Finding a single-family home to rent in Reno & Sparks can be a difficult process. We simply do not have enough supply to meet the demand. Here are a few expert tips that will give you a leg up in this competitive process:
1) Don’t get scammed: It is sad that this is my first tip but according to MarketWatch Magazine roughly 5.2 million people reported financial loss due to a rental scam last year. Double check the credentials of the broker or landlord and never wire money until you’ve seen the property and signed a lease agreement. Finally, if it sounds too good to be true it probably is.
2) Start your search early:Homes with the best price and location tend to rent before the 15thof each month. Also, you should begin your search at least 60 days before your move. In low inventory markets it is not uncommon to see renters securing properties a full month before they need it.
3) Tour the neighborhoods you want to live in: Online searches can be helpful, but when rental properties are scarce it is quite common that landlords simply post a sign rather than advertising on Zillow, Craig’s List, etc.
4) Have great references:Preferably with people that will answer the phone or call your new prospective landlord back promptly. Contact your references yourself to ensure they understand the urgency of the situation.
5) Credit problems:Today more than ever landlords have the luxury of picking and choosing from the cream-of-the-crop. This can create a real challenge for consumers with a low credit score. If that is the case for you write a thoughtful cover letter explaining your predicament. Also, consider offering up a larger security deposit or slightly more per month if you’re in a competitive situation.
6) Keep an open mind when it comes to lease terms:Landlords really dislike vacancies over the holidays. As a prospective tenant, consider offering a longer or shorter lease term to ensure that your landlord won’t have a vacancy when he or she least wants it.
7) Hire a Professional: There are a few agencies in town that specialize in placing tenants. The agency fees are paid by the tenant and the amount varies but rental finders can be a big help for those in a pinch. Please let me know if you need a referral for this type of service provider.
It’s safe to assume that your landlord’s property (the house and grounds) will be properly insured. However, your personal property will not be insured unless you purchase rental insurance. I think that’s 8 tips but that last tip is “on the house”.