Apartment tours are great opportunities to familiarize yourself with your potential new apartment, the area, and most importantly, ask your real estate agent questions!

Here are 7 important questions you’ll want to ask during your apartment tour:

1. What utilities are included in the rent, if any?
It’s always smart to know what exactly you’re paying when you pay rent. If you’re lucky, that may include some of your utilities like electricity or Internet. Also, beware there may be a Common Area Maintenance fee (also known as a CAM fee) that’s included in rent that takes care of shoveling snow, trash & recycling.

2. Will the landlord agree to any updates?
If you love an apartment but are holding back because of something like bathroom cabinets or the color of the kitchen, see if the landlord is willing to make those adjustments for you. While they might say no, it’ can’t hurt to ask! At the end of the day, they want the apartments rented and if you’re a qualified candidate there’s a chance they’ll accommodate those tweaks to keep your application.

3. How is rent paid?
Some landlords will prefer checks while others will have an online portal system where you can set up autopay. Make sure to ask so you can be prepared with checks or plan accordingly with your accounts. Also, ask if there’s a grace period for late payments.

4. How are repairs/maintenance request handled?
Similarly to rent, the maintenance requests will differ depending on each landlord. Some may provide a direct number or email while others will have an online system in place.

5. What is the policy on subletting?
While having to sublet in the middle of your lease is a pain, sometimes the unexpected throws a wrench in our plans and it happens. Make sure you’re aware of the policy should you have to sublease. If subletting is part of your original plan, then this is definitely something to ask.

6. Is renter’s insurance required?
Renter’s insurance, among other sneaky costs, will pop up throughout this process so make sure you are familiar with your landlord’s policy on renter’s insurance. (PS – whether or not it’s required, we highly recommend it!)

7. What’s the parking situation?
Even if parking isn’t your main mode of transportation, it’s proactive to ask about the parking situation if you plan to have guests who drive. Make sure to ask about the required permits or where there is free parking.