How Do I Select Condos for Rent Near Me? Take Time, Research Several Complexes Before Deciding

Row of colorful red yellow blue white green painted residential townhouses. Find pleasant condos for rent in your area by contacting the major real estate companies doing business locally, check out the local newspaper and go online. Key in to your search engine using quote marks: condos for rent near me or condos near me. You can get very specific and key in: destin florida condo rentals, condos for rent in tampa fl, virginia beach condo rentals, etc.


How to rent a condo? Finding and renting a condominium near you is somewhat different than finding and renting a rental apartment: you are typically subject to more rules and regulations and “have more bosses” than if you were to simply rent a rental apartment. In a rental complex, there are the rules issued by the management company that runs the place that you need to be aware of. In a condo, there are the rules of the homeowners association, plus possible rules of the condo owner who you are renting from…particularly if you are renting a condo that is furnished.

Give Yourself Time to Shop for a New Condo Rental

If it is at all possible, begin looking for a new condo to rent months before you actually need to sign the new lease. Often, this is not possible because you are moving to a new area or because you have decided to move at the last minute and have a relatively strict deadline.

Condos for rent!

In “shopping” for a new condo near you, you will want to drive through the complex during week days and on the weekend. If it has a pool, visit it during the busy season. Is it obnoxiously crowded with screaming kids (and you yourself do not have screaming kids to add to the din)? Is barbecue smoke clouding the area? Are people loudly playing music that you hate? Is the pool impossible to use on the weekend? On the other hand, is the pool filled with people that you want to be with acting the way you want people around a semi-public swimming pool to act?

Are there other amenities at the complex that you are interested in such as tennis. Are the courts available? Is the complex located on the shore of a lake or bay where you can indulge in sailing–a sport you always wanted to take up? On the other hand, are the tennis courts really over-used and tied up? Can you sign up to play tennis at 3 pm on Wednesday afternoon for an hour? If so, you might want to cross that condo off your list. You need to find a place that fits into your lifestyle and desires. After all, in this day and age, we are all paying a lot of money for rentals.

Magnificent pools are available for no added charge.

Demographic of the Condo Complex

What type of demographic is at the complex? Are the people just out of college? Young, married couples? Families with children? Retirees flying off to Florida at the drop of a hat? Divorcees or widowed retirees? Demographics count! If you are a divorced or widowed retiree and the complex you are looking at is young singles, you probably don’t want to rent there unless you are really interested in making a fool out of yourself.

We knew of one couple, who were still working 40-plus hours a week into their 70s, that sought out and rented a condo in an active adult community only to find that they were the only ones on their block in winter and a nearly vacant recreation facility. Everyone but everyone cleared out and went to someplace warm right after Thanksgiving and stayed there until April.

What Do You Need in a Rental?

What size unit do you need? Rental rates at condos and rental rates at typical apartment complexes should be fairly similar in a given marketplace, but sometimes individual condo owners, not really aware of market rents, will try to jack up the rent on their unit over what is being typically charged in the market.

A good way to stay on top of this is to look at several condos for rent and several apartment units for rent. If two bedroom units are going for around $1,600 a month in your neck of the woods, then that would be the price you would want at the condo rental. If there is wide variance in the price for no good reason, you might want to opt for the rental apartment. Now, things could be somewhat different for example, the condo could have more amenities than the nearby rental apartment. The club facilities could be finer and there could be other luxury options in which you could partake. If you are not interested in any of those luxury onsite options, then shop elsewhere for an rental unit because you will be wasting your money.

What Else Do You Need in a Condo Rental?

What else do you want and need in a condo rental? Is there enough light coming into the complex? Is it situated in the complex where you can enjoy yourself? For example, some units might have a view of a beautiful lake or river on one side, but be sitting next to a freeway in the back of the complex. This is important, if you are sitting facing a major roadway from your rental unit, not only can it be highly depressing, but when there are traffic jams, all of that automobile exhaust could travel into your unit. And when there is no traffic jam, the highway could be so loud as to impair you hearing from all of the road noise.Is the unit light and airy? Find something that you will enjoy, if you have the choice.

Furnished or Unfurnished. That Is the Question!

Do you need furnished or unfurnished? If you are just starting out in the world after college, you may need a furnished condo to save money on all the furniture and furnishings that you would need to purchase. On the other hand, you will be subject to additional payments if you break dishes and glasses or otherwise stain the couch with red wine. Further, you might well be subject to someone’s obnoxious paintings that they have installed all around the condo. All of these things can get in the way of how you want to live, so before you rent a furnished apartment, think through what you want.

If you rent furnished, you need to go over the entire apartment and furniture and furnishings with the owner of the condo or the rental agent so that you both have a written document and photos if anything is broken or stained or missing when you move in.

How Many Parking Spaces Do You Get?

How many parking spaces you are entitled to is very important if you are in the habit of having guests sleep over. You probably have one car, so one parking place is probably enough. But is there guest parking available? Or is that already filled up at 5 pm in the afternoon? Are there other parking spaces on the complex for guests. If you are in the habit of having a friend stay over at your apartment, you can often run into problems at condo developments where there is one parking space allotted per owner.

We have also run into the highly obnoxious situation where the condo owner who is renting the unit actually has two parking spaces available, but he is keeping his broken down 1980s sports car in the second parking space, so you only have one available to you. This can be important and an annoyance, so check this one out carefully.

