You guys are seriously trooping along in the moving process! Onto this week’s topic of my moving series with FlatRate Moving, getting approved and signing your lease.
Of all the steps in the moving to NYC process, this step is generally the fastest! The same way the market goes fast, brokers and landlords want to get you approved fast. That’s good news! Because when you find your perfect little place, you want to know if it’s going to be yours, and you want to know fast! At least I do.. I’m impatient!
If you’re applying for a co-op or condo building there might be a few more steps that will draw this process out, but for the most part as a renter you’re dealing with just normal rental listings.
I also say that this step is fast because at this point you won’t be tracking down all of your paperwork because you took my advice and have everything ready to go ;-)
The way this process generally works is you will submit your renter’s packet and application to your broker as well as your application fee and deposit – amount varies by apartment/landlord. Once you turn in your paperwork your broker then does some behind-the-scenes magic by getting in touch with the landlord and making your case to be a good tenant as well as helps with the required credit check. In my experience, if your paperwork looks good and you have good credit you can find out that you’ve been approved as soon as a few hours later. YIPPEE! Sometimes you’ll hit a few bumps in the road, or they’ll want to call your references or have a doggie interview (yes, that really happened to me). Even then though, the process usually doesn’t take more than 24 hours if it’s during the week.
From there, hopefully you’ll get the green light from your broker and the next step will be scheduling to sign the lease. For all three of my apartments, I was approved and signed my lease within 3 days. Brokers and landlords want to lock you in and seal the deal. Plus, they’d like to get paid as well for putting their work in!
Once you’re approved, your broker will let you know the rest of the amounts that you’ll need to get certified checks for at your lease signing. You can generally plan on the following:
- First month’s rent
- Security deposit
- Broker’s fee
Depending on how much you put down for your application deposit, the amount might be credited toward one of your payments, whereas other landlords will return your initial deposit and request a separate check. No matter the details, your broker should let you know the rest of the details.
In terms of signing your lease, I’ve had some brokers who have walked me through the lease line-by-line and others who have simply given me the basics and had me sign. I’m certainly not a lawyer so I can’t advise you on things to look out for in your lease, but I can certainly suggest that you actually read the contract you’re signing. To be honest, I’ve mostly been on the lookout to see if I was allowed to paint the walls or not, lol… If you have a pet though make sure that you are given a pet rider if your lease requires one.
Other things worth asking for when you sign your lease are
- Landlord contact information: This might sound silly but my second apartment Inever received my landlord’s contact info.
- Super’s information: Does the building’s Super live-in or have a schedule for when they’ll be on the premises? Also find out the protocol for requesting repairs.
- Rent procedures: How will you be paying rent? Mailing? Dropping off with the Super? Some buildings’ processes vary so it’s worth asking about.
- Picking up keys: If your lease begins at a later date than when you sign your lease make a plan for when and where you will be receiving your keys.
And now you are officially a renter in New York City! AHHHH! Now onto the next part of the process, planning and actually moving! See you next week :-)