Housing Tips and Suggestions
Questions to ask about renting a room:
Can I use the kitchen? What limitations are there on times of use, pots, pans, kitchen items, etc.?
Will I have a private bathroom?
Will I have a private entrance?
What furnishings are included?
How many others will also be sharing the common areas?
What are the "house rules"?
Are there any costs that are to be shared by all?
Questions to ask about renting an apartment:
When is rent due?
What all is included in the rent? What additional costs will I be responsible for?
What are the average utility costs?
What is the penalty for breaking the lease? After the initial term (say, 6 or 12 months), can I continue to rent month to month?
Is a security deposit required? Is it refundable? If so, under what conditions?
What parking is available?
Are pets allowed? Are there any additional fees for pets?
If I wish to sublet my apartment, what are the terms to do so?
Can I paint or make any changes to the apartment?
Are there storage facilities available?
Are there laundry facilities available or close by?
Is the apartment furnished?
What forms of public transportation are available?
What restaurants and shops/stores are nearby?
Selected Housing Terms
Efficiency Apartment: A large, one-room apartment (also known as a studio) with a bathroom and a kitchen area.
Furnished Apartment: An apartment either fully or partially furnished.
Group House: A house rented by a group of unrelated persons. Expenses for the house are usually shared by everyone.
Landlord: The person or company who owns the property that is leased or rented to others.
Month to Month Lease: Often permitted after the conclusion of the initial lease, a month-to-month lease allows the tenant to cease renting and move at the end of any given month as long as advance notice is given. The landlord also has the right to increase the rent or to ask the tenant to leave.
Occupancy Regulations: Rules and restrictions that exist in certain areas that prohibit the number of persons who may live in one dwelling and specify other limitations.
Renter's Insurance: Insurance which allows a tenant to protect his or her possessions against loss through theft or fire.
Repairs: A lease should specify whether the landlord or tenant is responsible for repairs in a timely manner.