Not all rental agencies are equal. That’s why it’s important to do your research before you lock into a contract with an Auburn rental agency.

But which questions are you supposed to ask? How do you determine which rental agencies are better than others? Today, we’re going to provide five questions you should ask before renting an apartment in Auburn, Alabama.

1. Do They Have Full-Time Maintenance Staff?

The difference between good apartment rental agencies and average ones often comes down to maintenance staff.

Dedicated rental agencies often employ full-time maintenance staff or have staff on standby. That means if, say, your apartment floods at 6am on a Saturday morning, there’s somebody ready and waiting to fix the damage.

Ask your rental company if they employ maintenance staff, or if each apartment complex has its own staff on standby. It’s about more than just convenience: it’s a safety thing as well.

While you’re at it, ask how long it takes for an average maintenance repair request to go through.

2. Does the Property Management Company Actually Own the Property?

There are two types of Auburn rental agencies: those that own the properties and those that manage it for someone else.

Typically, the rental agencies that own their own properties are more dedicated to upkeep, maintenance, and high-quality standards.

The reason is simple: you care more about something when you actually own it. It’s the rental agency’s job to fix all of the problems on the site and maintain adequate upkeep.

Meanwhile, property management companies often handle rentals for owners that live out of state or don’t have the time to dedicate towards adequate upkeep.

When you work with a property management company that actually owns its properties, you’ll typically experience a better level of service.

3. What’s the Parking Situation?

If you own a car in Auburn, then it’s critical that you ask your rental agency about the parking situation.

You don’t want to fight for street parking every time you drive home. You don’t want to carry your groceries down three blocks just to unload them from your car.

It’s also important to ask about the price of parking. Some apartment complexes include one or two spots with the monthly rent. Others can charge $100 per month or even more for parking spots – which can significantly raise your monthly overall costs.

Are the parking spaces covered? Are they directly in front of your unit? Are there visitor parking spaces for when you have friends over? Ask all of these questions to figure out exactly how parking works.

4. Can I Modify or Decorate the Apartment in Any Way?

If you’re going to college at Auburn University, then you may want to decorate your room by hanging various items or even painting.

Typically, most leases stipulate that the apartment needs to be restored to the same condition it was in when you moved in. Leases may also say that you need written permission before painting or decorating.

That written permission might cover something as simple as putting up a poster or driving one thumbtack into the wall. Make sure you understand this policy before you move in.

5. What’s Your Damage Deposit and Damage Policy?

Some rental companies are infamous for taking away your damage deposits. If there’s one little bit of extra cleaning that needs to be done, or if there’s any sign of a problem with the unit, then your damage deposit might disappear.

With that in mind, ask your rental agency about their damage deposit return policy. Will the entire security deposit be taken away if there are any signs of damage? Does one little hole in the wall give the company grounds to remove your entire deposit?

Of course, most rental agencies will happily tell you that they’re flexible about security deposits. Look up reviews online for Auburn property management companies or rental agencies to get a better idea of the real situation.

Looking for rentals in Auburn, AL? Liberty Properties is a boutique property management company that owns all of its properties. The company prides itself on offering high-quality, affordable accommodations while being extremely responsive with on-site maintenance.

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