What About the Gym or Workout Facility?

What is the situation like with the onsite gym or workout room? Is there space for you to work out or is everyone lining up for the two or three pieces of exercise equipment available?

What Amenities Do You Need Around You?

What’s around you in the area as far as amenities go? Are you busy working all of the time? If so, is there a place for you to drop off your dry leaning and pick up a meal after work, or do you need to travel miles to for dry cleaning? What about local schools, if you have a child? Are the schools decent, are there school buses that pick up the kids. What if you have to leave for work before the school bus gets there. What if the school bus is frequently late, making you late for work and pissing off your boss?

What About Local and Regional Transportation?

If you need to use public transportation to get to work, is it nearby and does it have a reliable reputation. If you are at the very end of a bus or subway or streetcar line, does the vehicle always show up late or not at all. Are there buses nearby. If you are driving to work, are there major highways that you can use nearby or do you have to travel over clogged local roads, wasting valuable time in the morning and evening to get to work. Simply selecting a complex in one neighborhood or the other could dramatically affect how much time you spend on the road, so take this into account. One major study by the University of Texas put the average time that drivers spend in congestion at 42 hours a year. If you are traveling to work an hour each way when everything is running, this 42 hours is an add on to all of the time you are on the road already.
Is the rental condo near enough to where you work? Could you do better? Could you get a rental right down the road from where you work, have a lot more free time and live more happily?

Are there places to shop and dine where you are considering renting a condo. If the only place to shop is Walmart and the only place to eat is MacDonalds, this could be depressing. When renting a condo, look at what is around you and what fits the lifestyle you want. If you are dating, you will want to be in an area that offers a lot to a single person. If you are culturally oriented, you will want to be near museums, and cultural events.

When looking for a condo rental, watch out with online real estate operations. We are not talking about Zillows of the world or other fine websites with a great reputations. We are talking about condo rental sites that offer you cheap condos and then want your Social Security number and other important details about you up front before they will reveal their wonderful “bargain condo rentals.”

Stay with the better-known companies.Read all of the rules governing the condo. This is important! There are many rules in there that you may not be able to abide. For example, in one area known for its snow in the winter, the condo homeowners association specifies that 12 hours after the snow stops, you must remove your car from the parking lot in order that they snow plow can get into the lot and clear it. The question that pops up loud and clean in our mind is, how the hell can I get out of the lot if it is filled with snow? The rule does not make sense. And what if you are traveling on business and it snows at the complex. What are you suppose to do if you took an Uber to the airport and left your car at home? So check the rules and regulations carefully so that you are not annoyed or disappointed.

What about pets, barbecues and other things you might like. Are they allowed? If you have a dog or cat that is more dear to you than most other family members that you have, check this out carefully. Can you renew your rental if you like the complex. Some homeowner associations have very strict rules about renting condos and one of the rules is that only one renewal is allowed. Check that out so that you are not surprised a year or two from now.

If you run your own business, can you legally do so from the complex. Now, it is true that many businesses can be run out of a condo for rent without anyone every knowing what you are doing. But if you regularly get UPS deliveries and Fedex packages, then you better be up to date with the rules of the development. Another situation that you must checkout before signing anything is if you drive a truck for your business, can you park it overnight in the complex. While residents might be used to “Joe’s Painting” truck at the complex during the day, this could raise hackles at night. If might not make any difference and may be perfectly fine to park your truck there, but check it out before you sign on the dotted line.

Are you aware and okay with all of the fees you can be charged? In addition to your monthly rent, what other money do you have to come up with over the course of your stay at the complex? Do you have to make a security deposit? If so, how many moneys? Is the money put in to escrow for you? Do you have to pay a homeowners association fee that no one told you about when you rented the condo? This happens and it can get very ugly. Are there late fees. Are there common area fees? Are there application fees and background check fees when making the application? (We don’t like them and will not pay them, period!) Is there a realtor’s fee for renting the complex. Are there parking fees. Ask the question and if you do not get a straight answer, ask it again. If you still do not get a straight answer, walk!

What if you need repairs. The water is leaking, the dishwasher stops. Who fixes this stuff? How quickly do they fix it? Importantly, who pays for the repair?

Condo Insurance Coverage

What kind of insurance do you need for this condo rental? What do other in the complex have. Check with an insurance broker about this. There is condo insurance, which covers many things and might be adequate, but what if you were to leave a bath running and do to work, the water spills over the top and completely floods the condo below. Do you have coverage for this? When living in close proximity to other people, you have to be aware that you can have liability issues. Are you covered? You need to be cover.

Who is responsible for the area outside of the condo? You might think, that does with saying that it is the responsibility of the condominium association! You are probably right, but it definitely does not so without saying. Question everything before you sign on the dotted line. If you think you have only stupid questions, then ask stupid questions. You need to know the answers.

What is the security like at this complex? What is around the complex? If there is a drug rehab center across the street, you might look to locate somewhere else. Along those lines, who accepts packages at the complex during the day. With so many of us doing so much online shopping, you will probably get a lot of packages over the term of your lease. Does that package simply sit outside of your door or does the condominium association have a procedure in place for getting packages.

What is the washer/dryer situation like at the complex. One washer and dryer in the basement for four or eight units? You may well run into a crowd down there when you want to get your laundry done. If possible, find a unit with washer and drying right in it. If makes for easier and more enjoyable living.



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