Within a few months of your lease ending, your landlord or property manager may ask if you would like to renew your lease. If you’re happy with your apartment and want to stay, here’s what you need to do:

Review your lease

First and foremost, you need to know when your lease is up. Take a look at your copy of the apartment lease and note the termination date. Mark this date on your calendar.

Find out when you need to notify your apartment manager of your decision to renew your lease or move out. Do you need to notify them 30 or 60 days in advance? Mark that date on your calendar. If you miss that date, the lease could auto-renew forcing you to keep paying for the apartment.

Talk to the landlord

Before the deadline to renew or terminate your lease, talk to your landlord or apartment community manager about your options. If the rental rate is changing, you should be informed. Don’t be afraid to negotiate on the rent.

If you like your apartment community, but find you need more or less space, inquire whether you can move to a different unit within the community. Make sure that all agreements are put in writing; these terms should be reflected in the new lease.

Make your decision

Once you have all this information gathered, you can make an informed decision about how you want to proceed. Decide whether or not you want to renew your apartment lease.

Write a letter

Once your rental decision is made, submit a letter to your apartment management team informing them of your decision to renew or terminate your lease. If you have made any special arrangements with your apartment manager for a deal on a rental rate or a move to a new unit in the community, include this information and any supporting documents. Keep a copy of these documents for yourself.

Read your new lease carefully

If you have decided to renew your lease, you most likely will be asked to sign a new lease. This lease will reflect any change in terms and designate the period of the new agreement (one or two years, or month to month, for instance.) Read the new lease carefully and make sure that you are comfortable with the language.

Sign the new lease

Once you have thoroughly read the new apartment lease and are comfortable with the terms, sign the document to make things official. An official apartment community representative will sign it, as well.

Related:

Tips for negotiating lower rent

Why apartment prices fluctuate

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