when renting an apartment, you could be forking over your hard-earned money for the bare minimum — as such, paying rent will be painful if you don’t feel like you’re getting your money’s worth.

    The Cass Lake Club Community provides amenities to improve residents’ quality of life. On-site amenities will usually offer a convenience that saves you time, money, or even both.

    There are select units at the Shore Club Apartments that let you enjoy washer/dryer hookups, relax in a swimming pool, and work out in a fitness center.

    Apart from the amenities, the management promotes community living. They regularly organize social events where you can meet and mingle with your neighbors while enjoying some good entertainment.

    You can also enjoy storage units, washer/dryer connections, trees, and green grass.

    Strategic Location

    We all want to live in a strategic location where we can access all the essential amenities without overspending. Living in Cass Lake Shore Club Apartments gives you exactly that.

    In Cass Lake Shore Club Apartments, you’re close enough to quality schools. As such, schooling won’t be a concern when you decide to settle at Cass Lake Shore Club Apartments.

    You’ll find quality schools around the 3530 Denise Ct., Waterford, MI 48328 location. For example, Oakland Community College, Baker College of Auburn Hills, and Roosevelt Elementary School are very nearby, just to mention a few.

    When it comes to transportation, it’s pretty easy since roads are well designed for cars or bikes. The fact that it’s an open place makes it easier to see the Cass Lake sign for directions. For example, you’ll see a lake sign: Cass Lake Shore Club pointing to where the lake is.

    Apart from being in a perfect location that is minutes from everything you need, and amenities that speak to its livability, boat dock space is available to rent, and select apartments have washer/dryer hookups.

    Maintenance Free Life

    Not just Shore Club Apartments, but generally, choosing apartments for renting over buying homes give you one benefit, a maintenance-free life. You’ll never have to worry about maintenance during your stay.

    Apartment Rooms

    If anything goes wrong, all you need is to let the professional staff at Shore Club Apartments know of it, and you’ll get taken care of.

    Technically, if you buy a home, you’ll have to consider the maintenance cost that could run hundreds of dollars every month. Primarily, the bigger the house, the more likely to pay more for maintenance.

    Besides, property taxes will be knocking at your door.

    Unique Features of Cass Lake Shore Club Apartments

    • Boat Docks available
    • Cass Lake Access
    • Large Balconies
    • Lots of trees and green grass to enjoy
    • Storage Units
    • Washer/Dryer connections in select units

    Community Features of Shore Club

    • Laundry Facilities
    • Maintenance on-site
    • Site Renters Insurance Program
    • Storage Space
    • Sundeck
    • Lake Access
    • Boat Docks
    • Fitness Center
    • Pool

    If you want to join Shore Club, let the staff give you a personal tour, call today. It’s crucial to note that the Shore Clubs’ website doesn’t reflect actual availability, please contact community directly to get more details.

    The Cons of Living in Cass Lake Shore Club Apartments

    Even though Shore Club Apartments, located at 3530 Denise Ct, Waterford, MI 48328, offers great perks for its residents, the community has some drawbacks.

    Apartment Window

    Here are some of the cons of living in this community:

    Pet Restrictions

    If you love pets, you’re likely to find it hard a little in Shore Club Apartments. For example, Shore Club has a pet policy limit of two. If you have a dog, then the maximum allowed number is two, and so on.

    The community also reserves the right to reject your pet for any reason. Sometimes that can be harsh for someone that shares a close relationship with a pet. Simply inseparable!

    Here is the breakdown of the policy in the Shore Club Apartment.

    You’ll also be required to pay a pet fee every month.

    Pet Policy for Dogs

    All dog owners must provide proof of Breed and Immunization Records from a licensed veterinarian. Please contact the leasing office for a complete description of the policy.

    • $50 Monthly Pet Rent
    • $200 Fee
    • 50 lb. Weight Limit
    • 2 Pet Limit

    Pet Policy for Cats

    Two pet limit. $200 pet fee. $20 monthly pet rent, breed restrictions apply, call the leasing office for a full description of the pet policy. They will also give you a personal tour, call today!

    • $50 Monthly Pet Rent
    • $200 Fee
    • 25 lb. Weight Limit
    • 2 Pet Limit

    Maintenance is a must

    If you’ve got a boat or a dock, both will need to be properly maintained to keep them in tip-top shape. Of course, you can utilize the dock and keep your boat safely stored at the Shore Club.

