Do You Get a Good Look at the Windows?

You will be suprised at how many people will shop for a rental and not bother to look at the windows or even bother to open them. They assume that they work. However, what I have found in my personal experience looking at both houses and apartments, some have either one or two windows(in one case all windows) painted shut, broken, or very difficult to open and close. In a couple of situations, management had no plans on fixing them.

At first this doesn't seem like a big deal, I mean if you have central AC and heating you wouldn't care, right? But what if the heating and cooling systems are working well for some rooms, but not for others or worse it completely shuts down? You will want to open your window especially in the bathroom, phew! Now you are stuck in a hot, stuffy place--think a hotel room with the air conditioner turned off all day, bad, very bad!

Then you have those gorgeous odd-shaped windows that really add some personality to a room. However, you might learn that you will be paying a little more for electricity when the sunlight beams through them and keeps some of your rooms hot. They are often challenging to find treatments for if you desire a little more privacy, a cooler room and on a budget. Odd-shaped window curtains have to be customized. These windows can also be annoying when you or your family want to sleep in on weekends.

So take the time to check out those windows in that potential new place between all those compliments you give your leasing agent, "Wow, great place...I could put my desk the windows!" That is until you realize those odd-shaped windows don't serve any real purpose, some windows don't open, and you may be responsible for the extra expenses to care for them.

Nicholl McGuire


Move In Inspection: Walking the Suite

So you found a great rental place, but you notice some things that you didn't see before after walking your suite? Well, if the property management company or landlord didn't supply you with a move-in inspection sheet, then note your findings and/or video your new place before moving-in or soon after.

Take the time to go to each room and list the flaws that you see. There are many people in the property management industry who will simply put "ok" down the inspection sheet for everything they see; rather than being specific. What about those markings on the kitchen floor, the chipped paint on the wall in the master bedroom, a removed outlet cover in the bathroom, a cracked glass window in the hall, or stains in the carpet in every room prior to move-in? Don't ignore them, write them up. Ms. Sally or Mr. John, the leasing consultants, may not be working in the office any longer once you are ready to move-out, so you don't want to take their word that you won't be charged for anything once you move -out.

Note general wear and tear such as the worn areas of the carpet and markings on doors and walls. The "ok" on the inspection sheet is suppose to cover that, but be specific anyway. There may also be leaky pipes, cosmetic defects on the appliances, and signs of mold and mildew, don't attempt to fix anything or remove anything without noting your findings and asking permission first. If for some reason you make matters worse, you will be responsible for any damages.

Whenever possible, try to arrange for someone from the office to walk the suite with you. Also, as mentioned earlier, take video and/or photographs of problem areas both inside and outside your apartment, town-home, or house.

Nicholl McGuire


Dress to Impress When Apartment Shopping?

Maybe you are interested in a penthouse suite or maybe just a simple apartment whichever you are interested in, why not let your real-tor or leasing consultant know what kind of taste you have? You can do this not only by what you tell her or him, but how you dress too!

Unfortunately, no matter how many laws we have to keep people from being discriminated against, there is something within all of us that will make us work harder for that attractive looking person walking through the door. Maybe we smile a little more, shake hands a little harder, offer treats, or ask if there is anything else we can do, there is something about a person's demeanor who demands special treatment and respect that will always get top notch service and most of all what they want.

So you may have thought about going on your next appointment to view an apartment with kids in tote, a little sweaty and possibly a little dirty, think again if you are looking to get a luxurious suite with a magnificent view. There are those consultants who may favor one party over the other just on appearance alone. However, what if you are seeking a simple, affordable unit with not many amenities, then a not-so attractive appearance might help, the consultant might think, "Well, he really needs this place and his kids could use the room."

Dress the part and who knows where you might end up.

Nicholl McGuire

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Over 20 years office work experience, six years completed college coursework, background in print media and communications, recognized for exceptional attendance and received merit increase for past job performance, self-published author and part-time entrepreneur, Internet marketing and social media experience. Interned for non-profit organization, women's group and community service business. Additional experience: teaching/training others, customer service and sales. Learn more at Nicholl McGuire and Nicholl McGuire Media