Are pets welcome ? And is there an extra charge?

If you have animals in your life, your search for an apartment or rental home might be a little more difficult, especially if your pets are exotic. Many apartment buildings in Nha Trang don’t accept pets.

Ask questions in advance about the pet policy and what your furry pals are going to cost you before you sign a lease. Many landlords and management companies charge renters a pet deposit, a nonrefundable pet fee, or even a monthly pet rent as part of a lease agreement (if you rent house, villa,… you can get the pets.)

What’s the lease term? What does the lease say about the security deposit? Is the security deposit refundable?

What’s the lease term?

Don’t need to rent property until 12 months, while many residential leases last for 12 months, don’t automatically assume that your lease will last a year. Find out specifically how long your lease term is because you’ll be obligated for rent for the duration, and protected from changes such as the landlord raising rent.

While a month-to-month lease can give you much more flexibility, you’re vulnerable to a landlord evicting you or raising rent soon after you move in. A longer lease provides more peace of mind that your housing situation will be stable. If you plan to stay put, you may even want to ask if the landlord would be open to a multi-year lease.

What does the lease say about the security deposit?

As a condition of moving in, you’ll almost definitely need to put down a security deposit in case of to cover any rent arrears, bills owing or damage beyond normal wear and tear at the end of the tenancy, it’s a guarantee that you’re going to take care of the property you’re renting. Find out exactly how much that deposit is. You also want to know when your landlord can keep your deposit.

Typically, your state’s landlord-tenant laws set basic guidelines regarding when your landlord needs to return your deposit and under what circumstances your landlord can take deductions for repairs. However, make sure your lease doesn’t include any special provisions giving your landlord more power to retain your money. You must know what the situations are before signing the lease to ensure you are able to get the deposit back when you move out

Is the security deposit refundable?

Make sure you have clarity about what part of the money you give your landlord upfront for the apartment or other rental is an administration fee, and what is a deposit.

Some deposits are fully refundable if the apartment is returned in good condition after the renter moves out, and some are nonrefundable.

If the deposit is significant, ask important questions before move-in day about what conditions the lease spells out for the security deposit’s return, how maintenance requests are handled, and if there are any additional fees.

How many people can live here, and what is the rules for guests?

If you’re planning to live with roommates or have a large family, make sure you comply with the tenant occupancy standards of the apartment before renting.

Most buildings don’t allow more than two people per bedroom of an apartment, including children. Also, if you plan to have frequent or long-term guests at your rental, ask questions about the landlord’s guest policy, make sure to check what your lease agreement says first.

“Some agreements allow for additional guests for an express period of time, some require approval after a certain number of days, and some charge additional money after a certain number of days. The guest terms will affect whom and how long someone can stay in your place. Worst case is a long term guest turns into a violation of the lease agreement and the landlord seeks eviction.”

What is included in the rent, and what fees will I have to pay?

Finding out what utilities are included is absolutely essential. Rent is just part of your living for the month—the biggest part—so you need to be sure you can comfortably cover all other costs of living in that space, including rent payments, and utility bills such as electricity, water, sewer, gas, garbage pickup, Internet, and cable TV, parking fee…

Most apartments will have utilities fee such as administration fee, heat, water, gas, electricity, trash, internet, and even pest control can be separate costs from your rent. Be sure to ask questions about which of those services, tenants will need to set up and pay for. These fees could add several hundred dollars a month to your bill and you don’t want to be surprised when you move in to find you can’t afford parking or access to that awesome gym or rooftop pool.

Or “Try to negotiate these fees and you can sometimes shave off some of the cost.”

Let’s break down the list (If you are an average user with an average unit):
– Electric: Basically it is all about how much you use air-condition and fridge, here in Vietnam. Plan on spending up to $30-40 extra a month.
– Water: $7
– Gas: Usually around $5.
– Internet: Approximately $15/month
– TV: $5/month

What’s the rent?

It’s very important to know how much you’ll have to pay on a monthly basis. You should also find out when the rent is due — will it be the first of the month? — how long the grace period is if you’re late, and when rent increases can occur. 

Typically, your rent cannot go up for the duration of the lease term, but if you have a short-term lease, the landlord can increase the rent on a periodic basis if your lease allows it. 