    The Pros of Living in Cass Front Apartments

    Cass Lake Front Apartments is an apartment complex in Keego Harbor, Michigan, that offers luxury apartments for rent at affordable prices.

    Living in Cass Front Apartments

    If you’re looking for an apartment for rent, look no further than the Cass Lake Front Apartments complex.

    ●      Affordable Housing

    ●      Pet-Friendly

    ●      Easy Access to Amenities

    ●      Luxury Apartments

    ●      Community Amenities

    Affordable Housing

    Typically, renting an apartment is cheaper than buying a house. For instance, homes go for $365,000 to $2,200,000, at an average of $360 per sq. ft.

    Cass Lake Front Apartments, on the other hand, are affordable as far as pricing is concerned. For example, One-bedroom units here go for about $825, while two-bedroom units go for about $1,000. This is way below the national average.

    Affordable apartment housing

    Here, you will find a 750-950 sq. ft. apartment in Keego Harbor, in zip code 48320. For instance, you can find 1-Bedroom – Cass Lake Front Apartments Size: 750 sq. ft. Rent: $825/mo., or  2 Beds/1 Bath, 950 sq. ft. at $950/mo.


    Unlike Shore Club Apartments, these apartments offer a pet-friendly environment for its residents.

    If you love pets, this community is created just for that. Whether you have multiple pets or a large dog, this is the place for you. Dog waste stations are located everywhere in the community.

    You can contact the leasing office for more details on the pet policy.

    Easy Access to Amenities

    You’ll be a few minutes from the vibrant downtown area when you live in these apartments.

    You’ll have easy access to art galleries, boutiques, restaurants, and museums. The apartments are also just 10 minutes from I-75, and five minutes from US-24.

    On top of all of that, you’ll have access to recreational sports and hiking activities. There are parks to frequent, such as Webb Park and Sunset Park, very nearby.

    The lake is perched between Keego Harbor, West Bloomfield Township, Waterford Township, and Orchard Lake Village. This makes living at these apartments incredibly convenient since you can easily access any of the four towns.

    Luxury Apartments

    If you want a taste of luxury, then you’re in the right place. Cass Lake Front Apartments are designed with the taste of luxury in mind.

    For example, each unit boasts high-end appliances, a pub-style granite countertop, a walk-in closet, and modern and contemporary cabinetry.

    Luxury Apartments

    One downside of apartment living always has to do with space. Everyone wants to have a spacious room.

    You’ll also be surprised to find out that these apartments are incredibly spacious.

    Community Amenities

    These apartments work towards making your life stress-free with the availability of several community amenities to save both time and money, as well.

    For example, the on-site laundry facilities, covered carport parking, and comfortable outdoor areas will make your life worth living, within this community.

    If you have more household items, then storage units are available to keep them, and help keep your unit bulk-free. Renting storage units closer will also help you access your items easier than storing them a distance away from your community.

    When it comes to maintenance, the management at these apartments has 24/7 on-call maintenance support that will take care of your needs, whenever problems may arise.

    The Cons of Living in Cass Lake Front Apartments

    Even though this apartment community is a great place, there are some drawbacks associated with it, compared to Shore Club Apartments.

    Here are some of the drawbacks:

    Higher Pet Fees

    While you’ll pay a $200 pet fee for both dogs and cats in Shore Club Apartments, at Cass Lake Apartments, you’ll fork out a non-refundable pet fee of $250 for pets under 30 lbs, and a $500 non-refundable fee for dogs over 30 lbs.

    Cost of Living in Keego Harbor

    Keego Harbor has grocery prices that are 4% higher than the national average. Therefore, you’re likely to spend more on groceries in Keego Harbor than in other cities in the United States.

    Step-by-Step Guide Through the Rental Application Process

    You’ll go through a series of processes before your new landlord accepts you into the community. No matter if it’s an apartment for rent or mobile homes for rent, the procedure may differ a little, but the basics remain the same throughout.

    Here is a guide through the process of the rental application process:

    1.     Fill out a rental application

    2.     Pay the apartment application fee

    3.     Expect credit and background checks

    4.     Prove you can pay rent

    5.     Figure out if you need a co-signer

    6.     Show them that you are an agreeable renter

    7.     Sign the lease

    Fill out a rental application

    After you find the property you like to lease, the next step is to reach out to the property manager on-site by filling out a rental application.

