Whether you’re a first time renter or a seasoned vet, talking to your landlord can be a difficult thing. Worried about what to say? How about what not to say: check out these examples of potential problem-starters when it comes to discussing difficult apartment-renting topics.
“My pet anaconda is going to LOVE this place.”
Pet policies will differ from property to property, so always make sure you know what you’re getting yourself into before you and your beloved reptilian sign a lease agreement. If you DO have a pet anaconda, you’re probably going to need special permission and/or insurance to cover that. Talk to your landlord about what’s allowed, what’s not, the fees for certain pets, and what it’ll cost to cover damage, should it occur. Asking educated, thoughtful questions and being upfront is the best way to gain a landlord’s trust.
“I’m a budding entrepreneur, so I’m not sure I can commit to paying rent on time. But I’ll always let you know a day before.”
Paying your rent, and paying it on time, is a big deal. If you’re renting from a private owner, this income could be something they rely on each month for their own groceries, mortgage payment, utility bills, etc. Failing to pay your rent on time could also mean a new mark on your credit report. Either way, it’s going to affect things. If you anticipate a problem with a rent payment, give your landlord as much notice as you can. Don’t be afraid to do this – the sooner they know, the better relationship you’ll build with them.
“I may have to duck out of the lease early if mercury goes into retrograde, but I won’t know until it happens.”
The future is unclear for all of us (even if you are aware of mercury going into retrograde), but that’s no excuse to bail from a contract. Before you decide to pack your bags and disappear, read the fine print. Your credit history will suffer, you’ll most likely be charged for the number of months that remain in the lease, and it’s simply not a very nice thing to do in general. Kind of like RSVPing “yes” to your best friend’s birthday party but then not showing up. If you think you’ll need to break your lease early, be upfront and let your landlord know what’s going on. There are a few potential scenarios when it’s acceptable to break your lease, but they’re few and far between. Communicate with your landlord. Don’t leave them in the dark. If the situation can be mended, it’s possible that the both of you can reach an agreement and work things out.
“Not sure that the kitchen will fit 10 kegs, but we can always use the living room.”
Everyone likes to have a good time, but not at the expense of others. Mentioning your aptitude for keg-stands during the apartment tour may get you off to the wrong start with your landlord and even your new neighbors. And speaking of neighbors, if you’re looking to throw parties all the time, it’s wise to make sure that you’re in an area where it won’t cause trouble. Landlords want to know you’re going to take care of the apartment or condo, and neighbors want to know you’re going to respect their peace and quiet. Even more important, you could get fined by the city if things get too out of control. Wise up on your neighborhood and always be courteous of the people that live around you.
“I’m pretty clumsy when it comes to breaking things, so I’ll just keep your number on speed dial.”
Your landlord is not your plumber, but they are responsible for figuring out how to fix things when they break. When signing your lease, go over everything that’s covered and everything that’s not, as well as the easiest form of communication. If it’s not an emergency, wait until a proper time to let them know; you shouldn’t be calling at 4 AM for a broken door stop. Unless it’s a door stop gushing water and flooding your apartment, in which case, it’s an emergency (and a flood!).
However you choose to handle situations that arise, the most important thing is to be as transparent as possible. Your landlord and your conscience will thank you! Are you ready to move into a new apartment? Find your next apartment home on ApartmentSearch.com.