5 Things to Do When You Move Into a Rental Unit - Baltimore Post-ExaminerBaltimore Post-Examiner

5 Things to Do When You Move Into a Rental Unit

Moving into a rental is more work than you think. It’s just as much work as moving into a home. From checking off your move-in checklist and transferring utilities to changing your address and updating your renter’s insurance, you should address each of these steps as soon as possible. Getting these tasks done will allow you to move in easily and settle into your new home before you know it.

Check Off Your Move-In Checklist

You may just want to unpack and get it done with. Before you open the first box, take some time to look over your move-in checklist. It’s often easy for you to get off track and not keep up with your checklist. It’s much easier to see what you forgot to do before moving in, if you keep an eye on things.

The inspection form must be included on your move-in checklist. This important form shows the proof of the apartment’s condition when you moved in. If your landlord or property manager tries to charge you fees when you move out, it’s the one thing you can use to handle disputes.

Update Your Rental Insurance

The next thing you need to do is to update your rental insurance. In this case, you may need to open a new account or update your current rental policy. Keep in mind that your renters insurance costs may change when you move. If you don’t have rental insurance, find a basic policy that protects you and your belongings from fire, floods, mold, natural disasters, theft, and other situations.

If you already have rental insurance, your policy will be updated depending on your new living location. Renter’s insurance is sometimes offered through your landlord or property manager. Sometimes they have a preference as to who they want to work with.

Transfer or Set Up Your Utilities

The utilities (heat, lights, water, etc.) may not be on when you move in. If this is the case, contact each utility company to start each of the services for your unit. You may have to open a new account or transfer your old account if you’re within the same state or county.

Don’t know who to call? Your landlord or property manager should have the names and numbers of who to call in your area. Most rentals need to have all of their utilities turned on before you move in. You still need to call each of these companies and transfer each one to your name. Just because a certain utility is working doesn’t always mean it hasn’t been turned on or transferred. Sometimes former tenants have forgotten to cancel their service.

Get clarification on which utilities are included in your rent. Some property managers may help cover the costs of water or heat. You may be responsible for electricity, gas, internet, television, and other fees. If you’re moving into a condominium, home association fees, pest control fees, lawn repair fees, and landscaping fees may or may not be covered.

Give Your New Address

You need to change your address with the United States Postal Service. You should also give your new address to your bank institution or credit union, insurance companies, place of employment, and your children’s school. You may also need to update your address with any stores you shop with online.
Changing your address with the U.S. Postal Service can be done down at your local Post Office or online. By changing your address, you’ll ensure that all of your mail will be mailed to your new home within 60 days. Don’t forget to update your address with your healthcare providers and tax agencies.

Make Your Rental Your Home

Everything is unpacked. Your utilities are on and transferred over to your new home. You updated your rental policy and account information. Now you need to take some time to turn your rental unit into a home. Even though you’re renting, you can still decorate it to your liking. Search Pinterest for décor ideas to transform your rental into a place you love. Don’t forget to look at the landscape and start working on getting your yard in the shape you can live with as well.

It’s also time to get comfortable with your surroundings. Get to know your neighbors. Check out the hot spots in your neighborhood. Find out where the libraries, local shops, grocery stores, museums, theaters, churches, and other businesses are located.

Make sure you’re within access of the police department, fire department, ambulance, post office, DMV, and bank so you can access these places whenever you need to, making this the home that you want to be in is easy with the tips above.

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