    It’s best to have the necessary information readily available when you take the first steps to rent an apartment.

    A typical rental application requires the following information:

    • Photo ID
    • Name
    • Address
    • Phone Number(s)
    • Email
    • Employment and Income Information
    • Previous Address
    • Pets (if applicable)
    • Emergency Contacts
    • Background Information
    • Landlord References
    • Personal or Professional References

    Pay the apartment application fee

    Most apartments will require you to pay an application fee. Often, the application fee funds the credit and background checks that are done on potential renters. It essentially covers the screening cost of the applicant.

    For easy understanding, it’s essential to ask your future property manager about all of the applicable fees associated with the application process for the property you’re interested in.

    Expect credit and background checks

    It’s nearly impossible for you to skip the background check step. Every apartment community wants its residents to be safe, and, therefore, such rules are enforced as safety measures.

    The management may go as far back in the past as a landlord deems necessary, and they will usually focus on criminal history.

    They will also check your credit history to establish how financially responsible a potential tenant is.

    It’s important to mention if you have bad credit or are still recovering from past medical bills.

    Prove you can pay rent

    Just because there’s a vacancy doesn’t mean the management wants to fill it with just anyone available. Every community wants a tenant that’s able to pay their bills without confrontations.

    The most important part of the application process is to provide proof of employment or income.

    You may also be asked to provide recent bank statements, copies of client contracts, or copies of one or two W-2 forms, if need be.

    Figure out if you need a cosigner

    It’s crucial to figure out if you need a cosigner. A cosigner is a person, with good credit, who acts as a willing guarantor.

    Usually, this happens if you have bad credit, they take the legal responsibility of paying your rent in case you won’t.

    Either way, having a cosigner might strengthen your application and improve your chances of approval.

    Show them that you are an agreeable renter

    Most landlords will want to know what type of tenant you are. As such, they may ask you to provide the contact details of your previous landlord as part of the screening process.

    agreeable renter

    Although typically not required, you might want to think about attaching a landlord reference to the application as another way to improve your chances of approval or simply to set yourself apart from other applicants.

    Have good personal references

    Good personal references will make a significant impression on your new landlord, especially if you don’t have much of a rental history.

    Personal references may come from a friend or colleague who knows you and can attest to your integrity.

    Even though the application process might seem like a lot of work, it’s all worth it in the end.

    If everything goes well, the final step will be to sign the lease agreement.

    Sign the lease

    Once your application is accepted, and you’ve decided on the floor plan, inspected the premises, checked for parking space, made a quick note of the neighbors, and went through your checklist of essential things you must do before you commit to a new apartment, you may proceed to sign the lease.

    Ask all about the upfront costs like the security deposit and any additional fees. Most landlords will ask for the equivalent of one one and a half months’ rent for a security deposit if you fall back on rent payments, so bring a bank check and ask for receipts.


    Cass Lake Shore Club Apartments at 3530 Denise Ct, Waterford, MI 48328 has a classic Michigan ambiance.

    Before searching for an apartment for rent, it’s crucial to know the sq. ft. of the unit you want. Do you want a 750 sq. ft. or 950 sq. ft. apartment?

    Based on the above pros and cons, we can ultimately conclude that Cass Lake Front Apartments is the better option.

    Cass Lake Shore Club Apartments

    Lastly, if you’re looking for lakefront living, boat dock rentals and a nice place to call home, the Cass Lake area is the right place for you and your loved ones.

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    The Best Cass Lake Apartments in Michigan

    December 23, 2020 at 5:02 am · · Comments Off on The Best Cass Lake Apartments in Michigan

    The Best Cass Lake Apartments in Michigan

    Cass Lake is a popular freshwater lake named after Governor Lewis Cass. The lake is perched between Keego Harbor, West Bloomfield Township, Waterford Township and Orchard Lake Village. This makes living around Cass Lake incredibly convenient since you can access any of the four towns at ease.

    Living around the lake is also pure bliss thanks to the beautiful, serene environment, and the array of recreational activities you can indulge in. But to enjoy a full-fledged experience, you need a place to call home. This is why we listed the top Cass Lake apartments in Michigan.

