you need to avoid

Not Creating a Realistic Budget

A common mistake that renters and especially first-timers often make is failing to create a realistic budget. It should include much more than the rentalprice, but also other costs, such as utilities, renters insurance, and any additional fees that may occur. Furthermore, renters need to consider moving expenses, and other start-up costs, such as buying furniture. Not having a realistic budget can lead to stress, difficulty making rent payments on time, and difficulty affording other living expenses. 

Not Doing Research on Your Landlord

It is important to do some research on the landlord and their rental units before entering into a lease agreement. Your agent can be of great help in this matter. You can also check online reviews from past tenants, if available. Exploring if they maintain their rental units properly is another prudent step.

Not Checking the Location

The most common mistake that renters make is not checking the location of the rental. This includes the surrounding neighborhood, transportation options, and proximity to shops, parks, estaurants, entertainment, and other amenities, all of which can enhance the quality of life. Additionally, consider the potential for noise and traffic.

Not Reading the Lease Carefully

Before signing any lease agreement, it is crucial to read the entire contract to ensure you understand and agree with its terms. Make sure you know what is expected of you as a renter. Familiarize yourself with the liability clauses and see how much of a renters insurance policy you need to take out. Also, explore the termination clauses or renewal dates so you can plan accordingly.

Failing to Get Renters Insurance

Getting renters insurance for yourself and your belongings is essential as a tenant. Renters or tenant insurance will cover liability claims made against you by others, as well as any damage done to your property while living at the rental unit. This type of insurance coverage is relatively inexpensive, but it still provides invaluable protection against unexpected accidents or events occurring during your tenancy period.

Not Establishing and Saving a Move In Report

Another common mistake renters make is not creating and saving a move in record detailing the condition of the rental before moving in. Before signing the lease, inspect the apartment with your agent and note any issues that need to be addressed by the landlord, such as holes, leaks, broken appliances, pest infestations and/or any other irregularities. Records can be created by taking time-stamped photos or videos of the condition of the apartment, including any damages or issues. Keep them through your rental period, and if any problems arise, use them to avoid disputes with the landlord when moving out. Without such a record, it may be difficult for the renter to prove that damages existed before they moved in, and the landlord may hold the renter responsible for those damages.


Rental agreements are legally binding contracts, so you need to understand all aspects before signing one. If in doubt, hire a real estate attorney to help you out. Remember the above tips when you are seeking a rental and work closely with your real estate agent.