Leasing a Home? Prevent Move-In Headaches by Planning Ahead

Most of the headaches involved with moving into a rental home strike a tenant because of poor planning. When leasing a home in San Diego County, consider a few steps to make the process perfectly calm. A well-executed move involves a lot of moving parts, especially when leasing. An article by the San Diego Union Tribune points out a few ways to avoid pitfalls that could come back to bite you when you move out. Some problems are easily avoided by simply knowing what your lease states. Get a clear understanding of what you agreed to and your responsibilities. Then, keep careful track of your payments as well as your possessions.

Documenting what you pay

If you pay with cash, make sure you get a receipt. Otherwise, make a note on a check clearly stating if the money is for the first month’s rent, security deposit or last month’s rent. If you have to make a deposit for pets, make a note and keep the receipt. Also, have a folder that includes records indicated your pet received all of the updated shots and registration tags.

Inspecting the rental home

When you move into a rental home, your property manager often goes over an inspection checklist. Ask the property manager to fix anything that seems amiss. Record nail holes, cracks, damaged flooring, stains or broken appliances. Look for any signs of pests when you first move in. If your property manager discovers pests in 9 months because you left out food or piles of clothing, you will likely take responsibility for the pest problem. Solving problems at the start and keeping good records often means getting back your security deposit when you deserve it for properly caring for your rental home.

Notifying the post office

Notify your post office of your forwarding address as soon as you have a move-in date that’s close. File your change at usps.gov. In addition to telling the Post Office, let your friend and family know about your new residence. If you are responsible for certain utilities, call to notify the local utility companies of your move-in date. Ask your property manager about any specific contacts. In some cases, utility companies require deposits. Also, contact your credit card companies, the IRS and others about your change of address.

Asking friends to help you move

If you don’t have reliable friends or family members, hire a professional mover. You can save money on the move by packing everything yourself and having all of your items ready to go. Clearly mark boxes, indicating which room the movers need to place the box. Think about the layout of the rental home and how you will use each room. Label the boxes as “master bedroom,” “kitchen,” “bathroom off hallway,” “bathroom off master bedroom,” and so forth. Also, determine where you want the furniture to go ahead of time so you don’t waste the movers’ time or hurt the backs of your friends re-arranging sofas and heavy dressers.

Some of the issues you don’t need to worry about when you are moving into a home is whether or not you can live with the paint colors on the walls or questions about planting your favorite flowering tree in the backyard. After settling into your new rental home, there is plenty of time to consult with your property manager about any questions you have. Take some time to meet your neighbors because you might get help moving heavy boxes or a welcome pan of brownies.

At Home Team Property Management, we know moving is stressful. Whether it’s your first time leasing a rental home or your 10th time, rely on a solid property management company to ease the process. For more information about finding a home to rent in San Diego County, California, please contact us.

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