A lease you can live with

Follow these tips before entering into an apartment lease:

  • If there’s anything you don’t understand, don’t sign; take it home and think it over.
  • Ask the landlord if your roommates can co-sign the lease, making them equally responsible.
  • Ask someone familiar with leases to help you understand the “lawyer language.”
  • See how much notice is needed before moving out and the penalty if you break your lease.

And, avoid these mistakes:

  • If utilities won’t be covered by your rent, don’t include them in your monthly spending plan.
  • Avoid a written lease if you can. Make a “handshake” deal with the landlord instead.
  • If you have roommates, never let them read the lease.
  • If the rent’s affordable now, don’t worry how often the landlord’s allowed to increase it.

Interested in becoming a homeowner? See the topic Buying a Home in the Hands on Banking Adults course.

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