Office of Residence Life

Moving into your new place

Here are some important tips to keep in mind when moving into your new apartment.

Keep written receipts

Make sure to get written receipts from the landlord or his/her agent whenever you give them money. Receipts should be signed and include your name, date, amount, and a notation as to what the payment is for, such as "Rent for September 2006," or "Security Deposit Paid in Full."

Get an inspection checklist

Use an inspection checklist (see attached) to document the condition of the apartment on the day you move in. If you can, take photos of each room or of anything unusual, as these may be helpful later on in case of any future disputes with your landlord regarding the initial condition of the property.

Write down emergency numbers

Ask the landlord for a list of emergency phone numbers, such as where you can reach him or her at home, as well as phone numbers for local police and fire departments. Similary, provide the landlord with information about who to contact in case you are involved in an emergency situation.

Also ask your landlord where to find the emergency shut-offs for water, gas or electric in case of fire, flood, etc.

Collect basic information

You might not give such things a second thought, but it's important to get information from the landlord about such things as recycling information, where the garbage cans are kept, when to put your garbage out for collection, whether or not there are any parking restrictions in the area, and so on. Troy's recycling instructions are included in the City of Troy Directory of Community Services.

Arrange for service/utility hookups

It is your responsibility to contact the vendors for services such as electricity, gas, telephone, cable, internet, water (if you must pay for your own water). Plan ahead, as it may take several days to establish service. If the services and/or utilities are already on or available when you move in, you should still contact the respective companies in order to have the bills put in your name.

Get permission before decorating your new apartment

Landlords typically are not happy when tenants put lots of holes in the walls to hang pictures, since this can create extreme damage to some walls, particularly older plaster walls. Before you hang anything in your apartment, ask your landlord what kinds of hardware is best to use, and if you want to paint or wallpaper the walls, you should ask the landlord for permission in advance. They will probably want to know the choice of color. Be aware that painting and/or papering might be considered an improvement to the property, so it is possible that the cost of your supplies may be deducted from your rent, with the landlord's permission.

Respect others' property

When moving your belongings into your new place, be respectful of your neighbors and of their property. Don't move in late at night, and don't drive a moving van on any lawns surrounding your apartment, as it will cause large ruts and/or tear up the grass. Similarly, remember that you are responsible for any damages caused when moving in, so, for example, don't drag large pieces of furniture along the hallway walls or on wooden floors.

Last modified: Apr 29, 2013