Renting Tips

Renting Tips

Renting your first apartment? Check out the list below to read up on things to know before beginning your search!

Figure Out Your Budget
Take the time to sit down and decide what you are able to afford. Will you be living on your own? What amenities will you need? Does a roommate sound more feasible? Realize that you will be paying more than just the rent. When budgeting, also include the expense of food, utilities and water-if they are not included.

Check out “Budget Analysis Tool” for a budgeting layout.

Important Questions to Consider
As you continue to search for your dream apartment, consider the following questions:
What deposits and fees are required?

  • Is a security deposit or first/last month’s rent required?
  • When is the apartment available?
  • Do I have access to parking or laundry?
  • Is there a parking fee?
  • Does the rent increase if the number of tenants increase?
  • Who do I contact if I have any problems/need repairs?
  • What is the length of the lease?

Learn how to read and understand a residential lease to make well-informed decisions before signing by visiting the Landlord/Tenant Module.

Roommates
Getting a roommate can be a great way to save money! Even if you will be living with your best friend, certain precautions should be taken. Draw out a roommate agreement that lays out the responsibilities and liabilities of each tenant. See “Choosing a Roommate” for tips on how to make a roommate relationship work! If you would like to add your name to our Roommate List, please email Monica Woutersz, mbw5120@psu.edu, with your name, email address, phone number and current address.

Before Moving In
Alright. So everything is good to go and you are ready to move in. Before you bring in any furniture, be sure to take good pictures of the apartment. Capture the quality of carpets or any slight damages that were present before you moved in.

If you see any problems, notify your landlord before you move in. It is a good idea to put any repair requests or general requests in writing and keep copies. Hopefully, you will not encounter any problems, but if you do, it is always good to be prepared.