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NMS 1548 Sixth
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8 Red Flags An Apartment Is NOT For You | NMS 1548 Sixth

8 Red Flags An Apartment Is NOT For You

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Touring apartments is an exciting step in finding your new home. It gives you a chance to picture yourself living and working in a particular space, taking advantage of the amenities, and becoming part of a community. As you tour an apartment, you will probably have a list of things you want and need in a new apartment. But it’s also important to keep an eye out for things you don’t want or won’t work for your lifestyle.  


Here are eight red flags that an apartment is NOT for you: 


It’s not accessible  

One of the biggest factors in deciding whether or not an apartment is for you is accessibility. If you’re in a wheelchair, use a walker, or have other mobility issues, it’s essential that your apartment is accessible for you. If you’re not able to physically see for yourself that the apartment that you would rent would be accessible for you, that's a red flag. Don’t take the leasing agent's word for it. If they can’t show you an apartment that meets your needs, you might want to look somewhere else. 


It’s not convenient  

You may find an apartment for rent that has awesome community amenities, spacious floor plans, and high-end finishes, but if the location doesn’t make sense for your lifestyle, it’s not the right apartment. Your apartment should be close to where you work, go to school, and spend most of your time. If it checks all of the boxes but means a commute that adds more stress to your life, it’s not the right fit. 


It’s not well maintained 

As you take your tour, pay close attention to how the building is maintained.  

  • Does it look like it needs a paint job?  

  • How is the landscaping?  

  • Do the shared amenities look like they are taken care of?  

  • Are there out-of-order signs on a lot of the amenities?  


There's a difference between one space or feature needing repair and the entire apartment community being in disarray. If you notice a lot of out-of-order signs or areas that need to be cleaned up, ask about the timeline for these repairs. This also opens up a conversation about how the maintenance request process works. If you notice that the property looks like it needs a lot of work, this is a red flag. 


You don’t feel welcome 

This is a big red flag and should not be ignored. It's not always something that you can physically see, it's more of a Feeling. Your leasing agent, or the person who gives you the tour of your apartment, should be warm, knowledgeable, professional, and friendly. They should answer all of your questions and if they don't have the answer, be willing to find someone who does. They should make you feel like you want to live there and that they want you to be part of their Community. If you don't feel this way, go with your gut.  


You can only tour the model 

As you tour apartments for rent, it's important to see the actual unit you would be living in. The model unit is going to be in perfect condition of course, and offer the best of the best in amenities and finishes. If you're not allowed to see any other unit except the model, this could be another red flag. If they're not willing to show you the actual unit we want to rent, it could mean they've got something to hide. Ask to come back another time and see the unit and if they are still hesitant, it might be time to schedule at or somewhere else.  


The screening process is unimpressive  

As you tore your apartment, ask about the screening process. Ask about what is required from all renters to live there. If there is no process or no screening, this could be a big red flag. You want to be sure that the people you're living with and around have been looked into by the management team. Yes, not having to submit to background screenings or credit checks may be convenient, but it also means that they set a very low bar for their residence and that is also a red flag. 


There are rules you can’t live with 

All apartment communities have their own sets of rules. By signing the lease agreement, you are agreeing to these rules. Before you sign anything, read the apartment guidelines carefully. If you like to have people over, an apartment that doesn't allow guests or doesn't make it easy to have guests may not be the right fit for you. If you have a pet you need an apartment that welcomes pets. Ask about the rules regarding how you can furnish and decorate your apartment, who can park where, and what you can expect in terms of other people (maintenance, office staff, pest control, etc) having access to your apartment.  


If you read any rules that just don't sit right with you, don't sign the lease. If you sign the lease without reading the rules, or sign the lease with the intent to break the rules, you're only going to cause more stress and trouble for yourself.  


Bottom Line 

Before you tore your next Santa Monica apartment, it's important to have a list of things you want, things you need, and deal breakers. Knowing these red flags will help you walk into your apartment tour with intentionality, and help you make a confident and informed decision. If you haven't already, schedule a tour of NMS 1548 Sixth today

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