5 Things You Don’t Know About Rent

No matter where you live, there are probably plenty of places for rent. From tiny studio apartments in the city to spacious homes in the suburbs, these rentals can be excellent values, but only if you know the facts and understand your rights. Here are 5 things you may not know about rent and rentals.

#1. Your Landlord Has Insurance, But That Doesn’t Mean You’re Covered

Many renters assume, wrongly it turns out, that the property insurance their landlords are required to cover provides protection for the things they have inside the home or apartment. Unfortunately, that is not the case, and many renters have learned that lesson the hard way. If you rent, you need to purchase renter’s insurance to protect your possessions. Renter’s insurance is not expensive, but not having it could be costly indeed.

#2. It Can Make Financial Sense

Many people think that buying is always better than renting, but that is not necessarily the case. If you move frequently for work or plan to stay in your home for less than five years, renting can actually be more economical than owning. Before you buy a home, you should always do an analysis to compare the relative value of renting versus buying. You just might be surprised at what you find. When you consider expenses like real estate taxes and repairs, you might find that renting is actually the best value.

#3. Renters Pay Real Estate Taxes Too

If you are a homeowner, you are no doubt familiar with real estate taxes. Those taxes can be quite high, costing thousands of dollars a year and making budgeting difficult for even middle class homeowners. If you rent a home or apartment, you might think you have escaped the property tax burden, but think again. You can be fairly certain that your landlord has built the cost of his or her real estate taxes into the price of the rent.

#4. Your Landlord is Probably Not Making a Killing

When you write your monthly rent check, you may think you are financing a rich lifestyle for your landlord. In reality, your landlord is probably not making as much as you think. Owning rental properties can in fact be a good investment, but it is an investment that comes with lots of expenses. From real estate taxes and insurance to repairs and maintenance, your landlord incurs a lot of costs – costs that come directly out of your monthly rent check.

#5. You Have More Protections Than You Think

Renters often feel like they are at the mercy of their landlords, but there are laws that protect apartment dwellers and prevent them from being taken advantage of. There are laws requiring notice before an eviction proceeding can move forward – even if you are late with the rent you may be protected for a time. There are also laws protecting renters with children, so you may have addition protection if you are taking care of a family. If you are having problems with your landlord, it is a good idea to research the local laws and regulations and arm yourself with the facts. There are a lot of myths and misconceptions about renting, but learning the truth can make your experience a lot easier. Whether you are renting your first apartment or looking for a home for your growing family, understanding the facts about rent is the best way to protect yourself and your interests.

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