18 Things You Need To Know Before Renting A Property

  1. Research the area.
  2. Discuss pets early.
  3. Check out the white goods.
  4. Don’t forget to check the water pressure too.
  5. Find out if your contract contains a release clause.
  6. Ask the landlord if they will repaint the walls before you move in.
  7. Conduct a thorough inventory.
  8. Find out how much money will need to be paid in advance.
  9. Check if you will need a guarantor.
  10. Challenge any terms and conditions you’re not happy with.
  11. Find out where your deposit will be held.
  12. And when it comes to your money, know your rights.
  13. Understand how rent increases work.
  14. Remember, if you’re moving into a room rather than a house, you still have the same rights.
  15. But things vary slightly if your name is not on the lease.
  16. Understand what an estate agent is allowed to charge you for.
  17. Ask for everything in writing.
  18. And read the tenancy agreement thoroughly.

What is the difference between a real estate agent and a real estate broker?

Most states require real estate sales professionals to be licensed by the state, so that they can control education and experience requirements and have a central authority to resolve consumer problems.

The terminology used to identify real estate professionals varies a little from state to state. Brokers are generally required to have more education and experience than real estate salespersons or agents.

The person you normally deal with is a real estate agent or salesperson. The salesperson is licensed by the state, but must work for a broker. All listings are placed in the broker’s name, not the salesperson’s.

A broker can deal directly with home buyers and sellers, or can have a staff of salespersons or agents working for him or her.

Why should I use a real estate salesperson?

A real estate salesperson is more than just a “sales person.” They act on your behalf as your agent, providing you with advice and guidance and doing a job – helping you buy or sell a home. While it is true they get paid for what they do, so do other professions that provide advice, guidance, and have a service to sell –such as Certified Public Accountants and Attorneys

The Internet has opened up a world of information that wasn’t previously available to homebuyers and seller. The data on listings available for sale is almost current – but not quite. There are times when you need the most current information about what has sold or is for sale, and the only way to get that is with an agent.

If you’re selling a home, you gain access to the most buyers by being listed in the Multiple Listing Service. Only a licensed real estate agent who is a member of your local MLS can get you listed there – which then gets you automatically listed on some of the major real estate web sites. If you’re buying or selling a home, the MLS is your agent’s best tool.

However, the role of an agent has changed in the last couple of years. In the past, agents were the only way home buyers and sellers could access information. Now agents are evolving. Because today’s home buyers and sellers are so much better informed than in the past, expertise and ability are becoming more important.

The real estate agent is becoming more of a “guide” than a “salesperson” — your personal representative in buying or selling a home.

I have a family friend who is a Realtor. I like her and she is a help but she gives me one price to sell my home for and I think it is too low. So I called another agent who suggested a price more in line with my expectations. Who do I choose?

You might want to consult a couple more Realtors on the market value of your home. Most of the estimates should be in the same ballpark.

It could be that your friend is being more honest with you about the value of your home and the other Realtor gave you a higher number because he already knew you expected it. This is called “Buying a Listing” and is the subject of an article on our web site.

Or it could simply be that your friend is a good friend, but not that great of a real estate agent.

Mixing business and friendships is always risky to the friendship. On the other hand, if your friend is truly competent and was providing wise advice, she may be offended if you ignore the advice and choose another agent.

I have to make a choice between an updated home in an older neighborhood or a newer home in a more modern neighborhood. The home in the older neighborhood has almost everything I want and is much larger, but which makes the most sense as an investment?

If your goal is to buy a home for it’s resale value and the one you are thinking of buying in the older neighborhood is at the upper end of values for that neighborhood, then it may not be the wisest choice. If it is similar or lower in price to the others, then there should be no problem, because pricing should be considered in relation to the local neighborhood and not compared to homes in other neighborhoods (for the most part)

Plus, is it a neighborhood on the decline, or are others going to be fixing things up, too, so that it is a neighborhood that is improving? It could turn out to be a very good deal as long as you don’t “overpay” because of the recent improvements.

Remember that you also buy a home for it’s value to you as a “home,” and that is something else you should consider. Which neighborhood would you AND your family feel most comfortable in?

When buying a new home, what upgrades should we go for? What holds the most value? Do we upgrade the lot? Pick more square footage in the house? Add an extra bedroom?, etc.

A lot depends on why you are buying the house. Are you buying it mostly as a home or mostly as an investment? There is a difference.

For the most part, upgrades are high-profit items for builders. They aren’t designed to enhance the value of the house, but make you happier with the house you do buy.

If you are looking at your home as an investment, then you buy from the smaller to medium size in the tract and spend only a minimal amount on upgrades. If you are looking at your purchase as a home, then you select upgrades that will enhance your quality of living.

One rule of thumb is to always upgrade the carpet and padding.