Frequently Asked Questions For Tenants
What is considered an emergency?
FIRE ,FLOOD or BLOOD – An emergency is an immediate situation that can cause harm or danger to you or cause harm or damage to the property. Obviously, if the situation is a medical, police or fire emergency, call 911 first. If a situation of this nature occurred after hours you can call our office at (830) 643-0656, we always have someone on call. Someone will respond within 30 minutes. The lease states that AC not working, is NOT necessarily considered an emergency situation. If it is after 8:00 p.m. and before 7:00 a.m. and the call is not a true emergency, you could be charged for the call.
Can I be charged for maintenance?
Yes, you will be charged for a repair if the maintenance problem was caused by tenant damage or neglect. We use qualified maintenance repair personnel, and they can assess and determine cause. Also, you can be billed for a service call if you miss an appointment with one of our maintenance contractors. This is addressed in the lease.
How do I report a maintenance item?
For normal or non-urgent maintenance items, you may call us if you have a maintenance problem, but all maintenance requests must be in writing before we can authorize a repair. This can be submitted by a note to our office, mail, fax or email. Briefly describe the problem, and be sure to identify the property address, your name and a phone number where you can be reached during business hours. We will determine the nature of the repair and have an appropriate maintenance vendor contact you to set up a time for repair. If the item is urgent and it is during regular business hours (Monday – Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.), then you may call our office at (830)643-0656. We will still ask that you submit the request in writing. To report emergency maintenance needs be sure the receptionist is informed that you have a maintenance emergency. If it is after business hours, call the office, and then follow the voice mail instructions to leave an emergency message, or you can call (830-643-0656. For medical, police or fire emergencies, dial 911 before calling us.
Can I change the locks or re-key the property?
No. Texas Property Code requires specific locking devices and that all properties to be re-keyed for a new tenant move-in. We comply with those code requirements. If for some reason, you feel you must change locks or re-key, then you must first have the Landlord’s written permission, and you must provide the Landlord with a new key, and of course it would be at your expense. The Landlord can not be denied access to his property.
Should I report any damages prior to move-in?
When you signed your lease with us, you also received an Inventory and Condition form. This is for you to note any condition about the property.This form is not a repair request, but rather a record of the beginning condition of the property. You have 5 to 7 days from the day you move-in to complete the form. Be sure to sign it, make a copy for your records, and return the form to our office. Most likely we already have pictures of the property condition and are aware of the condition, but you can feel free to take pictures yourself and include a copy with the form.
The form and information will be kept with your lease, and will be helpful when you move-out. You must fill the inventory form out and return it. IF this is not returned and damages or wear and tear marks are not notated down when you move in, you can be charged for them when you move out.
Can I put nails in the wall to hang pictures?
Generally, yes. The lease states that you may make a “reasonable” number of nail holes to hang pictures. We want you to feel comfortable and for the property to feel like home. However, bolts and fasteners to hang heavy objects that leave large nails, bolts or holes in the walls are not acceptable. Upon move-out the tenant is responsible to remove all nails and fasteners that they installed, and must repair any holes or damages. A little putty and touch-up is all that is needed for small holes.
Can I install cable or satellite TV?
Generally, yes. However, you must first obtain written permission from NB Leasing, and it must be performed by a qualified professional installer. At some properties you may be prohibited from installing a satellite dish in any location where the dish is visible from the ground or from any other property in the area, and anything attached to the property must be installed so that it does not cause any type of damage to the property. For example securing a satellite dish to the top of the roof through the exterior roof shingles, could eventually be cause for a roof leak. The dish should be secured to another wood surface under the roof line.
Any cost of installation is an expense of the resident. Also, any fixture attached to the property becomes part of the property at the time of move-out, unless the tenant has otherwise been instructed by the Landlord to remove it at move-out.
Can I install extra telephone lines?
Generally, yes. However, you must also obtain written permission from NB Leasing to do this. And again the work must be done in a quality, professional workmanship manner. All costs of installing extra phone lines are the responsibility of the resident.
Can I get a pet after move-in?
Not usually. Pets are not authorized on any lease, unless you have a separate pet addendum to the lease giving authorization. And then it is only for a specified pet(s). You must contact your Property Manager first if you decide to have any type of pet or any additional pet after you sign the lease and have moved-in. There is a strict penalty for an unauthorized pet. The Property Manager can tell you if the property owner will allow the pet and how much additional deposit would be required for it. If an unauthorized pet is found or determined during a scheduled property walk through, you will be charged the unauthorized pet fee of $100 plus $25 a day until the appropriate forms and deposit is made and pet is approved.
