What should I know before I sign a lease?

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If possible, you should always take a tour before you sign a lease so you can get a feel for the apartment community in-person.

If you are searching for FSU apartments, the probability that you are a first time lease signer is significantly high. As you begin to parallel into a contractual universe unknown, know that you are not alone in this. Signing a lease, or a contract in general, is really just a submission to the outlines and foundations of your agreements and penalties sequestered for both parties in the event that one fails to adhere to the agreement. Although the later part of that sentence may seem intimidating, there are three basic components of signing a lease that will help you ease your mind when submitting yourself to a year long home.

1.READ your Lease, don't just SKIM it, and keep a COPY.

Many FSU apartments tend to follow a standard lease agreement when requiring your John Hancock in exchange for a living unit. However, each lease will and should be specific to YOUR preferences. Read the contract to ensure that there is clarity on how much rent you owe each month, when it is due, and the penalties regarding the failure to adhere to the due date policy. Don't be shocked to learn you may owe a pricey late fee in the event that you cannot comply with the rental due dates.

Never hold someone else accountable for your mistakes. Keep a copy of your exact lease at the time of signing. That way, if any mishap shall arise, you will have the binding paper that will dictate your determinative outcome.

Know exactly what it is you are signing. Be aware of what may happen in the circumstance that you will need to terminate your lease agreement or what you can do if your unit no longer tolerates a standard living space. For instance, what will happen if a leak wipes out your living room? Will you be accommodated? Or are you responsible for damages? If this is not spelled out in your lease, ask. They can always add these types of conversations into your lease agreement.

Know what is included in your lease agreement. Are you entitled to a specific parking spot, have access to exclusive amenities? Are you banned from owning a specific breed of dog? What are you getting in exchange for your promise?

2. Inspect your EXACT unit prior to signing.

Let's face it, there is a high chance your unit will not look exactly like the model showroom that was displayed as your future unit. Inspect your living quarter before compelling yourself to sign. For starters, you should definitely want to see the condition of your home. Second, If there are any damages to the space, such as carpet stains, holes in walls, missing blinds, you want to make management aware so that you are not held responsible for those damages. In the event that you do notice any discrepancies, have them written in your lease. Where these is no ambiguity, there is no reason to blame.

3.Know the Maintenance Routine

Arguably, one of the most circulating questions that can enhance or destroy your living experience is the mechanics of maintenance. Before signing your lease, ask what the process is for requesting repairs. How long does it take for repairs to be made? Is maintenance responsible for household repairs such as air filters and light bulbs? Does the staff spray the grass for bugs, keeping your pet free from fleas?

In the course of a year, it is without question that any household will experience the need of some type of repair. It is always best to know how and when your repairs will be made.

Prior to moving into FSU apartments, it is always best to install a mental clarity of everything you are agreeing to when moving in to the community. Although many apartments near FSU will have similar leasing formats, always check with staff or management with any questions you may have. Keep in mind, these contracts will include many lawyering vocabulary words and clouded clauses. Do not be afraid to ask what those mean. The last thing you want to do is be bounded to an agreement you never agreed to.

These are the opinions of writers and not the opinions of RentTally.com or any of our advertising partners.