Renting 101: Renter’s Responsibilities

Couple with moving boxes.We can find tons of articles about the responsibilities of a landlord, and many responsibilities of a landlord are required by the state or are included in your lease. For instance, landlords are responsible for things like maintaining a safe apartment building with access to adequate heat, water, and electricity. But do we ever think about the responsibilities we as renters have? A renter’s responsibilities are outline in their lease, but there are also a few common sense actions that renters can take to ensure a safe and positive rental apartment experience.

  1. Pay your rent on time

For a landlord to provide upkeep of a rental, the renter must pay their rent on time. Landlords use rent payments to pay for things like insurance, maintenance and upkeep, and staff to help keep the rental livable. Besides being one of the key renter’s responsibilities in leases, it’s also smart to pay rent on time and help maintain a good relationship with the landlord.

  1. Let your landlord know of maintenance issues

If you fail to tell your landlord of a leaking pipe or a broken window, then the landlord cannot fix the issue. Even if you caused the damage, like accidentally put a hole in a wall or broke a window, let the landlord know as soon as you discover a problem so it can be resolved. If you were at fault, you may have to pay for the repair, but if you let the problem linger it may lead to bigger repairs down the line.

  1. Keep your property clean

Keeping your property clean helps maintain an orderly appearance to other renters and guests. Keeping your rental clean also helps keep pests away and helps avoid potential safety hazards like someone slipping on a dirty floor or a fire hazard caused by piled up trash.

  1. Be neighborly

Always consider your neighbors, especially when it comes to things like noise levels when having a party or cleaning up around the outside of your apartment. This doesn’t mean you can’t have a party or play music, but it’s considerate to keep a respectable volume. Notifying your neighbors before your parties – even inviting them to join you – is the best way to avoid complaints to the landlord.

  1. Be mindful of parking

If you have a designated parking spot, use it and only it. Don’t park your vehicle in your neighbor’s parking spot. Don’t make matters even worse by letting guests park in your neighbor’s parking spot. Let you guests know ahead of time where they should park.

  1. Treat your apartment as though you own it

Your rental apartment is your home while you live there. Even though someone else owns it, treat it with the same respect you would if you owned the apartment. This attitude not only makes your apartment life more pleasant, but also makes it more likely that you’ll get your security deposit back when you move on.

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Kalee Cowan is a graduate of Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Rural Studies: Writing and Communication. She is a writer, a baker, and a customer service representative for an insurance agency in her South Georgia hometown. When she is not working, she is attending concerts, reading an always growing list of books, and spending time with her family. You can find her on Instagram and Pinterest.

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