Why Researching Landlords Is a Lot Like Waiting in Line at the DMV

Patience, Daniel-San; Mr. Miyagi will teach you how to be a real estate guru. You said it best there! It’s all about patience. Paint the car, paint the house, paint the fence! Are you kidding me? It’s true, though; you have to be patient, thorough, and complete with your investigation of rental properties and apartment complexes, researching landlords to the hilt until you know what their favorite colors are! This isn’t a joke. This is the real deal.

Why Is Researching Landlords so Important?

For one thing, you’ll need a few items to ensure you’re following legal protocol and compliance. Landlord-tenant law’s very particular about a lot, so researching landlords will ensure you’re on the ball. Here’s a quick list:

  • Identificationlandlord real estate paperwork
  • Proof of Employment and Income
  • a Copy of Your Credit Report

That’s not to say you may face a landlord that’ll completely shut you out if you’re missing just one of these. This is where it’s not completely like the DMV, out of luck in renewing your driver’s license without a birth certificate, for example. These documents, though, will certainly help fast-track you toward signing your new lease on the day you view the property. This is crucial.

Why? Consider the tight rental market, for one thing. Real estate prices can get scary, right? All that searching for the right rental home even with all the updated rental tips you can get your hands on will amount to nothing, because your timeline for getting into some property runs dry, and you’re left to still searching. It’s smart to be as prepared as possible before even approaching a landlord.

While researching landlords, too, don’t forget to bring all sorts of supporting documentation regarding repairs, pre-emptives for move-in inspections and other forms. You not only go through the process a lot faster — but a lot smoother.

Take a Number

Trust me. You’ll thank me for it. All that time and effort reviewing and researching landlords left and right might be a hassle at the moment, but you can rest assured: it’ll pay off in the end. As in you’ll be living in a rental that’s kept well, maintained, and you’ll have your landlord wrapped around your fingers.

Why It’s Probably a Good Idea to Have a Real Estate Attorney

Think about how this might be relevant to you. You’re dealing with a landlord, for crying out loud! Ask a room full of fifty home renters if they ever had just one problem with their landlord, and chances are at least 50% of them will raise their hands. Maybe this is why homeowners sleep a lot after having coped with rentals in the past….

Seriously, Though — You Need That Real Estate Attorney on Your Side

It goes without saying that the lease, essentially a real estate contract, will have specific lingo that youreal estate law might want a specialist — a real estate attorney — to basically translate for you. Know the fine print. Understand the terms of your security deposit — and especially if its kosher legally, yet another reason why it’s smart to have a real estate attorney look it over.

Because this is basically contractual law, you have to stipulate that you get everything in writing. If you don’t, legally that landlord can do whatever he or she wants regardless of what the real estate attorney can do for you. Therefore, take note: if a landlord promises something to you (and every real estate attorney will tell you this) get it in writing. Period.

It’s important to discuss matters with your real estate attorney in the event that your privacy’s violated. Case in point: if the landlord or maintenance staff enters your rental beyond what’s stated in your rental agreement stipulating guidelines, you can safely say that it’s a sure bet your privacy rights have been infringed upon. Discuss that with your real estate attorney immediately. You then just might have a case in court for compensation.

Every Tenant Has Rights

It’s common to say that the landlord’s the ‘boss.’ That’s not true. In many ways, the tenant’s more of the boss. In truth, though, both the landlord and tenant are partners in agreement to maintain a business relationship. You pay rent; the landlord maintains the property for you. Plain and simple. Out of all rental tips, this has to be the simplest.

Just to ensure the relationship’s maintained well, you never know: that real estate attorney just might come in handy! For more answers to your questions, though, FEEL FREE TO CONTACT THE H.O.P.E. PROGRAM RIGHT NOW about rent-to-own homes in your area.

Who Gets to Fix the Faucet: Tenant or Landlord?

This can be as confusing as the Edward Nygma with the riddles, and if I were Batman, I’d get some ground rules down on what guidelines to follow in spite of the many situations you could be involved in with a landlord, property management company, or apartment complex. Get some rental tips together and make sure you’re prepared — because Batman’s always prepared.

