The Tenant Life: Some Essential Dos and Don'ts
Living in a property that you're renting gives you ample freedom. You no longer have to worry about maintenance or repairs since you can't sell the property or gain equity on it. However, people may ask you questions like, "isn't the tenant responsible for plumbing? Isn't lawn care your job?"
Typically, tenants are not responsible for these tasks; which may also be the reason more than a third of all Americans choose to rent rather than own. Renting a home gives you excessive independence, but that doesn't mean you can go with all guns blazing. The intricacies can vary from lease to lease.
Here are some essential dos and don'ts for the tenant's life.
Do: Always Pay Your Rent on Time
While it may sound obvious, several tenants fail to do the one thing they're supposed to do on time. This is perhaps your biggest responsibility, and if you fail to pay your rent on time, you're breaking the regulations of your tenancy agreement. Moreover, by paying your rent on time, you'll also boost your credit score. Not only will this allow you to sustain your financial position, but it will also keep your landlord happy.
Do: Help in Maintaining the Property
When you're going over the dos and don'ts of renting a property, one of the essential dos is maintaining the property. While your landlord is responsible for making the repairs, it is your job as the tenant to inform the landlord when there's something wrong in your living space. Whether it's a leaking faucet, a broken door knob, or a shattered window glass, you'll have to report these concerns as soon as they arise.
When a small problem becomes a major concern, you'll be held responsible. For instance, if your living space has hardwood floors and you let a leaking dishwasher ruin the floors, you can be held responsible for wreckage.
Don't: Make Major Renovations
According to PropertySourced, one of the most important things to remember while being a tenant is your limitations. Your agreement with the landlord should stipulate how improvements within the house will play out. While the owner may be thrilled to know you've added ceiling fans in all bedrooms, they may not want to reimburse you. Whether it's the installation or the purchasing costs, you can forget about the reimbursement.
Moreover, even if you decide to take these ceiling fans with you when moving out, the landlord will hold you responsible for texturizing, patching, or re-painting the ceilings. You can, however, change cabinet doors and improve your bathroom slightly. Talk to the landlord before making any repairs or additions.
Don't: Use a Hammer for Any Project
Most landlords let their tenants hang a few portraits around their houses. They may also let you hang decorative curtains on metal rods. That said, it's essential to carefully consider any décor idea that makes you use a hammer. In simpler words, get rid of those thoughts of mounting wooden cabinets in your bathroom or adding other tough details into your living space.
That said, that doesn't mean you can't decorate in any other way. For instance, if you have any appliances, you can upgrade them. You may also consider applying a stainless steel cover over your dishwasher or refrigerator. These covers have magnetic capabilities and are easy to peel and stick and transform your living space.
Don't: Go Crazy with Paint
Tenants often like to claim that they've left the house in a better condition than they found it in because of the subjective decisions they've made. That is rarely the case, though. At least that's not what the landlord thinks. The rule of thumb, again, in this case, is to ask the landlord for their permission and get them to sign it.
The landlord possibly kept the colors dull because they liked it that way or planned to use the living space later on in life. Don't tarnish their plans!
The most important thing to remember as a tenant is that your home isn't exactly yours. Sounds harsh, yes, but keeping this in mind can also save you from making several huge blunders.
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