Investing in a new home can be very tricky especially abroad since you don’t know the regulations that well. That is why so many people opt for renting instead of buying. Besides that, renting allows you to be more flexible and not to worry about property taxes, repairs, or maintenance.
Even if you do plan to buy your own property, renting in that city can be a helpful trial run to see if the environment fits you. You’ve probably already imagined yourself sitting on the porch of your new home and enjoying the sound of the waves, but then it hit you that you don’t know much about renting a property abroad.
No matter where you decide to go, there are several important things that you should keep in mind when trying to find a place to rent overseas. Considering that you’ll be in a foreign country these five things will ensure that you’ll have a pleasant and safe stay.
1. Inquire about Rental Management Company
Your primary point of contact in a foreign country will be the management company responsible for the property. That is why you should find out whether they are trustworthy and reliable.
Google the company and the owner and read all the reviews. If the feedback is mostly negative, you should consider renting a different property with a better rental manager.
You don’t want to end up in a foreign country with no one to rely on. In case you have any problems with the property, you’ll need to have a committed management company which will be willing to take care of any complication.
It can be very beneficial if you also read through the lease and make sure that the obligations of the rental manager are clearly defined.
2. Understand the Payment Terms
When it comes to paying for the rented property, you need to be very clear about two things: the rental company’s policy on the deposit and their policy on rent payment.
Paying the deposit
The general rule is that you should pay the deposit in the amount of one month’s rent and you pay that in addition to the first month's rent. Sometimes the deposit can be one and a half month’s rent or even two months' rent.
You should also be aware of whether you pay the deposit directly into the owner’s bank account or you pay a rental manager.
What you should prepare yourself to is that there is a chance that you won’t get that deposit back. This usually happens in the case of long-term rental because items in the house do get worn out or they find some reason to decrease the deposit.
If you want to avoid such a situation, you can add a clause in the lease that will specifically state in which cases they can decrease the deposit.
Make sure that it is established in the lease what’s included in your rent and what’s not. You don’t want them to add up to your bill the building or homeowner’s association fees, water expense, utilities, phone, internet, etc.
You also need to establish how, where, and to whom you pay which bills each month.
It is advisable that you find out previous renter’s average costs so that you can have a general idea about how much will your monthly cost be.
3. Find Out Which Documents You’ll Need
Every country has a different policy on renting the property to foreigners. You should investigate whether you need to prepare some paperwork or you’ll be able to simply rent an apartment with one signature.
While some countries will demand that you provide dozens of documents from recent bank statements, pay stubs, reference letters, and even letters of guaranty, in other countries, it will be enough just to sign a lease and pay the deposit.
If you don`t know where to get documents translated or look for document translation companies, you can always find help online. Such services as PickWriters are here to save your time and help you choose the best translation company.
4. Have Knowledge of What’s Included in the Property Rental
When you see an ad which states “furnished apartment” you’ll get a certain idea of what comes with that property but can vary from case to case.
What is furnished and what unfurnished can differ depending on the state or even on the owner’s point of view.
In some places, “unfurnished” means that there is even no refrigerator and no stove.
Before you decide to rent a property ask in detail what’s included.
Don’t hesitate because you don’t want to seem aggressive. That will be your home in the following period and you have every right to know.
Ask about all the important details such as which appliances are included, does the apartment come with the air-conditioning unit, do you need to bring dishware, glassware, and utensils, etc.
5. Use a Lawyer
Lastly, never sign anything before your lawyer approves it.
Unless you are very familiar with rental regulations, you should most definitely hire a lawyer to take a look at the documents before you sign them. Especially because you will be renting a property in a foreign country.
You never know whether there is something missing such as a sales clause which is concerned with your protection if the owner decides to sell the apartment. A lawyer will warn you about these things and help you to include all the important elements.
In case you are renting a property in a country whose language you don’t speak, it can be easier to find a bilingual lawyer than to hire both a translator for the lease and the lawyer.
The lawyer needs to review whether everything is clearly defined and if your rights as a tenant are fulfilled.
Over to You
It is completely understandable that moving to a foreign country can be stressful and demanding. That is why you need to prepare yourself so that you can ease the pressure and be confident about this big move.
As long as you keep in mind these five crucial tips, you’ll be able to handle all the hassle and enjoy your new home without any worries once you move in.