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Top Five Things To Never Say To A Landlord

Carlee Sutera
Carlee Sutera Student, Rutgers Law School
Carlee is a 2L at Rutgers Law School
forced to get lawyer
If you’re a renter, you know how hard it can be to find the perfect apartment. Once you do, meeting the landlord and touring the place is stressful because you don’t want to say the wrong thing and ruin your chances.

Here are the top five things you shouldn’t say to your prospective landlord:

“I’m moving because I hate my landlord”

Odds are a prospective landlord will ask you why you’re moving, and you should be careful.

While you want to be honest, saying bad things about your current landlord, property, leasing office etc. can come off the wrong way.

Because your prospective landlord will have no way of verifying your claims, even if they are totally legitimate, you may come off as a difficult or high maintenance tenant which is something they won’t like.

It is best to answer in the most neutral way possible as to not raise any red flags. Something like, “I want to live closer to my family” or “I need a bigger place” are simple and unobjectionable.

“This space will be perfect for parties”

While everyone has company over or parties from time to time, it is best that you don’t mention this on your apartment tour.

Mentioning parties or large gatherings may make your prospective landlord nervous that you won’t take good care of their apartment or that you’ll bother other tenants.

Even though there is nothing wrong with having a good time, if you don’t want your prospective landlord to worry that you’re irresponsible or inconsiderate, save the party talk for another time.

“I can’t wait to get (insert type of pet here)”

Some apartments have strict pet policies that you won’t necessarily be aware of when you’re touring the place. Your prospective landlord could even have an aversion to a particular kind of pet.

It is best to be as neutral as possible in all respects when meeting a landlord for the first time. It is obviously ok to clarify the pet policy and mention that you are considering getting a pet, but always play it safe.

“I’m not planning on staying here for long”

As finding a new tenant requires time and money, landlords are typically looking for someone a little more permanent.
It would be best to wait until you’ve fully committed to an apartment to let your landlord know you won’t be there long term.

“This place is so close to my significant other’s apartment!”

While there’s nothing wrong with being in a relationship, mentioning that your significant other lives or works close might make a prospective landlord worry they will start living there with you.

Having someone live in an apartment that isn’t on the lease can cause a liability issue for the landlord and if they think you could potentially put them in that situation they might be less inclined to rent to you.

It is best to leave mentioning how close your significant other lives out of your apartment tour.


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