Following on our last article on apartment hunting tips, here are 5 more tips to help you make the right decision so that you may escape your dilemmas:

Apartment Hunting Tip #5 : Meet Your New Neighbours

Don’t limit your interactions to the landlord while apartment hunting. Take any chance you can get to interact with the tenants. This will give you the opportunity to know your future neighbours and decide if this group of people is fit for your convenience.

Apartment Hunting Tip #6 : Meet Your Roommates

If you aren’t looking for an apartment but for a room, this means the other rooms in the apartment will go to your roommates. You must also look for any chance to get to know them before making your decision. Knowing your roommates is even more important than knowing your neighbours as you will need to interact with them on a daily basis.

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Apartment Hunting Tip #7 : Think about Your Pets

Can you live without your pets or will you die without them? Most apartment complexes regulate pets in one way or another. Some will charge the tenant extra for keeping pets while others will prohibit the entrance to pets of any kind. If you have pets and move to your new apartment with them, it is necessary to bring this situation up to the landlord. This will allow the landlord to explain to you the rules that apply to pets and whether or not keeping yours is even a possibility.

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Apartment Hunting Tip #8 : Take Notice of Extra Costs

Paying the rents and bills might not be the only costs you will incur in during your stay at the new apartment. As discussed above, certain apartment complexes may charge you an extra fee for extra privileges such as parking and keeping pets. Your rent may also include some utilities such as water, phone and internet access. Therefore, I highly recommend that you ask the landlord which bills he/she will cover and which ones you will need to take care of.

Apartment Hunting Tip #9 : Be Mindful of Bills

Splitting the utility bills between neighbours/roommates is often the norm. However, this can prove to be complicated. Different people will use different utilities to different extents. Someone who requires to be connected to a personal computer through most of the day will drastically increase the electricity bill, for example. This is one of the reasons why you should meet the people already living in the apartment complex beforehand.

Even though the most common way to handle this is to simply split the bills in equal parts between the neighbours/roommates, a personalized split based on a previous analysis on who uses which bills to the largest extent could also be used with the agreement of you and your neighbours/roommates. This would ensure a fairer split for everyone.

Apartment Hunting Tip #10 : Don’t Just See the Complex. See Your Apartment!

Although the project may look beautiful, always ask to see the apartment you’ll be renting/buying before closing the deal. Not all apartments are made equal and the model apartment isn’t always a faithful rendition of yours. Seeing the apartment you’ll be living in before signing the lease can help you avoid disappointment in the future.

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C.E.O @ The New Savvy
Anna Haotanto is passionate about finance, education, women empowerment and children’s issues. Anna has been featured in CNBC, Forbes, The Straits Times, Business Insider, INC and The Peak Singapore. She was nominated and selected for FORTUNE Most Powerful Women conference in 2016 (Asia) and 2015 (San Francisco, Next Gen). Anna has 10 years of experience in the financial sector and is currently a Director in Tera Capital. Her previous work experience includes positions at Citigroup, United Overseas Bank, a regional role in Business Monitor and a boutique private equity firm based in Shanghai. She graduated from Singapore Management University (Finance and Quantitative Finance).