How a Superhero Would Get a Faucet Fixedreal estate Batman

Basic rule of thumb: your landlord has one expectation to fulfill: a habitable environment for the tenant (in this case Batman, who has a bat cave with minimal plumbing, it seems). A habitable environment is defined specifically as a dwelling providing adequate heat, water and electricity. It has to be safe. So in the case of a leaky faucet, you then ask the ultimate question: will the tenant or landlord fix the problem? Good question….

Batman would just do it on his own, but here’s the thing: by law, landlords are required to repair or replace items that have been damaged through normal wear and tear. That simply means if the faucet started leaking over time, chances are the question of tenant or landlord is answered by the latter. If the tenant broke the faucet, however — tenant or landlord? You guessed it: tenant.

The Question of Tenant or Landlord Not Entirely Black or White

You can tell automatically that the question of tenant or landlord isn’t necessarily an easy question to answer, because any situation regardless of real estate trends for 2015 — debatable even in a court of law — can have differing viewpoints. Perspectives. Opinions. It can get pretty confusing.

This is why, in fact, it’s important that you have this all set up, written out, and agreed upon immediately even before you sign a lease. That way whenever anyone asks the question of tenant or landlord as far as repair and replacement are concerned, the answer’s pretty easy — as easy as Batman beating the pulp out of the Joker.

Yes, Your Landlord Is an Actual Human Being and Not the Terminator

It’s sad that everyone thinks of a landlord as that cybernetic killer, preying on the innocent and taking your money. Your landlord is not the Terminator, people. Arnold Schwarzenegger would retch at the thought. In truth, your landlord’s probably one of the most harmless mammals known to man, and if you really get to know your landlord well, that mammal might actually be adorable! (Not really)

The Unfortunate Stigma of Your Landlord

This does contribute to the negative connotation simply because we don’t like to address concerns with landlords. Your landlord just might evict you — shudder at the thought! Bear this in mind, please: if it real estate terminatorwasn’t for you, the tenant, your landlord wouldn’t have a shred of revenue come in! Your landlord needs you.

Additionally, by law, your landlord has a responsibility to you — to the well-being of the dwelling as far as maintenance and safety are concerned — which means his or her first priority is to ensure that all your needs are met. Rental tips for the up-and-coming home renter never saw this coming as positive as it is: you can talk to your landlord about your problems, and he or she will address them immediately.

Just be upfront and honest. If you’re having trouble paying this month’s rent, bring it up immediately. Don’t hide. Don’t give your landlord a reason to start banging on your door.

If you’re getting really sick of hearing that faucet drip, be honest: let your landlord know. It’s his/her job to get it fixed. By law, it’s a requirement.

Communication Is the Key to Success as a First-Time Renter

I’d venture to say that your landlord probably appreciates it. Honesty, openness, laid-back. The reverse is the same for landlords far and wide. They won’t normal tenants on their books, people. Not crazy people. So when they’re facing the decision of signing a rental agreement for a rent-to-own home with the H.O.P.E. Program and a particular tenant, it’s clear that the decision has to be a sound one.

You ensure your landlord’s confidence in the best way — by always being a tremendous communicator. Even during Judgment Day.

 

The Crucial Importance of Renters Insurance

You may heard of renters insurance but wonder why on God’s green Earth would you ever need it. Who knows — you may not need it at all. After all, you technically don’t own anything in the home except for your typical belongings: perhaps a TV, some clothes, a phone, and maybe a few other things. It’s not like you can’t have any policies already for such things, but believe me — renters insurance is a real thing for tenants, and not only can it be a smart option for you (if you have high-priced items in your place, such as a laptop or computer), but your lease might actually require that you obtain it.