    Cass Lake Apartments

    If you want to live around Cass Lake in Keego Harbor, here are your best apartment options:

    Cass Lake Front Apartments

    Always dreamt of living a few meters away from a water body? Then Cass Lake Front Apartments in Keego Harbor are a sure way to turn your dreams into reality. As the name implies, these apartments are located just a short walk from the lake and a few minutes away from downtown Keego Harbor.

    When you move in here, you don’t just get to enjoy a serene environment, but also spectacular lakefront views, available Cass Lake access and convenience since you can go in and out of Keego Harbor as you please, all while at the same time enjoying the luxury of everything it has to offer.

    It’s location isn’t the only great thing about these apartments. The apartment block features one and two bedroom apartments with modern finishes guaranteed to deliver the utmost in comfort. All apartments feature stunning granite countertops, hardwood flooring, airy and spa-like bathrooms, walk-in closets, air conditioning unit and a foyer with regular security check for safety purposes. You can check or see online tour options for more info about the rooms.

    The one bedroom apartment of Cass Lake Apartments offer you 750 sq ft. of space and feature a spacious living room, with a modern kitchen and a breakfast nook. The two bedroom apartment units offer you similar features, but with more space since you get up to 950 sq ft. of living space. Part of the package also includes onsite maintenance, modern laundry facilities and package services.

    The apartment blocks are designed to promote community living, because other than the community amenities like the recreational area, the management regularly organizes social events where you can meet and mingle with your neighbors while enjoying some good entertainment.

    If you have a pooch, then even better for you because the apartment feature some pretty pet-friendly policies. Add in the serene environment and walks by the lake, and apartment living with your furry best friend has never been more luxurious.

    Elizabeth Lake Estates

    Elizabeth Lake Estates is yet another excellent choice if you are looking to rent the best apartments in an apartment community with high regards to safety and security check. These apartments are located in Waterford, Michigan, just a few minutes from M-59 and I-75 routes, and a stone throw away from the lake in Keego Harbor itself. Thanks to the convenient location, you get to enjoy easy access to the lake, as well as restaurants and other amenities you may need in Waterford. Elizabeth Lake Estates has one to three bedroom air conditioned and cable ready apartments with a private balcony and modern finishes, such as plush carpeting and large closets. Tenants also get a fully-equipped kitchen with a dishwasher, refrigerator and additional storage.

    Notable communal amenities include a swimming pool, a basketball and tennis court, a barbeque area, a sundeck, a rec room and covered parking. They also get onsite management at all times. Generally, Elizabeth Lake Estates are an excellent place to live, but note, you may have to give Fido away, because pets are not allowed here.

    Whispering Woods

    Whispering Woods Apartments are also located in Waterford, Michigan. They may not be as close to Cass Lake as other apartments on our list, but they are a short drive away. They feature one and two bedroom apartments for senior and family living, and additional two and three bedroom townhouses.

    Whispering Woods Apartments apartment community is also near other recreational areas and popular lakes. Amenities include a barbeque area, a recreation room, laundry room, on-site maintenance and elevator access.

    Please note, amenities vary based on your chosen floor plan. If you have a pet, it’s wise if you consult with management first since breed restrictions apply, plus you have to put down a $300 pet deposit.

    Moving to Cass Lake? Here are Tips to Make it Easier

    Moving, be it across Michigan or from another state to Michigan, can be really hectic. Finding the right apartment with good security check and measure is a step in the right direction, but it’s not enough. So, while the above Cass Lake apartment recommendations will make your journey easier, keep the following tips in mind to help making the move to Cass Lake a tad easier:

    Create a Moving Checklist

    Finding the best apartment is just the first of the many steps you will have to take while moving here. To ensure you don’t forget any essential steps and to keep your move organized, create a moving checklist.

    Include tasks you want to complete before moving day, such as finding professional movers and sending out notices to your landlord and utility companies.

    Create this checklist at least two months prior to your move so you can handle each task one day at a time. This will help keep you grounded, and at the same time ensure the move is fast and painless.

    Determine If You Need a Professional Mover

    Professional movers make moving a walk in the park. They handle everything from packing, unpacking and even arranging your new home. That said, their cost can push to the four digits, and if you are not careful you may end up with an unprofessional mover.

    Weigh the pros and cons of hiring a mover in your situation to determine if you need one. If you indeed need one, obtain quotes from at least three companies so you can ensure you end up with the best, most professional moving company for your endeavour.

    Color Code and Label Your Moving Boxes

    Boxes make moving seamless, but they can also turn your experience into a nightmare if you don’t know what items went where. So days before you move, color code your moving box to make unpacking easier and organized.

