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THINGS TO CONSIDER BEFORE YOU SIGN A LEASE

There are a number of concerns when signing a lease. While lease agreements are quite standard, you should never sign a lease without looking over all the sub-clauses and ensuring that you understand everything on the lease. Leases will go over a number of things including how much you pay for rent, the things that are allowed and not allowed in your rental property and how long you must stay at your place. It should also go over electrical costs, pets, major and minor repairs such as replacing smoke alarm batteries, and other main topics.

When you are asked to sign a lease you need to consider your options carefully. Below are a few things to consider before signing a lease. Take your time to read over the lease in your own time and don't hesitate to ask questions if there is something that you do not understand.

Maintenance Clauses on Leases

One of the things you will notice when it comes to lease agreements is the clause on maintenance. For example, if you are renting a house with a large yard, a garden, a swimming pool or other features, then are you in charge of mowing and chemicals for the pool or is the landlord in charge of it? For example, a mowing and landscaping service company may come to your home every month and perform the services without you even realizing it. This is normally set up through your landlord and you won't really be in charge of doing anything.

Or, you may have to do the maintenance yourself. In the lease agreement it may be a requirement that you tend to the gardens and mow the lawn at least once a month to keep the house presentable. This is something you need to be prepared to do when signing a lease.

Another thing to consider when signing a lease is the clause on subletting. What this means is that you allow someone else to stay in your home and pay rent while you are still living there or still on the lease. If you want to get a roommate down the road, for example, then this is considered subletting and most landlords do not allow it. Instead you will need to stick to the terms and conditions of the lease which means living in the house with the same people that you signed the lease with from Day One.

Pets on Leases

Another thing to consider when signing a lease is the clause on pets. Many apartments and some homes do not allow pets at all while others may allow certain pets, such as cats or birds. Large dogs are often banned from inside rental homes and this is something that can be frustrating if you are trying to find a house for you and your German Shepherd.

If you are on a no pet lease and want a pet down the road, then you need to think about this before signing the lease. Ask your landlord about this and he should give you a direct answer. If you promised your daughter a dog for her birthday then signing a lease with a no pet clause is only going to disappoint everyone in the end.

Keeping these things to consider before you sign a lease is important. Many new renters are so excited about their new home that they quickly scan through the pages and sign their name. Refrain from doing this and take your time. If you are unhappy with something, it is possible to talk to your landlord about changing it so everyone is happy.

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