Is it must for a tenant to inspect a property before moving in?

Updated: Apr 14, 2020

You have a right to inspect carefully an apartment or house before you pay a deposit or rent on it and especially before you sign any agreement that will bind you and have legal consequences. Take along your friends or family members to help you and be sure to do your inspection in the daytime so that you will be more likely to see everything. If possible, try to rent an apartment or house that is vacant and ready for immediate occupancy.

It is highly risky, for example, to look at a model apartment on a document or a photo, usually in the best condition, and then pay for it without inspecting it. From my experience in the property market, don’t be so naive in trusting people unfamiliar to you to make a tenancy decision for you.

Sometimes tenants are promised that apartments or houses in poor condition (e.g. unpainted or with electrical faults) will be ready on move-in day, only to find out the work has not been done or has been done poorly and that the premises are dirty yet they have already paid. This will start your tenancy on the wrong note and may end up breaking your heart and feeling short-changed.

Always be sure to check the layout of the apartment or house carefully. And ask yourself whether

  1. The house is the right size and design for you,

  2. Can your furniture fit in?

  3. Has your spouse or roommate seen and approved it?

  4. Do the appliances work properly in case of furnished apartments; are the toilets flushing properly and whether there are any signs of leaking faucets.

Finally, tenants should request the landlord or the agent to provide a written list of existing damages to the premises, such as marred walls, damaged woodwork or mantels, broken or damaged fixtures, and cracked window glass.

Obviously, the tenants themselves should carefully examine the apartment to make sure all such damages are on the landlord’s check-list, that the list is signed and dated and get a copy of the same.

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