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Here are some guidelines for renting an apartment in Miami.

1. When renting in Miami the Real Estate Commission is fully paid by the Landlord. We are here to help you at no charge!

2. Choose the area and the characteristics of you rental property (ask for our expertise on the matter). Better indicate if you need a furnished or unfurnished unit, long or short term rental and if you have a pet.

3. We suggest you start your search 4-5 weeks before your move-in date due to the several phases of the process. Also, any offer made to a landlord before this frame of time, mostly won’t be accepted because of the extended time his/her property will stay vacant. Offers made close to your move-in date are definitely more appealing to a landlord.

4. After we visit physically or virtually (!) the properties you might decide to write an offer (called Contract to Lease). This is also the moment to list, if any, damages you want to be fixed before your move-in. To speed the rental process, we recommend to have the following documentation ready:

. A valid ID with picture

. 3 Bank Statements

. 3 Pay Stubs (or a proposed salary for a job)

. Recent Credit Report (with credit score is plus!)

. Social Security Number (if you don’t have one, other documentation might be asked depending on the case)

. Your last Landlord contact

These documents will be requested by the condo association or directly by the landlord if you’re renting a house.

5. Pet friendly buildings are not so common in Miami and rules for type and size of the pet apply. We encourage you to disclose immediately about your pet to make the search worthy your time. Fees or deposits for pets vary. If you have a service or emotional support animal, fees are waived and acceptance by the building is required. Have your pet’s paperwork ready!

6. In Miami the most common move-in cost is 3 months’ rent: first, last and security deposit. The building’s association might ask for a security deposit for the common areas that will be returned in full if no damage occurred. Most of the time can be negotiated with the landlord.

7. If your offer gets accepted, next step will be to sign a formal lease and prepare for the application. Application fees vary from $50 to $150 per person applying. Remember to always disclose all future occupant of the rental unit. Their information is needed too. The approval time can take from 1 week to 3 weeks.

8. Move-in fees (mostly returnable) from $200 to $500 may apply in buildings to reserve the cargo elevator and/or loading dock.

9. Things to look for in a walk through are:

. How clean is the unit

. Fully working appliances

. Unreported damages

We also advise to take detailed pictures of the full property focusing on the damages that couldn’t be fixed prior to your move-in (ex. Scratches or chips on furniture, on floors etc.).

10. On move out time you’ll need to leave the property as you found it, but normal ‘wear and tear’ is allowed (this is when the pictures on your move-in come handy).

11. According to Florida Law, the Landlord has a total of 15 days to return your deposit if no damages to the property were found. If the landlord decides to claim for damages, a written notice must be provided to the tenant by certified mail along with the landlord’s reason for writing the claim. If the tenant does not dispute the claim within the 15 day period of receiving the notice, the landlord must return the balance of the security deposit within 30 days after the notice was received.

12. If you gave a deposit on the move-in to the building  association, we suggest to formally request to return of your deposit.

13. If you need to brake the lease, the fine is typically a 2-months penalty.

Now that we covered all your doubts, click HERE to find your place to call home.