The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

Apartment hunting?

Ed Board offers some tips for finding a successful home

For many students, the closing of the school year brings a frenzy of activity: final exams, papers, plans for summer and the most dreaded, moving. For those of you that aren’t moving, consider yourself lucky. But for those of you who are, Ed Board has some important advice and tips to offer before you sign a legal document.

After you’ve had the grand tour of the facility and spotted some cute neighbors, there are several questions you should get answers to before saying “yes.”

Talk to current residents. How long have they lived there? What’s the experience been like? Is there anything they can tell you about the apartment you’re thinking about leasing?

Drive by at off hours to make sure you’re getting the full experience of what it’s like to live there. Your neighbors could be huge partiers, or you could live near a busy set of train tracks.

Take your investigation to the Web and see what current and former tenants have said about your complex at http://www.apartmentratings.com. Find out who your landlord is. Does she live nearby? Next door? In Antarctica? Because when you have a problem and need to talk with her, the last thing you need to worry about is an unreturned phone call. Meeting with her before you sign the lease wouldn’t be a bad idea either.

If you’re curious to know the crime situation in that area, file for a five-year list of crime reports at the local police station. You may find it worthwhile to know about the string of thefts or armed robberies that took place a couple blocks away last spring.

Make sure you have good cell phone reception inside the building, especially if your cell phone is your main source of communication.

Ask about current and future construction of the building and complex. Don’t expect the leasing agent to tell you; in fact, he may not know. Get all the answers.

Ask about the parking situation. Where can your friends and family park their cars while they’re visiting?

Find out about all the amenities. Does your lease include a gym membership? Laundry facilities? Access to the pool? Do you pay the water bill?

If you are using a leasing agent, make sure he or she knows your price range and sticks to it. There’s nothing more disappointing than touring a place you love and finding out it’s not within the price range you had specified.

And finally, don’t feel pressured to make a decision on the spot. Sleep on it – after all, it will be your home for the next year.

More to Discover