Do I get my pet deposit back?
Even if your pet dies or you get rid of it before I move-out, it’s not immediate. The pet deposit stays in a trust account along with the security deposit, and is refundable only at the end of the lease after move-out.
What are my rights to privacy?
Texas Property Code and your signed lease make allowances for the Landlord or anyone authorized by the Landlord to enter the property. However, it is our policy to do all we can to contact you and give you at least 24 hours notice before entering the property. All regular maintenance appointments are scheduled with you in advance, so a maintenance contractor must have your prior consent to make a regular maintenance call. However, there are certain instances allowed by law where a Landlord can peacefully enter the property without notice during reasonable hours to: (1) survey or review the property condition, (2) make emergency repairs, (3) exercise a contractual or statuary lien, (4) leave written notices inside the property, and (5) seize non-exempt property if tenant is in default.
What if I am transferred during my lease?
Most leases are for a specified period of time. If you are transferred and must move before that time has expired, then ask your company what assistance they will provide if you must “break a lease” early. Let your property manager know what is happening as soon as possible so we can begin marketing the property for a replacement tenant. A business transfer is still considered an early termination and your signed lease specifies the procedures and penalties of such an event.
Can I sub-lease the property?
No. The lease agreement clearly states that the resident shall not sublet any portion of the property or assign the agreement without written consent from us.
When and how should I give my notice to vacate?
Your lease agreement specifies the procedures for giving notice to vacate. In all cases, verbal notice is not acceptable, so the notice must be in writing. In most leases, notice to vacate must be received in our office in writing on or before the 1st of the month. Most leases require a minimum 30-day notice and run for a full monthly period. In your notice, also be sure to include a forwarding mailing address.
When I give my notice, are there any cleaning instructions for move-out?
Yes. We have a set of cleaning and move-out instructions, which we normally send to you upon receipt of your notice to vacate. If you did not receive them or need another copy, you may call our office.
Can I clean the carpets myself when I move out?
No. Your rental agreement provides that all carpets must be professionally cleaned using a steam process, with a copy of the invoice from the professional company, submitted to your property manager at move-out.
Can I apply my security deposit to pay the last month’s rent?
No. The security deposit was held in a trust account during the term of your lease. The purpose is to cover tenant damage or delinquencies. You owe rent as usual through the last 30 days before move-out. We will inspect the property after you move-out, and assess for damages. All or part of the security deposit as specified in the lease can be deducted to cover damages. The balance of the deposit will be mailed to you within 30 days after move-out. In your 30-day written notice to vacate, it is therefore important to include a forwarding address.
What happens if my roommate moves out before the end of the lease?
If your roommate moves out, a written notice needs to be submitted to us. Remember that tenants are all still jointly and singularly liable to ensure that the rent is paid. If there is a new roommate involved, then you must have written permission from us to substitute a roommate. That substitute roommate must fill out an application just as if they were a new tenant. If approved, then all parties must sign an amendment to the lease indicating the change in tenants. Remember: your lease agreement is a business contract and we want to ensure that the business aspect is maintained. It is not our responsibility to arbitrate or mediate problems with multiple tenant situations.
What happens to the disposition of a roommate’s security deposit after move-out?
Security deposits are collected as “security” for the property. Reimbursements to departing roommates are handled by the remaining tenants. No portion of the security deposit will be refunded individually.
Why did I receive a 3-day notice when the rent was only 6 days late?
The rent is due on the first of the month. You have a grace period to pay the rent as specified in the lease. If the rent is not posted in our office by the deadline, then you are subject to getting the late notice.
I am an excellent tenant and take good care of the home. Can you waive my late charges?
No. The lease clearly states that rent is due by the 1st of each month and specifies the penalty if it is late. We want to be fair to all tenants and treat everyone equally, so we can not judge if one resident is more deserving than another of paying late charges. Therefore, we enforce late charges.
I was late paying rent last month. Why am I still getting more late charges stacked on top?
Your lease specifies that any payment made by a tenant is applied first to any non-rent obligations such as late payments, repairs or NSF charges. So when you pay only the amount of your monthly rent and you have some of these other obligations on your account, then that payment was applied to those obligations first. Only part of your payment went to pay rent. So rent is still considered late, until all of your obligations are paid in full, and you are subject to another late fee.