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Trulia, Other/Just Looking in San Francisco, CA

What are some tips for renters before signing a lease?

Asked by Trulia, San Francisco, CA Tue Mar 6, 2012

What are some things to be aware of? What are some tips when negotiating a lease?

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Excellent question. I've represented tenants and landlords alike.
The most important thing you can do is read the entire lease carefully before signing it.
Make sure you can meet and agree with the stipulations therein.
You particularly have to be careful whenever a property is being managed by a Corporate Relocation type
company - often times their "standard" leases have all kinds of provisions beneficial to their client -
but can be very tough on the tenant.

Hopefully you are being represented by a licensed agent in the transaction for your protection.
If you are being represented by a Realtor, they can pull comps on rental properties just like we do with
sale properties to get a good idea of what similar properties are leasing for.

I recently represented a client (a Physician) on a rather expensive lease of nearly $ 4000/month
and because the property was managed by a large Corporate management type company - they
had a clause in the lease which would have allowed the Owners of the property (their client) the
ability to move back into the property with 30 days notice if their overseas temporary assignment was
cancelled or otherwise cut short. My client (the prospective tenant) said "No way...I need a set and defined
lease term of at least 1 year duration...or no deal." This was reasonable. I explained to the Management Company that my client was going to great expense to move into this property and didn't want to be faced with the possibility of being asked to move out in Month 3 or 4 of the lease. Fortunately the Owners of the property agreed to strike this particular clause in the Contract - so we were able to close the deal !

One final thing - make sure you notice who (you or the landlord) will be responsible for any yard/garden care, pool, and any maintenance issues that arise during the lease.

Good Luck !
Jay Narey ABR, ALHS
Keller Williams - Preston Rd.
jaynarey@kw.com
972.468.5462
Web Reference: http://www.jaynarey.com
3 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Mar 6, 2012
1. Here in Dallas there is NO negotiating on the rental amount.
2. Always use a Realtor
3. Many rental scams out there
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Mar 6, 2012
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