    Donate, but Save the Receipts!

    You don’t want to carry items you no longer use to your new Cass Lake apartment, as this will end up being clutter. So, identify things you no longer use, which could be anything from clothes, appliances or even décor items, and donate them to charity. Make sure to get and save donation receipts, since these can help you save a few bucks during tax season.

    Moving Day

    On the moving day, stock a cooler, with easy snacks and beverages, to keep you going. This is especially essential if you are moving from another town or state. Ensure it’s in your car and not the moving truck. It will be especially beneficial if you have kids and/or pets.


    The kitchen is the most intensive room to unpack and organize, and the sooner you start, the better! Plus, with a fully-functional kitchen, you can stop and have a snack, or prepare a meal for your friends, family or movers, and then continue unpacking later while you are fully rested and energetic.

    Welcome to Cass Lake, Michigan

    The place isn’t just beautiful, it is conveniently located too. So, whether you are moving here for business or as a retirement plan, you’re guaranteed to enjoy living here. There’s always something fun to do and life here is affordable too. Any of the apartments above are guaranteed to make your experience here even more enjoyable.

    Cass Lake Front Apartments, to be precise, is a particularly excellent choice due to their convenient lakefront location, modern-features and a handful of community amenities that make your life here easier.

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    Tips For Getting Your Keego Harbor Apartments Ready For Winter

    November 2, 2020 at 1:35 pm · · Comments Off on Tips For Getting Your Keego Harbor Apartments Ready For Winter

    Tips For Getting Your Keego Harbor Apartments Ready For Winter

    If you have recently moved into your Keego Harbor apartment, you may have been so busy enjoying your lakefront views and agreeable weather that you almost forgot that winter is coming. Moreover, though apartment living is affordable and comes with ample amenities, winterizing your apartment home tends to be a little different in each place you live. For instance, if you are living in an affordable contemporary luxury lakefront apartment, then it may get a little colder since you are closer to the water. It is little things like this that you must keep in mind when you are winterizing your apartment. That said, there are still a few standard tips for getting your Keego Harbor apartment ready for winter that are applicable across the board.

    Switch Out Your Bedding

    One of the simplest things you can do to ensure that you stay toasty this winter in your Keego Harbor apartment is to switch out your bedding. Just ask any home decor obsessed individual or Michigander, and they will tell you that switching out your bedding in accordance with the seasons is just good housekeeping. Thus, if you were using lighter sheets or cotton based bedding, now is the perfect time to look for something a little more heavy/thicker, like flannel sheets and plush blankets.

    Purchase an Electric Blanket

    Along those same lines, there is no shame in investing in an electric blanket during the wintertime. Not only do electric blankets keep you extra warm on cold winter nights, but they are also lifesavers in the event that your heat goes out. Thus, you have more than one reason to invest in a toasty electric blanket. That said, you should definitely do your research before you purchase these particular blankets, and if you are using an electric blanket that you have had for more than 15 years, then it is time to invest in a new one. Ultimately, research is important here because you want to make sure that you are not buying a potential fire hazard.

    Check Your Windows

    In addition to keeping yourself warm and toasty in your bed, you should also check your windows in your apartment home. It should be no surprise that windows can easily let cold air into your apartment if they are not properly sealed or if, for instance, you have an air conditioner unit in one of your windows. Consequently, it is important to make sure that if you feel a draft coming from any of your windows that you address it. Likewise, if you have an extremely drafty apartment, for some reason, then you should consider investing in draft stoppers or film kits for your windows.

    Install Insulated Curtains

    Yet another quick and easy way to winterize your apartment home is to upgrade your curtains or blinds. Purchasing insulated or heavy-duty blackout curtains can reduce the amount of heat that is escaping your apartment. Moreover, these particular types of curtains essentially add a second or additional layer of insulation. Thus, if you have drafty windows or patio/balcony doors, you can opt for insulated curtains instead of purchasing draft stoppers or film kits. Alternatively, if you want to buy all of the things mentioned above, then you can make your apartment home that much warmer.

    Check For Holes And Cracks In The Walls, Floors and Ceilings

    When winterizing your apartment home, it is important to also seal off any holes or cracks in the walls that could be allowing your heat to escape. Besides checking for holes and cracks, you should pay extra attention to your floors and ceilings.

