The apartment that you rent is your home--you want it to feel as comfortable as possible. If there's tension between you and your landlord, you might dread each interaction you have with them.
How do you build a respectful and healthy relationship with your landlord and neighbors? Being a good tenant is in your best interests; it reduces stress for everyone who's involved. Follow these tips to make your next rental application run smoothly:
When things break, you might be tempted to ignore them for fear of losing your damage deposit. But a broken appliance may lead to further damage, which could cost your landlord more money and take a bigger cut from your security deposit.
If you decide to fix things on your own, make sure you know what you're doing first. Your landlord might not appreciate a DIY fix for a complicated issue--especially if it leads to more problems down the line.
Failing to report an issue may cause problems for your neighbors. As soon as you notice signs of a pest infestation, alert your landlord before it spreads throughout the building.
On the other hand, avoid the urge to over-report any problems. If you're texting your landlord every other day about minor inconveniences, they might begin to ignore your incoming messages.
Every landlord's biggest pet peeve is a tenant who's late to pay the rent. When this happens, they have to spend their time tracking down a bill that should be paid automatically.
If your rent will be late next month, let your landlord know ahead of time. They'll likely be more understanding if you're open and communicative with them about your finances. On the other hand, going radio silent and avoiding your bill will only lead to animosity.
We recommend paying a day or two in advance, just so you don't forget when the rent is due!
Many renters wonder if they really need tenant insurance. The answer is a resounding yes—it's affordable and practically essential.
The benefits of tenant insurance are as follows:
Some landlords won't rent to you unless you register for tenant insurance. For yourself and your landlord, it's best to sign up for a plan that covers the contents of your apartment.
Remember that piece of paper you signed when you moved in? Did you take the time to read through it? If not, you might be breaking the terms of your lease without even knowing it.
For example, pay attention to how much notice you're required to give when moving out. If you surprise your landlord with the news, you might not get a good reference for your next place.
If your landlord starts getting noise complaints from your neighbors, it won't make a good impression. The last thing they want is a disruptive tenant that causes other people to move out. Be respectful to your neighbors—blasting music past midnight won't make you anyone's favorite tenant.
Try not to breach the rules of the residence. Things like sneaking a pet in, throwing parties, or having someone else move in without approval can cause serious problems if your landlord finds out.
Would you feel embarrassed if your landlord saw how your apartment looked right now? You never know when they might need to stop by to check on something or schedule a repair. With that in mind, it's a good idea to keep your apartment clean. It demonstrates that you respect the property you live in.
By treating your apartment with care and paying your rent on time, you can avoid potential conflicts with your landlord. You can secure a good reference at your next rental or continue living happily at your current one.