Why Not Stay Awhile? How to Renew Your Lease
Love where you live? Have great neighbors and the local amenities are fabulous? Why move? Renewing your lease can be an economical move, not needing to plan and pay for a move or disrupt your life with extra time off work. If you’re looking to stay put for a while, here’s everything you need to know about the renewal process.
How to Renew Your Lease
When your lease is a few months from ending, chances are your landlord or apartment manager will ask you if you want to renew your lease. Here’s what you need to do:
Mark Your Calendar with Important Dates
First, you need to know when your lease is up. Take a look at your copy of the apartment lease and note the termination date. Mark this date on your calendar.
Read Your Lease Carefully
Find out when you need to notify your apartment manager of your decision to renew your lease or move out. Do you need to notify them 30 or 60 days in advance? Mark that date on your calendar. If you miss that date, the lease could auto-renew forcing you to keep paying for the apartment.
Talk to Your Apartment Manager or Landlord
Before the deadline to renew or terminate your lease, talk to your landlord or apartment community manager about your options. If rent rates are changing, you should be informed. If you like your apartment community, but find you need more or less space, inquire whether you can move to a different unit within the community. Ask for any agreements made to be placed in writing. Terms should be reflected in your new lease. Don’t be afraid to negotiate on the rent.
Make a Decision
Once you have all this information gathered, you can make an informed decision. Decide whether or not you want to renew your apartment lease. If you decide to renew, then follow the rest of this article.
Write a Letter
Once your rental decision is made, submit a letter to your apartment management team informing them of your decision to renew or terminate your lease. If you have made any special arrangements with your apartment manager for a deal on a rental rate or a move to a new unit in the community, include this information and any supporting documents. Keep a copy of these documents for yourself.
Carefully Read Your New Lease
If you have decided to renew your lease, you most likely will be asked to sign a new lease. This lease will reflect any change in terms and designate the period of the new agreement (one or two years, or month to month, for instance.) Read the new lease carefully and make sure that you are comfortable with the language. Even if it looks to be the same as the lease you already signed, just with different dates, you want to read carefully to be sure. Read everything so you're not caught off-guard by any new terms or requirements that might get added in.
Sign Your New Lease
Once you have thoroughly read the new apartment lease and are comfortable with the terms, sign the document to make things official. An official apartment community representative will sign it, as well.
Do you have more questions on the renting process, finding that perfect apartment or what to do after you’ve signed the lease? Check out Apartment Guide’s Renter’s Toolkit — it’s everything you ever wanted to know about renting all in one place!