    If you notice any damages, you should inform the maintenance staff as soon as possible so they can be fixed. Furthermore, while inspecting your floors, if you notice that your first level or ground floor hardwood and vinyl floors run a little cold, then you may want to invest in some rugs. That said, you can also look into nonhazardous space heaters for particularly cold areas in your apartment home.

    Test Out Your Heating Systems

    Another valuable tip for preparing your apartment home for winter is to test out your heating systems. It is important to know now before the weather gets bad that all systems are a go. In the event that everything is not fine, it is better to find out about it now rather than later. Plus, the sooner you know, the sooner your landlord or property manager can assess the situation and repair it. Remember, as much as you love your new electric blanket, you do not want to pull it out just yet, so if you notice any issues with your heating or cooling systems, schedule maintenance to come now before the snow hits.

    Invest in Portable Space Heaters and Humidifiers

    As briefly suggested, portable space heaters and air humidifiers are your friends. In the cold winter months, the air can be dry, especially inside your apartment home. Thus, in order to add a little moisture back into the atmosphere and make your home comfy, you should invest in a humidifier. Similarly, space heaters can add an extra boost when you need it. Moreover, it is often a lot cheaper to plug in a fan, a heater, or a humidifier, then it is to turn on your heat at full blast.

    Buy Some Indoor Plants

    Investing in some indoor house plants is also another way to prep your apartment home for winter. As you are likely aware, winter can be a little depressing at times, and indoor house plants have been shown to improve air quality in your apartment home, boost your mood and add a little color to an otherwise bleak winter day. That said, if indoor house plants have a tendency to die on you, there is no need to be ashamed. You can buy some artificial plants instead, which are just as aesthetically pleasing.

    Stock Up on Winter Essentials

    Living in an apartment may lull you into a false sense of security when it comes to stocking up on winter essentials. However, just because you do not need to shovel the driveway or salt the walkway does not mean you cannot benefit from having key winter items. So, get yourself a shovel, even if it is for your car, and stock up on some salt while you are at it. Other handy winter essentials include gloves, hats, hot cocoa or calming teas and really anything else that will make wintertime a little easier to deal with.

    Find Other Ways to Stay Warm

    Lastly, keeping your apartment home nice and toasty is important, of course, but you should also look for other ways to stay warm in addition to pulling out the flannel bedding and turning on the space heaters. For instance, you should consider purchasing a few seasonal candles, getting cozy with a plush throw blanket and wintertime pillows and wearing those crazy footed pajamas—we promise not to tell anyone.

    Take Away

    Ultimately, there are a variety of things you can do this winter to keep yourself and your apartment home nice and toasty. So, get out your winterizing checklist and get to work. Once you are done, you can relax with a good book and curl up by the fire (or space heater). That said, if you would like to know more about winterizing your apartment home, then do not hesitate to contact your apartment community management team–they are usually full of ideas when it comes to making your apartment stay better.

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    Your Apartment Lease: Everything You Need To Know

    September 28, 2020 at 2:04 pm · · Comments Off on Your Apartment Lease: Everything You Need To Know

    Your Apartment Lease: Everything You Need To Know

    Moving into an apartment involves more than unpacking boxes and putting down a deposit. In fact, there are a few other particulars that need to be addressed prior to moving in. For instance, your apartment lease needs to be thoroughly read and signed. That said, many people are in such a hurry to settle into their new apartment home that they do not take the time to go over their rental agreement as they should. If you have been guilty of this in the past, it is understandable, but moving forward, here is everything you need to know and understand about your apartment lease.

    Landlord Contact Info

    Clearly, one of the most important things you need to know and should be able to locate in your lease is your landlord/property manager’s contact information. For starters, you may need this information to inform your landlord of potential problems/maintenance issues, to confirm rent collection dates, or to discuss unexpected economic hardships. That being said, overall this information should be clearly listed on your rental agreement. Remember, you are entering into a contract with your landlord/property management company, and therefore their information should be a part of your lease.

    Break Lease Clause

    Yet another crucial component to your rental agreement or contract is the break lease clause. Typically, a rental agreement or an apartment lease will have a clause that covers what will happen in the event you do or wish to break your lease. This section of your rental agreement affords your landlord protection and will explain what damages or fees you will have to pay if you do end up breaking your lease at some point.

