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We sign our leases online (in-person signing may be available upon request. We do not sign leases by fax or mail). Once approved you will be sent an email with a link to set up your online resident portal. After establishing your login and password, you will have the opportunity to review and sign your lease online from your computer, tablet or smartphone.
How Long Do I Have to Sign My Lease?
We will keep your lease offer open for 48 hours by default. After that we encourage you to contact us in writing if you need more time to review and sign your lease. Our properties are in demand and we typically have one or more additional applications pending on any given home or property.
How Much Do I Need To Pay Once I Have Signed My Lease?
You must pay your first full month of rent, your full security deposit, and any applicable pet deposit. If you are moving in mid-month you will receive a prorated discount on your 2nd month’s rent.
You may have a zero balance on your account after paying your security deposit. This is because your rent charge will post a couple of days before your lease start date. We still require the advance payment of your first full month’s rent. Just select the Make a Payment or Pay Now option and enter the amount manually.
Just like signing your lease, we accept online payments. You can pay online through your resident portal. We do not accept cash for any purpose. Other than online payments, we only accept certified funds and wires for your initial deposit and rent. Money orders and checks may be accepted for future payments but a fee applies. See your lease for more information about the paper payment processing charge. Credit card payments are also not accepted as your initial payment.
If you are moving in within 5 days of signing your lease, you may be required to pay by wire or certified funds or your move-in may be delayed until funds clear our bank.
This charge applies when your lease calls for you to reimburse the Landlord for one or more utilities. This fee is charged per reimbursable utility.
Residents in our single family homes generally are only responsible for reimbursing water/sewer charges to the landlord and will pay the utility company directly for gas and/or electric services.
Residents in our apartment buildings may be required to reimburse the landlord for water/sewer plus shared utilities. This varies widely by property, so please see your lease for more information about which utilities you must reimburse. Common reimbursable utilities include: Public Service Gas, Public Service Electricity, Heating Oil.
In some of our apartment buildings residents must reimburse the landlord for certain common area maintenance charges. These may include trash removal, snow removal, and hallway cleaning. This varies by landlord and property, so please contact us if you are unsure which charges pertain to your lease.
Our leases generally have an automatic renewal provision. This provision applies when you do not accept our renewal offer(s) or take no action to renew/non-renew your lease. These provisions may be 12 month or month-to-month (MTM). These provisions generally include an automatic increase with the automatic renewal. All you need to do to avoid the sometimes higher increase with a MTM automatic renewal is accept one of the renewal options we will provide you or negotiate a new lease term with us. If you take no action, the automatic renewal provision will apply along with the rent increase.
Important Note: If your lease is not renewed by the landlord, the automatic renewal provision does not apply, but if you do not move out by the lease expiration you may be subject to holding over rent which is generally higher than your current rent and you will be in violation of your lease and subject to eviction. Please contact us if your landlord has sent you notice of non-renewal and you need extra time so that we can work with you as best we can to accommodate your request.
Generally you will be offered a renewal lease and any rent increase will be noted in your renewal lease offer. These increases vary and are based on market conditions and other factors. See above for automatic renewal provisions and some rent increases that apply to those conditions.
Some of our leases contain provisions for automatic renewal for 12 months and a rent increase upon renewal. These provisions are intended for when neither party takes action to renew or not-renew the lease. The automatic renewal increase may apply, but you are encouraged to contact us if you have not been offered a renewal lease, or if the amount is not affordable. Not all increases are negotiable, but we will do our best to accommodate you and come to a mutually agreeable increase amount where we can.
All of our leases require either a 60 or 90 day notice requirement. This varies from property to property, but it is never less than 60 days. This notice requirement is relative to the 1st of the month so if you exceed the grace period for notice in a given month, you may be required to pay rent for the remainder of the current month plus 60 or 90 days depending on your lease. The 60 or 90 day requirement also applies to month to month (MTM) leases.
It may not be in anyone’s best interest to hold you to a new 12 month lease if you miss your non-renewal deadline by a short amount of time. We will do our best to work with you in these cases. You will generally be required to pay rent until your renewal lease expires or a new tenant is found for the premises. For this reason it is important to communicate early and clearly if you do not intend to renew your lease so that we can assist you in avoiding additional rent and other charges that may apply. See your lease for more information.
Your lease contains a provision requiring that you obtain and provide proof of renter's insurance coverage covering the Landlord for not less than $100,000.00 in liability coverage. Coverage meeting this minimum requirement is provided for you by default at a total cost described in your lease. This amount will be charged to your account monthly.
This base coverage does not cover any of your belongings or other damages you might encounter.
You are not required to retain this coverage if you provide proof of your own coverage.
