For anyone new to a city, finding your dream apartment is the number one goal. With virtual apartment tours now being the norm, it can be a little difficult to visualize yourself living in a space you've only seen on a screen. When you think of it, it's a lot like online dating!

What's more, virtual apartment tours do not allow you to explore the sweet spots around the new place - closets, cabinet finish, the view from the windows, and so much more. However, knowing the right things to ask during the tour can help you make the most of this accessible and convenient apartment tour.

Here is our list of the eight essential questions you must ask during a virtual apartment tour. We'll also give you some great ideas and tips for your research before you seal the deal.

What questions should you ask in a virtual apartment tour?

1. How do I pay my rent?

Most property managers and landlords accept electronic transfers as a hassle-free method to pay rent. Nevertheless, it's not uncommon for landlords to request you to write a physical check and mail it directly to them or put it in a deposit box.

If you hear the words "cash-only" during your virtual apartment tour, definitely take it as a red flag and rent elsewhere!

2. What are the safety and security measures in the building?

It may have been A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood for Tom Hanks, but without proper research, you may not be as fortunate. So don't hesitate to ask about the safety of the area during your virtual apartment tour! Security features like gates, buzzer systems, and patrols can make a tremendous difference in the security of your apartment.

3. What is the parking situation?

No one wants to park two buildings away or have to walk a mile to their apartment after a long day. With an assigned parking spot, you can easily avoid unnecessary trouble and maybe even a fight with a neighbor for your vehicle! In the same way, ask about an open lot, garages, or the extra costs of covered parking during your apartment tour.

4. What apartment amenities are included in my lease?

Many apartments include utilities in the rent price and pay companies directly for these services. However, it is crucial to establish which apartment amenities are not included so you know how much to budget for those costs without burning a hole in your pocket. You don't want your electricity or water to get shut off because you thought they were included!

If utilities are not included, ask how much they typically cost in the area during your virtual apartment tour. Get to know the providers that people in the neighborhood use for cable and internet as well!

5. How are emergency repairs handled?

Life can throw you some unexpected curveballs. Inquire about any 24/7 emergency number you can call for maintenance services and how quick the response would be. Also, be sure to ask how to submit maintenance requests if something breaks in your apartment.

6. Can I make changes to the apartment?

When the artist in you demands a change of aesthetic, it may take more effort than just moving things around. Want to repaint the walls or put up bookshelves you found at Home Depot? Make sure to ask what cosmetic changes are allowed during your virtual apartment walkthrough.

7. What is your guest policy?

Though usually outlined in the lease agreement, feel free to ask about the building policy for having guests over at your place. It can include specific timeframes and the number of visits allowed per guest.

And don't forget the special guests - pets! If your furry guest is a permanent family member, ask about their pet policies, costs, requirements of shot records or other documents, size and type of pets allowed, etc.

8. Any plans to update the building?

In most cases, renovations don't exactly look like the Work From Home music video. With construction crews around, you could be dealing with days, weeks, or even several months of noise and inconvenience. But in the case of unit renovations, this could mean getting a chance to live in a place with brand new things! So don't forget to ask for a heads-up during the virtual tenant walkthrough.

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