Time to Move? Here’s Some Tips To Make It Easy!
When moving anywhere, tips on relocation are especially helpful. Apartments Now would like to make moving to San Antonio, Texas as stress-free as possible for you so we have developed a list of tips that will make your San Antonio, Texas relocation a walk in the park.
“How to Find the Right Apartment”
“Asking the Right Questions”
“How to Choose the Right Movers”
Find The Right Apartment
Finding that perfect apartment means taking some time and coming up with exactly what you’re looking for. Having a well defined list of must-haves and nice-to-haves will make your apartment search much easier.
- Location, location location. Take some time to learn the areas you’d like to live in. Check the schools (if they’re important to you) the crime rates, the shopping, entertainment, walkability, public transit … really the lifestyle each area affords you. Our apartment locators can definitely help with some of this!
- Identify your top priorities. Do you have pets? Need extra parking spaces? Do you prefer the first floor? Is a view important? What amenities will you really use? Think through and list out your wish list then prioritize it. Unless your budget is unlimited you may have to make a few trade-offs.
- Evaluate The Apartment. Is the building in good condition? Are the grounds well-kept? Are the common areas clean and well cared for? You can tell by the state of the grounds how the property is managed and that will often affect your living experience as much as the unit itself!
- Visit the apartment during the day and at night. It’s not a bad idea to visit the property at night too, just to see how you like the feel of it in the evening.
- Ask the neighbors how they like living there. It may take a little courage, but it is worth asking current residents how they feel about the building. See what response times are like for maintenance and repair requests.
- Check out the amenities! Who’s allowed to use swimming pools, recreation and fitness rooms, tennis courts? What hours are they open? Are
thereadditional fees charged to use those facilities?
- Ask about Utilities. Does the landlord or tenant pay the water bill? Are any utilities, such as gas and electric, included in the rent? Do units have individual thermostats to control heat and air conditioning?
- Examine the Lease. How much notice must you give before moving at the end of the lease term? Can the rent be increased? If so, by how much and how often? Are pets allowed? What provisions cover your security deposit and end of lease cleaning costs? What is the responsibility of tenants for wear or damage to property? What is the penalty for breaking a lease?
- Be prepared! Collect information to present to landlords and leasing agents before beginning your search, including your credit report, pay stubs and/or tax returns and references. That way if you find the perfect place you can jump on it!
The Right Questions
The best way to avoid a mistake when selecting an apartment is to ask questions. Some questions are for the apartment management, other questions are best answered by your prospective neighbors.
- What is the apartment complex policy concerning noise? How are they enforced?
- Is there a designated parking place with the apartment? Can extra parking places be obtained, and if so, what is the cost?
- Where are the electrical outlets and phone jacks located?
- What type of laundry facilities does the complex have?
- What, if any, utilities are included in the rent?
- What security features do you have? Smoke detectors, etc?
FOR THE NEIGHBORS
- Do you often hear noise from dogs, planes, trains, other tenants?
- How responsive is the apartment management to repairing things in the apartment or apartment complex? Do they maintain things like smoke detectors and lights to keep the complex safe?
- Are shared laundry facilities usually available or does the complex have an inadequate supply of washers and dryers?
- If the complex is gated, is the main entrance usually locked securely?
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Choose the Right Movers
The right time to find a moving company is 5 – 8 weeks before you move. Here are some guidelines to use when selecting a moving company:
Ask friends and coworkers for moving companies they have had success with. Check moving companies by calling the Better Business Bureau.
Find out what is included in the quote. Find out what the company will, and will not move. If you are moving items that require special handling, make sure that the mover has experience and the correct equipment to move those things.
Get several estimates. The only way to get an accurate estimate is for the mover to inspect your home and see what needs to be moved. Ask the mover if the estimate is binding, and if so for how longs, and find out if there is a cost for the estimate.
If one estimate is much lower than the others – find out why.
To minimize costs, dispose of unnecessary or hard-to-move items before you get an estimate.
Write “subject to further inspection for concealed loss or damage” on the contract when you sign it to protect yourself in case you find damage when unpacking.
Understand the types of insurance coverage offered. Be sure to ask movers to price out all the options so you can make an informed decision.
- Basic Liability – Usually about 60 cents per pound per item, it is often included at no additional charge, but it does not cover the full repair or replacement of a damaged article.
- Depreciated Value – Also called standard protection. It is an additional charge that ensures your shipment based on the weight and value of your possessions; however, with this type of insurance, the mover is only responsible for the determined depreciated value of each item.
- Full Value – provides the most comprehensive coverage (replacement of full repair) but requires a larger additional fee.
Ask to see a copy of the mover’s ICC (Interstate Commerce Commission) Annual Performance Report. Interstate movers are required to provide information about past performance and complaint handling procedures. They are also required to provide you with a copy of an ICC publication about your moving rights and responsibilities.
Make an inventory list and label the contents of all boxes.
When the van arrives at your new location, be ready to pay the charges so the crew can unload your shipment. Carefully check your inventory list and mark any discrepancies on the driver’s inventory list before you sign it. Note any damage to the outside of cartons.
Unpack any items of high value, such as silver or art, immediately.
If you want the movers to unpack for you, be sure to inform them prior to delivery.
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