At any time you may provide proof of coverage through another licensed insurer and we will exclude you from further coverage and charges for the default coverage until your proven coverage expires. At that time you will need to send us proof of your renewed coverage. If we do not receive proof of coverage renewal from you, default coverage and charges will be reinstated.
If you wish to retain the minimum coverage provided by our 3rd party insurer required in your lease and not obtain your own coverage, you do not need to take any further action.
However, if you desire coverage that also covers your own belongings, please see your property/casualty insurance provider for coverage. If you own a vehicle, the insurer covering your vehicle will normally provide renter's insurance in combination with your auto insurance at a discount.
This is generally no earlier than your lease start date. Often we are working hard to ensure that you can move into a repaired, cleaned, and ready home, and that process can take right up to the date your lease starts. However, sometimes we have homes ready much earlier. Please contact us to arrange for earlier move-in. We will let you know if it is possible. Please note that this process includes a lease addendum and prorated rent payment for the new lease start date where possible.
We normally do what we call a Lockbox Move-In. Most of our residents wish to move in on weekends or evenings, and sometimes holidays, where we are not readily available. Not only that, but we know that moving is already pretty stressful and things don't always go to plan. Your 9am arrival can quickly turn into 12pm or the next day depending on traffic, moving truck issues and more.
Because of that, we will post a key lockbox on the property for you that you can access at any time after 6am on the day of your scheduled move.
Because of insurance liability and the fact that your lease and tenancy do not start until a specific date, we cannot provide the keys before that date. Add our primary contact email firstname.lastname@example.org to your contacts to prevent this and other important notices going to your spam folder.
Generally no, unless you set them up ahead of time per your lease. You must establish utilities for your apartment/home/unit before you move-in. If the utilities are on when you arrive and you did not set up your account yet, you can expect them to be turned off at any moment. We do not control the scheduling of turnover shut-offs at the utility. Plan to contact your utility right away to establish your account(s) and set up service. View your lease to ensure you know which utilities are provided and which are not.
We encourage you to take advantage of BGE's budget billing service for predictable monthly billing, and BGE's Peak Rewards Program if your unit is equipped with central air conditioning. You are permitted to have BGE install their hardware to enjoy this program. You must assist their technician in gaining access to your rental unit thermostat, or the outside portion of the AC system for installation.
See the Utilities Section for more help with utility questions
After 8am and before 9pm is generally when you can move-in if you are in one of our apartment buildings. This is because of the noise that moving in will create. The other residents may be understanding of an earlier or later move, but as your neighbor they are not required to be. Please be a good neighbor and respect quiet hours.
In our single family homes you are not limited to when you can move in, but please also be respectful of your neighbors. Rowhomes especially are not sound-proof and heavy items being dropped or loud footsteps may carry over to adjacent homes.
You may have inquired about getting an alarm system or you may already have one installed. No matter what, we wanted to take a moment to share our alarm policy to help you stay in compliance with your lease.
You are permitted to install an alarm system if you adhere to all of the following requirements:
The alarm is professionally installed or you do not damage the property in any way during installation or removal.
You properly register any alarm that connects to emergency services with the appropriate local agency (note this is not automatic although some alarm companies will do this for you. Check with your servicer.)
You provide us with our own access code and basic instructions for disarming and re-arming the alarm. No exceptions. Our Landlords require unfettered access to the property at all times for emergencies and regular maintenance (notice will be provided)
You notify us in writing in advance of installing an alarm system.
You post a clear warning (alarm sticker etc) on the exterior of the property (and your apartment if you live in one of our apartment residences) that an alarm is present.
You do NOT install an alarm on the main door(s) of your apartment building if applicable.
As the owner of the alarm system, you are responsible for any false alarm charges, or other applicable fees related to the alarm system, especially those arising from an unregistered alarm, or false alarms caused by failure to provide us with an access code.
Other than that, be safe!
Plunger. If a drain blockage occurs you may be charged for plumbing services if a the drain blockage is removed by plunging the drain
9v and AA batteries. You’ll need these to change batteries in smoke and CO detectors on a regular basis.
Basic cleaning supplies. You’ll need these for your basic home hygiene to prevent pests and damage.
Throw rugs and chair/furniture guards to protect hardwood floors from damage and reduce noise
3x shower curtains, or specialty shower curtains made for clawfoot tubs if your unit has one (curtains should overlap to prevent water going behind the curtains during showers). This is the most common cause of reported leaks in homes with clawfoot tubs and the repairs can be expensive for you!
As a Baltimore-based business, we understand the needs of local property investors who don’t want to compromise on expert service and thoughtful management. We’re headed by investors, for investors, and apply our years of experience and inside knowledge to create a property management company tailored to you. Contact us today to get started.