While apartment inspections typically take place the day you move in and the day you move out, they don’t have to! Typically used as a tool by landlords and property managers, inspections can also be used by you! It’s important to perform a personal apartment inspection of every place you tour to determine if it’s right for you. It’s easy to get caught up in first impressions and fancy amenities and forget about the important things. You should also request to see the actual unit you will be renting before signing the lease – it may not be in the same condition as the model unit. It’s not necessary to take a couple of hours to check everything, but you should spend some time looking for any major flaws. Some things will be obvious, like the condition of the floors or doors that don’t close properly, but other things will be less noticeable. On your next tour make sure to check for the following:
Your Apartment Inspection Checklist
- Any sign of pests—rodents, roaches, ants, etc.
- Check for safe and functional electrical outlets.
- Check for a safe and functional circuit breaker box—you’ll want to know where this is located, especially when your blow-dryer trips the breaker and goes out mid-blowout.
- Check for functioning smoke detectors.
- Check for a fire extinguisher
- Turn all light fixtures on and off, as well as ceiling fans. Check that they’re properly installed and not hanging by a thread
- Test the thermostat. You don’t want to move in without AC during the summer or heat during the winter—make sure the room feels the same temperature that the thermostat is set to.
- Check that the stove an oven both turn on properly.`
- Open the refrigerator, freezer, and a kitchen cabinet or two to make sure everything opens and closes without fault.
- Check for leaky faucets (or pipes under the sink). There’s nothing worse than storing your clean towels under the bathroom sink after move-in, just to find them covered in residue from leaky pipes the next day.
- Flush the toilet to make sure it actually flushes and isn’t wasting water by continuously running.
- Run some water in the shower/tub to see: if the shower head leaks, what the water pressure is like, if the tub is stopped up, and if the tub properly holds water when the stopper is on.
- See that all locks are up to code—both interior and exterior.