    Buyout Clauses

    Likewise, your rental agreement may have a buyout clause (similar to a break lease clause). In this instance, if you need to move out early, then you will likely have to give 60 days’ notice and pay a two months lease break fee. Since you cannot predict the future, you should always be apprised of the terms and stipulations for ending your early lease termination.

    Repairs On Your Rental

    Along those same lines, you should know what your lease says about repairs on your rental or apartment home. Here, the good news is that most well-maintained apartment complexes have a maintenance staff, and they are responsible for major repairs on your rental. That said, you should still know what this particular section of your lease says.

    Property Maintenance

    Similarly, your rental agreement should cover property maintenance. This area of your lease, generally, explains what kind of regular upkeep you are responsible for. For example, this section may require that tenants keep the common areas free from trash, replace their smoke alarms, and so on. Here is where you will likely find your complex’s trash removal policy and procedures as well.

    Are Pets Allowed?

    While perusing your lease, make sure you pay extra attention to your complex’s pet policy. Even if you currently do not have any pets, you never know what the future holds. That said, if you do have a family pet or plan on getting one soon, then you need to see if you are required to pay an extra deposit, pet rent, or a cleaning fee once your lease is over. Also, you definitely need to go over what pets are allowed. Some apartment complexes allow only two pets, only cats, or dogs under a certain size.

    Automatic Lease Renewal

    Whether or not your lease will automatically be renewed varies. Often, it depends on the city or state you are looking to rent in. Obviously, if you do not want to renew your lease automatically, then you should discuss this with your landlord. Most apartment communities in the area, however, tend to inform you that your lease is up in advance. If you wish to continue renting your apartment home, then you will need to stop by the rental office, at some point, to sign a new lease agreement.

    Additional Fees Associated with the Rent

    Your lease agreement should also cover any additional fees (late rent fees, carport fees, etc.), and what costs are associated with a month-to-month lease if available. It is always a good idea to thoroughly read this section for budget reasons, so there are no surprises later on.

    Homeowners Association

    Every now and then, you may stumble across an apartment community that has a homeowners association (HOA). For instance, if your new apartment complex has high-end amenities or luxurious perks, then you might be subject to HOA fees, plus additional rules and regulations. Thus, if you happen to stumble upon an apartment community with an HOA, then your lease will have all the particulars laid out for you.

    Renter’s Insurance

    Additionally, certain landlords will require tenants to obtain renter’s insurance. So, make sure you know where you stand on this issue. Even if your lease does not require renter’s insurance, it is still highly recommended. Having all your belongings insured can save you a lot of money in the event of a fire or a break-in. Therefore, do yourself a favor and get insurance. Some policies will cost you less than $12 a month, so it is more than worth it.

    Are Utilities Included?

    Another important section of the lease that you should familiarize yourself with is the included utilities section. Your landlord will clearly lay out which utilities are included in the rent as well as what you are expected to cover. More often than not, apartment homes come with water, and trash removal included. Things like heat/air, gas, and electricity, you will likely be responsible for paying each month. The same is true for your internet. Apartment communities may offer Wi-Fi in the common areas/clubhouse, but the majority of apartment complexes require their tenants to pay for their own access.

    Alterations to the Rental Property

    You should know what your lease states in regard to making alterations to your apartment home. Usually, this portion of the lease will tell you that you can paint your walls, as long as you paint them white again before you leave. That said, every apartment community allows different things, and some do not allow tenants to make any changes. So, if you have plans to turn your second bedroom into a walk-in closet with all the trimmings/fixtures, then take a peek at your lease’s approved alterations list first.

    Key Change

    Lastly, your rental agreement should inform you of what to do if you have lost your key. Here, in this section, responsibility for lost keys and who is paying to get the locks changed should be explained in depth. Furthermore, this section of your rental agreement should also go over lockout procedures and protocols. Most apartment complexes will allow you a minimum of one lockout before they charge you, while others may charge you for an after-hours lockout only. Plus, you may need to have your debit card handy when you get locked out. Of course, you will not know for sure until you review this portion of your lease.

    Final Note

    As you can see, there is a lot of pertinent information in your rental agreement or lease. Therefore, it is in your best interest to know what you are agreeing to when you sign. If you still need assistance going over your lease or need a professional opinion regarding a few questions, then you should consider speaking with an attorney that handles landlord-tenant law. Ultimately, an attorney will be able to advise you of your rights as a tenant.

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