Most people aren’t happy about looking for apartments every year. But when you have to, then you need to know what questions to ask so you don’t miss out on some important things and get to deal with some terrible landlords. Like it or not, there are landlords that are just a huge pain in the butt. And until you ask the questions, it may not appear to you that they are like that. That said, let’s jump right in and furnish you with enough ammo to weed out the bad landlords.
Is the Place Big Enough?
The last thing you want to do is pay for a place only to find that it’s too cramped or small for you. So, find out about the size of the apartment that you intend to take. If you’re single, you should think about one room or a decent sized apartment, depending on your financial situation. If you’re married with kids, you need a bigger space. Find out what the size of the bathroom, kitchen, dining, bedroom and living rooms are. This will help you make the right decision when you’re looking for accommodation in Toronto.
How Noisy is the Place?
This is an essential question. If you don’t mind a noisy apartment or building, then this question is moot. But, if you refer some peace, quiet and order, you need to ask this question. When checking out the building, be on the lookout for things like a central swimming pool, proximity to the road, street or train tracks and the building itself. You can be sure that if it’s a block of apartments, there will be some noise. How loud the noise is, will depend on your co-tenants.
How Much Does the Apartment Cost?
Chances are you’ll always ask this question anyway. But it bears reminding because people generally ask and don’t ask what the rent actually covers. Find out how much the apartment costs and what your rent takes care of every month. Is the rent for just the housing? Will you have to pay extra for electricity water, heating, internet and other amenities or will your rent cover all these? Find out and do a comparison with some other places you might have seen.
Where Can I Stay Before Getting an Apartment?
If you have just decided to move to Toronto, your best bet would be to stay in a hotel whilst looking for apartments of your choice. Luckily, there are quite a few decent hotels near Toronto airport where you can stay for a few days whilst scoping out the city and its available apartments. We strongly advocate that you avoid paying for an apartment without seeing it or inspecting it and the neighborhood, regardless of how pretty or attractive it is. Nothing sucks and sullies your impression of a city more than poor or inadequate housing. So, secure hotel accommodation in Toronto first. Then, start house hunting. Hopefully, you won’t have to search for long.
Where’s the Apartment Located?
This is an extremely crucial question. It is what determines how happy or pissed of you would be for the duration of your stay in the apartment. So ask about entry and exit, the floor the apartment is located on, its proximity to school, work and the department store or market. Also find out about the neighborhood. Never make the mistake of jumping at an apartment without checking out the neighborhood.
Make sure it’s safe during the day and at night. This is particularly important if you have two or more jobs or work the night shift. Do this: take a tour of the street you intend to stay in. When you’re done, go check streets that are close by and within a 5-10km radius. You need to do this because even if your street looks nice and decent. If the neighboring streets aren’t, we’d suggest looking elsewhere.
Otherwise, you stand a chance of having your car broken into or being mugged while taking a walk outside or coming from work at night. As a rule, check the streets in the morning, afternoon and night. This will help give you a feel of what the place looks like at all times.
What Are the Utilities like?
Some folks generally assume that once they have paid for a place, the utilities are also covered for the month. Wrong! If you don’t want to find yourself freezing in the middle of winter, find out. That way, you can make alternative arrangements or pay the extra required to make those available for you. If you’re a student and intend to take an apartment in one of those rental homes, be doubly sure of the heat utilities. Most rental homes tend to have poor insulation. Be extremely sure that it will be taken care of so you never have to worry about the basics anymore.
Can I Bring in My Pets and Smoke
If you smoke, find out if the landlord is open to that and if there are extra charges for doing any of those two things. Some landlords don’t like tenants who smoke. Others don’t want pets in the building. Then there are those who don’t want those two things at all. If they do, ask and see if there’s a preference to size, breed and number of pets.
Are There Available Amenities I Can Use?
Some buildings or apartment complexes have a laundry room with washing machines on some floors or in the basement of the building. So, find out amenities hey have available. Ask to see if they have a dishwasher, a pool, or anything you consider important. And if you have the cash, see if there’s a full furnished apartment ready for you to take.
These are just some of the very important questions that you need to ask. We know that apartment hunting can be daunting and stressful. But don’t fall into the trap of making a decision in a hurry without being fully satisfied. Otherwise, you might regret living there and have to start looking elsewhere when your lease expires.
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