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9-things you must know before renting anapartment

Apartment Finding

1. Set a budget.

Consider how much you can afford to pay and not to exceed 30% of your monthly income. Focus your search according to your budget and though you may be forced to compromise when finding a bigger apartment in a better area, make sure it’s worth spending the extra money. If you’re looking for a cheaper place to rent, try roommate services to share an apartment, but make sure you know what types of people or habits you’d prefer to avoid.

2. Where to search?

In Vietnam, you can go to brokerage service companies, completely free, of course you also need to be careful, check the cost information before starting to find apartments with them. Or you can search on real estate social networking sites, you must have someone who understands Vietnamese language. Also tell your friends who are living and working in Vietnam that you are looking for an apartment to rent and maybe they know something in their buildings.

3. What to search for?

Take a sheet of paper and write them down your requirements list. Do you want a quiet building close to school or work, that allows pets and has free parking? How about a dishwasher machine or laundry facilities nearby?
You may also want to visit the neighborhood at various times of the day, night and weekend to see if it’s what you expected.
These all count when you decide where to live in for the next few months, if not years.

3. What’s included?

It’s very important to know if the rent includes water, electricity, cable or Internet connection but more important is to know what are the average utility bills in the building.

4. Read before you sign

A common mistake we usually make is not to read a contract before we sign. Obtain a copy of any rules and regulations, make sure you go through everything and before you sign the lease, check to see if these are mentioned:
- The beginning and the expiration date
- The rental price and information about your security deposit
- What are the reasons for which your landlord can terminate your lease contract
- Are there any penalties for moving out of your apartment before the expiration date?
- Are there any responsibilities on your head for repairs and such?
- Is subletting allowed ?
- Is there a policy about guest visitors?

5. Contract issues

You have to make sure you cover every aspect to never sign a lease without seeing the apartment even if it's a bargain. Secondly, our advice is not to sign an automatic renewal clause, because you may not know what will happen next year. Maybe you change jobs or move to a new city and when the contract is renewed you have to pay even if you don't live there.
The last and very important thing if you like privacy, you should agree with the landlord before signing the contract. Tenants have their rights and homeowners should be allowed without notice only in an emergency.

6. Inspect the apartment

The most important thing when you check out an apartment that you plan to rent is not to let your appearance fool you. Find and look at the details of the apartment, if any damage requires immediate repair, you may be blamed for it or you have to fix it later.

7.  What to look for

ou like the price, the area is great, but you need to see where you’re going to live. Here are a few things to take a closer look at:
Pipes – be it gas, water or anything else, check for leaks.
Sink faucets, shower heads and water – make sure water (both cold and hot) really comes out of the faucets and the shower head and it’s with a decent pressure. Also the toilet has to flush properly and thoroughly.
Electricity and appliances should all be working. Check if all the lights or other electric devices are operational. Also check the air conditioner is working.
Walls and windows. Check the windows to see if they open, close and lock properly.
Noise. For a student, outside noise may be extremely disturbing and may interfere with learning. If it’s a highly trafficked area you may have problems concentrating and even sleeping.

8. Know your landlord

If you are someone who can speak Vietnamese language, it's easy to talk directly to the landlord about what you want.
Or you can contact brokerage companies to assist you in negotiating.

9. Get your deal

Read the lease carefully and see what applies and what doesn’t. If there are things in the lease you may not need or if you’re willing to take some responsibilities like cutting the lawn or taking deliveries kindly ask the landlord to lower the rent. Another way could be to offer a longer-term lease or a higher security deposit. A very important aspect of negotiating your lease is to be polite and not give ultimatums because you may get a quick negative answer.

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