My Home Renter's Guide is a resource to help you successfully rent the perfect home or condo on Oahu.
Your landlord wants to discover everything about you by conducting a renter background check: your ability to pay the rent, your credit worthiness, your solid past rent payment history, are you solidly employed, etc.
At the same time, it is all right for you to ask questions and find out all of the information you need to know to feel comfortable renting the property.
For example, it's important for you to fully understand the lease before signing. Make a list of questions and be sure to ask them upfront. You will want to know the things that are important to you and your family and what will be expected of you.
Can I have a pet, do I need additional insurance, how long can visitors stay, can I lease out a room? Remember that you’re signing a legally binding contract and the owner and agent will expect you to live up to the terms and conditions.
Don't assume it will be like the last place you rented. You're dealing with a new home, new owner, new agent and new rules. If you have doubts or don't understand any part of the lease make sure you get things clarified in writing prior to signing.
Do you understand the terms you are agreeing to? Are there restrictions on alterations? Can I hang pictures
Pets can be a big issue. Make sure you're clear on the restrictions upfront. Can you run a home business? Can I hang things on the walls or paint? What will be expected of me when I move out?
If there are any gray areas get the specifics clarified before signing and BE SURE TO GET IT IN WRITING.
We've all heard the saying about the need to make a good first impression. This is your chance to do just that.
Come to your first meeting with all the proper paperwork. This would include a copy of your current credit report if you have it. Even though we'll do our own credit check it shows due diligence on your part to come that prepared.
You'll want to bring written reference as well. Have references ready from former or current employers, landlords and from former/current colleagues; the more the better.
Be sure to ask your landlord or property manager how repairs will handled when they become necessary.
What is their policy? Will they make these repairs in a timely fashion or will you be left for an extended period without water or with a broken window?
Take the time to read The Hawaii Landlord Tenant Code. You will find it is time well spent. Understanding what your rights and obligations are is very important. You are entitled to a safe place to live and the owner is entitled to a creditable renter. Knowing Hawaii's Tenant Code and how it applies to both renter and owner will help you know what questions to ask.
Be sure to get a copy of anything you sign or is a part of the rental agreement.
If the property is located in an association be sure to ask for a copy of the house/community rules. Read and understand how they will apply to you before signing. You might find restrictions you do not want to live with.
Property owners expect to have everything in writing. It is equally important for tenants to understand the need to do the same.
During the time you're living in the property you can also ask for repairs in writing, to ensure your request is documented.
As you can see the theme is “get it in writing”.
Understand the insurance policy the landlord has taken out on the property does not include you or your possessions. If you incur a loss from damage or theft and want to be insured, you’ll need to have your own renter’s insurance.
I cannot recommend Renters Insurance too strongly. Often your car insurer will provide you with renters insurance at a discounted rate. Be sure to check with several companies and compare what is being covered.
Does it cover your furnishings and personal effects, will it pay for a place for you to live while repairs are being made, under what circumstances are a few good questions?
My guess is you will be surprised at the many benefits provided though this inexpensive insurance. If you need names of companies that provide renters insurance be sure to ask the agent for a list.
Not only are these policies relatively inexpensive, like any other type of insurance it offers peace of mind which is the best reason to check it out.
In my experience renting Oahu residential rental properties I find that some renters don’t take into consideration the importance of communication.
While it’s true you are renting out a physical piece of property you’re also entering into an agreement with another person. If you cultivate that relationship just like you do any other relationship in your life it will go a long way to keeping an agreeable connection.
That is why I encourage you to ask questions and get to know me as we work together. Effective communication always helps avoid misunderstandings that could have otherwise been avoided.
Communication ensures a happy stay for you and your family because we are in agreement and have similar expectations.
If you've enjoyed my Home Renter's Guide, I'd love to talk with you personally about the Oahu rental properties I have available.
Feel free to give me a call or fill out the form below so we can talk on the phone or set up a time to meet.
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