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Helpful Tips from Zara Realty: Renting an Apartment? What to Expect

Be prepared to provide information for a background check, including previous addresses, bank account numbers, and Social Security number. Often, apartment management companies request personal and professional references.

Read the apartment lease agreement carefully before signing. Utilities such as garbage, water, and electricity are sometimes, but not always, included in the rent. The lease should include the monthly rent and due date; any deposits for pets, cleaning, or damage; length of the lease, requirements for termination, and fees for moving out early. The lease should also outline procedures for maintenance requests, guest policies, and acceptable number of occupants. Reading through the document carefully can prevent unexpected surprises. If you have questions or concerns, do not be afraid to ask.

Walk through the apartment with the manager. Make a detailed list of any problems, not limited to cracked plaster, leaky faucets, nonworking appliances, missing light fixtures, sticky drawers or windows, or stained carpets. Ask the manager to sign the list and be sure to keep a copy; doing so ensures that you will not be charged for these repairs at move-out time.

Pay your rent by check, especially the first month. Note the address and apartment number on the check. If you must pay by cash, make sure you get a detailed receipt.

Zara Realty specializes in spacious, amenity-rich homes. From the company’s main office on Jamaica, New York’s Hillside Ave., Zara Luxury Apartments and Homes provides residents of the Jamaica area of Long Island with a wide selection of convenient, comfortable apartment options.