Leases can be very complicated. In addition to the legal aspects of a lease, you need to make sure that the terms are favorable and the information provided by you and the landlord is correct. Here are a few things to look for in a lease to make certain your lease contains the details you and the landlord have agreed
1) Is the specific address of the apartment you selected correct?
2) What is the designated length of the lease, and specifically what day does it terminate on? Is that inclusive (meaning you move that day) or non-inclusive (meaning you must be out by the day?
3 Is there a sublet clause which will allow you to rent your apartment to another person if you will not be living there during your co-op period?
4) What is the amount of the rent? Also…
a) when it is to be paid?
b) where it is to be paid?
c) are there penalties if you pay it late?
d) can the landlord can increase it during the period of the lease?
5) What utilities are your responsibility in addition to the rent? I.E. electricity, heat, water, and sewage…
6) How can you terminate your lease or renew it?
7) Do you and your landlord have to give 30 or 60 days notice to terminate or continue the lease? Specifically, when will the landlord send out a renewal letter, where will they send it and what do you need to do to renew or not renew? Many landlords will automatically renew your lease on an expensive month-to-month basis if you do not give proper notification of non-renewal.
8) What is the penalty you must pay if you have to break your lease?
9) What is the amount of security deposit required?
Leases are not to be taken lightly. Read your lease carefully. This is just a sampling of the potential terms included in a lease. Don’t just assume that the landlord has provided accurate details that give you all the legal rights you agreed to verbally. An experienced apartment locator can help you review your lease and ensure that you are receiving the terms you agreed to.