LOS ANGELES, CA – In France there is a real estate agency that are turning viewing apartments into a game -the listings are getting turned into escape rooms –where they lock you into the room and make it a game where you have to find your way out. The idea behind it is so that way you get to know the space more. And while apartment hunting tends to be stressful, with the right tricks up your sleeve, there are some ways to make the whole experience more fun. The Local Records Office suggests ways to search for your next rental in a new light.

Questions that Every Tenant Should Ask a Landlord

First off, you need the right tools and lifehacker.com shares the five most popular sources people use as their favorite ways to search for a new pad.

Be sure to do your research and find the apartment that is worth visiting. While using these great tools to find a rental that is in your price range and your preferred neighborhood of choice, makes it so much easier in narrowing your search to find the best place, you can also use the filters to get your most wanted amenities, and even regular updates when the availability changes.

While having the luxury of driving through your most wanted areas to live, as it is best to check out the neighborhood by doing a drive-through before scheduling a visit with the property owner.

Spend some time in the neighborhood to get to know the local shops, restaurants and do not be afraid to ask any locals what they think about the community. Also, take a drive after sunset or after-hours to get a better feel for what the area is like (whether it is quiet or lively) and if it’s somewhere you’d want to come home to after work.

Schedule a visit with the property owner

Call the landlord or property owner to schedule a visit. While most cities are flourishing with more people, the apartments in the best areas are getting swapped up much faster, so don’t waste any time but don’t feel compelled to rush –as new units will come on the market regularly. Find out how popular the apartment is by asking the landlord to find out how likely the unit will be gone before you get there. While a number of landlords prefer to do business by E-mail, or schedule open houses, speaking to someone directly by phone is the best way to get answers.

Make a list of questions before your first viewing

When a unit is high in demand, it is important to know that your first apartment viewing could very well be your last. While you already know the cost, if there is parking included and the distance to your job or any major roads, the transit systems and amenities included, do your best to not waste any time on your visit.

  • – How long has the unit been empty? How long did the last tenant stay?
  • – What year was the building built / how old is the property? Have there been any major changes or renovations?
  • – How old is the wiring? Can I see the fuse box?
  • – Do all of the appliances work? How old are they?
  • – Are there any major repairs coming up in the next year? Will any repairs be completed before I move in?
  • – What utilities are included? Is heating/cooling individually controlled?
  • – Who will be responsible for maintenance and repairs? What about emergencies?
  • – Who’s responsible for pest control?

More questions for the landlord here

Coming from a family of real estate property rentals, I have also learned a few tricks up my sleeves by checking there is hot water by running the sinks, flushing the toilet(s) and also making sure there are no hidden fees.