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Questions to Ask When Apartment Shopping

White question mark on blue backgroundShopping for an apartment is like getting into a new relationship. You first ask the basic questions and then delve into the more detailed information. It can feel like you are looking forever until you find the perfect match, but sometimes it can take time. You probably have done lots of research and narrowed it down to a few contenders. However, before you sign the lease and fully commit to a place, here are some of the top questions that you should get answered to ensure a long and successful relationship with your apartment. 

Q1: How do I pay rent?

Whether it is electronically or delivering a handwritten check to the leasing, knowing how to pay rent is one of the most important things to know. At Prospect Hall, you are able to pay with e-checks, credit cards and cash via MoneyGram. You can view and manage your account any time you want online in our ResidentPortal.

Q2: What is the late rent policy?

Most late fees are imposed 5 days after the day rent is supposed to be due. However, this is important information to know depending on how you pay rent because you many need to factor in processing time. We fit the standard as rent is due on the 1stof every month and is considered late at 5pm on the 5th. 5% late fees are applied on the 6th of the month.

Q3: Are utilities included in rent?

Knowing if utilities are included in the cost of rent is essential to budgeting the rest of your finances. It can be the difference of an apartment being affordable for you or not. It should be outlined in the lease and is different for all properties. At Prospect Hall, utilities are not included in rent which can help you budget in other areas.

Q4: What is the parking policy?

Knowing the parking situation when looking at different apartments could ultimately help you make a decision about where to live. While some places include parking in tenants’ rent, others may not offer parking at all which could end with you paying expensive street parking fees. Permits are required at Prospect Hall, even for guests, but it is first come, first serve.

Q5: Do you require renter’s insurance?

Renter’s insurance can be good coverage to have in case anything were to happen and some apartments even require it, like us! We require renters insurance and have a company that you can use or we also recommend that you contact your car insurance company because you can sometimes get a discount by having multiple polices with one provider.

Q6: How are repairs taken care of? What is the procedure for emergency repairs?

Repairs may not occur all the time, but when something does happen, especially emergency repairs, need to be addressed ASAP. No one wants to be stuck without heat in the middle of winter or with a broken water piper on a Saturday night. Some complexes have maintenance available 24/7, while others have a slower response. Whatever the process may be, it is helpful to know this information beforehand so that you are prepared. For non-emergency work orders, we handle them within 48 hours unless a part is needs. For emergency items, these are handled right away and is outlined in our guidelines.

Q7: Can I sublet my apartment?

You never know when your personal or job may cause you to have to get up and move. If this is something that you are concerned about, knowing that you can sublet your apartment on short notice is an especially important question to ask when searching for an apartment. Here at Prospect Hall, we do not allow sublets.

Q8: How far in advance do I need to give notice before moving out?

Some places require a 60 notice of move out, while others only require 30. Before signing a lease, it is important to know this information so that you do not get stuck in an apartment that you did not want to be in for another year. We require a 30-day notice before move out.