5 Mistakes Tenants Make When Renting

The rental process should be a straightforward one, but the unfortunate reality is that it’s a multilayered process requiring a lot of due diligence on the parts of both the landlord and the tenant. The former wants to find the best possible candidate to move in so they can enjoy peace of mind, while the latter wants a place that best fits their lifestyle and budget concerns. Tenants believe the rental process is relatively straightforward, which means they sometimes make some problematic mistakes that can cause long-term problems. Here are 5 of the most common mistakes.


Some tenants have a tendency to think that the schedule revolves around them, and that they hold all the cards during the rental process. They view themselves as a customer with an “always right” attitude. Unfortunately, renting is not a business transaction – it’s a relationship with real give and take involved. Landlords have a vested interest in putting trust into their tenants, and that needs to be met halfway.


The same rule applies for tenants when it comes to questions. The less that are asked, the more problems could potentially pop up down the road. It’s always wise for tenants to ask about tenant insurance, who takes care of maintenance, who shovels the driveway or mows the lawn, etc. Many tenants make the mistake of walking into a showing and making a decision based on the space itself. It won’t turn out well if they sign on the dotted line without knowing what they’re getting in return.


Condo rentals are becoming quite popular due to their wide availability and convenience. However, many tenants fail to check the condo rules and by-laws that differ per region and building. For instance, some don’t allow pets, while others simply put restrictions on big dogs while allowing smaller dogs and cats. Other things tenants sometimes fail to check are smoking laws, BBQing on the balcony, parking availability, etc. Even townhouses are not immune to such by-laws, and they may also include rules about things such as lawn maintenance. It’s always best to find out if there are any by-laws they should be aware of before signing any agreements.


While it’s hard to think of anyone who rents a space they can’t afford, it’s more common than one might think. Oftentimes tenants will misjudge their monthly balance sheet and think they can afford a more expensive property. They fail to take into account things like a possible job loss or an unexpected expense. Rule of thumb is to earn 2.5 times more than your monthly rent at the very least. The last thing a landlord wants to see is a late rental payment(s), as this can severely damage trust in the relationship and possibly lead to an eviction.


Another common mistake for tenants is to jump the gun and pull the trigger on the first good property they see. Trouble is, a great property could be right around the corner. It’s never a good idea to deal with renting on a case-by-case basis. Comparison is the key. Schedule out several showings, even throughout the course of a few weeks. Yes, a nice property might be lost to another renter, but oftentimes an even better property will enter the market. Landlords are constantly adding their properties to the list, and they may be offering a bigger, prettier spot for less money. It happens all the time.

For more information on how both tenants and landlords can avoid many common pitfalls and enjoy a great relationship together, contact Royal York Property Management today! We’re here to take the guesswork out of the process.

Source: Royalyorkpropertymanagement.ca