Don’t Get Stuck with a Bad Landlord: Take These Precautions

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Don’t Get Stuck with a Bad Landlord: Take These Precautions

Staff Writer · Jul 2, 2009

Anyone who has had the misfortune of dealing with a bad landlord can attest to the fact that it is not a good situation. It can lead to difficulties ranging from the inability to get repairs done when needed to suffering additional and unexpected expenses.

Tips for Avoiding a Bad Landlord

Find landlords through family and friends. There is a good chance that someone you know has had a good experience with a landlord and they may be able to recommend their landlord to you.

Utilize online, printed resources and the better business bureau to research the landlord in question. Many times, if someone has had a bad experience with a specific landlord they will file a complaint against that landlord.  When using this method it is important to remember that some claims may be unrealistic. If any complaints do exist, verify that the reason for the complaint did not involve a request or demand that was outside the normal expectations of a landlord.

Meet with the landlord in person if possible. There is no guarantee that meeting with a landlord will ensure that they are good but if you get a bad feeling about the landlord you may want to consider other options. If possible, it is a good idea to bring a friend or relative to meet with the landlord. Having a second person there to meet and talk with the landlord offers you the chance to discuss your varying opinions on the landlord. In many cases, someone who is not directly connected to the situation, such as a friend, may be more likely to pick up on possible problems.

Take a look at the contract. A good landlord will utilize a lawyer to draw up a contract which is designed to protect both the tenant and the landlord. It is also a good idea to have your own personal lawyer review the contract to verify that the wording is correct and all rules set forth in the contract are legal.

Inspect the property extremely carefully. Good landlords will maintain their properties very well. When a previous tenant moves out they will make sure the property is thoroughly cleaned and any repairs which are needed will be done before the property is listed.

Common Things to Avoid When Dealing with Landlords

Avoid landlords who make uncommonly generous offers. Landlords have specific laws they must abide by. Some may offer some benefits above and beyond what is required by law. If the claims seem too good to be true then they probably are.

Avoid landlords who seem to be pressuring you into getting moved in immediately. You should always take the time to investigate all of your different options, especially when dealing with something as expensive as an apartment. One thing to remember, if a landlord knows their property is not going to stay on the market long, they would have no desire to pressure you into signing a lease right away.

If you take the time to determine if you are dealing with a good landlord when you are looking at apartment options it can save you a lot of problems in the future.

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