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7 Warnings Signs to Look For in Your Lease

Published on August 31, 2017 by rae steinbach

If you are living in New York City, you know how hard it is to find an apartment at an affordable rent. Even beyond that, though, interpreting the lease could be the most challenging part. Whether you’re renting a luxury apartment or just catching the end of a term on a short term rental in NYC, it’s essential to have a lease in place that you feel comfortable signing.

Often, the lease tends to favor landlord over the tenant. Moreover, most of the landlords and management companies consider leases as “take it or leave it” opportunities when renting an apartment in NYC. This can not only make living in the apartment difficult, but also any rent bargaining to compromise on a price. So before you sign, you should read through your lease carefully.

Here are 7 warnings signs to look for in your lease before signing:

Renewal Clauses and Renewal Policies:

You should look out for renewal clauses and renewal policies if they are mentioned on the lease. If you are required to renew the lease to rent your NYC apartment again after one year or more, you must check if there is any escalation clause that can raise the rent in coming years. You should also determine if this rent raise is based on a fixed dollar amount, a percentage of the first year’s rent, or as a portion of increased costs of living.

Insurance:

In many cases, the insurance provided by landlords does not truly cover the tenant. The tenant is instead recommended to purchase renter’s insurance that protects their property against fire, theft, and water damage. Surprisingly, this insurance often costs a relatively affordable rate of under $200 each year.

Insurance also includes any personal liability damages that can result from an individual’s negligence. For example, if your kitchen sink or bathroom sink overflows and damages the apartment below you, you will not be held accountable for paying the repairs or damages. You should check if insurance is included in the lease of your NYC apartment and what the terms of it are, if so.

contract

Air conditioners:

Some landlords may not give you the right to install an AC unit. Others may restrict the number of units or might not allow you to use air conditioners due to the outdated wiring of the building.

You should discuss this issue if it not stated in your NYC apartment’s lease before signing. Either you would need someone else to install the AC, or have to ask the landlord to avoid a penalty.

Renovations:

For any NYC rental renovations, you must get written approval. This is the case even if the landlord has agreed to let you make the alterations to the apartment. Getting this clause written in the lease is very important, as in other instances you would be responsible for the cost of returning the apartment to its original condition.

Pets:

If you are planning on keeping a pet in your apartment in NYC, it could mean major trouble. To avoid any problem, just make sure that the landlord already knows about the pet. Additionally, the pet policy should be mentioned in the lease. You should be checking that the apartment lease rules declare it as pet-friendly.

Furnished Apartments:

An inventory list of the furniture in an NYC apartment must be mentioned in the lease if the apartment is fully furnished. It should also be mentioned that all furniture items are in suitable condition when the lease begins. The furniture list and confirmation of quality are both very important to check if written in the lease or not. If you see any issues regarding either one of the factors, don’t hesitate to bring that up before signing.

Subletting:

Most rental leases in NYC require the permission and consent of a landlord to sublet. As far as roommates are concerned, they should be mentioned in the lease, too, in order to avoid any problems. Check on both the sublet terms and roommate requirements within the lease.

Signing a lease starts with finding the right apartment in NYC. Short Term Rentals NYC is the simple and convenient way to find the rental that suits you, regardless of budget. With listings across avery neighborhood of NYC, you can find the NYC rental that’s just right for you. Then, you can use the handy guide above to sign off on the lease and make your new NYC apartment truly your home.

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