You Would Then Need to Consult With an Insurance Company About Renters Insurance

See what your options are. In the end, you’ll be thanking the fates for the decision you made, perhaps surviving a very nasty fire in your rent-to-own home from H.O.P.E. to Own, and having all your personal belongings reimbursed — all because you were smart enough to take out a policy for renters insurance!real estate fire

It’s particularly imperative that you do consider renters insurance, because your landlord’s policy won’t cover any of those damages. The only damages he or she would be covered on would be any of the included appliances and the structure itself. Basic rule of thumb: if you bring it into the home or apartment, chances are your landlord’s insurance policy won’t cover it at all.

Protect Your Own Property

And it’s affordable, just so you know. So out of all the rental tips you get to apply, this one won’t cost you a fortune. You can expect perhaps approximately $350 annually, covering a total of $50K in reimbursements for your stuff. That’s a pretty good deal in my opinion. Take advantage of it.

Why You Should Ask Questions Before Painting Your Rent-to-Own Home

This rule you’ll read about out of all the rental tips you’ll pick up does happen to be very particular. By particular, I mean involving a landlord who will immediately throw a temper tantrum over the fact that you, the tenant, thought it would be a good idea to have your daughter paint a flower on the beautiful white drywall! Be careful here. Even if you’re in a rent-to-own home from the H.O.P.E. Program, you’re limited on what you can do as far as renovations and improvements are concerned (at least until you sign off on a lease and own the home with a mortgage).

Think About It: You Don’t Actually Own That Rent-to-Own Home (Yet)real estate paint

Therefore, by law, you can’t make any improvements on your rent-to-own home. No painting. No additions. No installed shelving. In many cases, you may not even be able to purchase pets, or even fish. Who knows. In general, if the landlord’s in charge of repairs of everything from the furnace to the gutters on the roof, legally and fairly, you must not change anything as far as the structure and makeup of the dwelling.

Let’s back up, though, for a moment…. Remember: your landlord’s not a mindless terminator out to get your money. Rather, chances are you might even see that your rent-to-own home lease agreement doesn’t even say anything about improvements at all, meaning legally — since it’s not in the writing — you can probably paint a room or two.

Here’s the basic rule of thumb, though: ask. Always bring it up with your landlord first. Get the approval in writing — as a real estate attorney would, yet again, advise — and you’ve definitively covered all your bases.

You Live in It, Not Own It

That’s the basic truth about renting, rent-to-own homes, and tenancy. It’s a trade-off. Just know, though, that you might get lucky: you might get a landlord who’ll let you paint the living room hot pink! You won’t know unless you ask, and that’s why this is quite the premier tip as far as rental homes are concerned.

To Fight or Not to Fight an Eviction Notice: That Is the Question

I’m sure Shakespeare may have gotten an eviction notice or two in his time, as he wasn’t exactly the upscale aristocrat of his age. Who knows — maybe he did all right on the rental front! You never know. One thing’s for sure, though…. that eviction notice isn’t the be-all and end-all of your dwelling needs, nor should you freak out so much about it.

The “Good News” About the Eviction Noticereal estate eviction notice

It’s not like you’ll have to pull all your stuff out immediately — like in the next day. An eviction notice is exactly that: a notice, notifying you that in time you may have to vacate the property due to violation of the lease agreement. No harm, no foul — because you’ll have plenty of time to find another rent-to-own home from the H.O.P.E. Program without any stress.

Bear in mind this important fact: if you’ve violated those lease terms, you should not even consider fighting that eviction notice in a court of law. Please don’t. The law won’t be on your side. You can, however, approach your landlord and discuss the issue before it even gets to be official with the courts, and even then, the landlord can seek to drop all action completely — if you appease him or her sufficiently.

So I repeat: that eviction notice isn’t etched in stone. You can change what happens about that eviction notice. Just do it the right way.

The “Bad News” About the Eviction Notice

Be in the know about this as well — because, as much as it does make it difficult, even if you, the tenant, are in the right about combating the eviction notice, and you file a lawsuit, it might not be the best course of action. Sure, you may win against your landlord, and that’s fine and dandy. But think about it….

You still have to deal with that landlord — who will probably hate your guts. No tenant with the best rental tips on hand would want to have to live in a rent-to-own home with a grumpy landlord. Don’t even ask what the consequence would be if you lose your lawsuit….