How to Rent a House

This is how you rent a house from University Places.

Read everything on this page if you want to rent a house in Ann Arbor for school next year.  It applies to most management companies even if they don’t tell you.

1.Visiting The House You Want to Rent – What’s Available

The first thing most people want to do is see the house they might want to rent.  There is a law in Ann Arbor that says landlords cannot show or lease houses until 70 days after the start of a lease that is longer than 9 months.  If we have any houses not limited to this showing period they are listed here. Click on that link to see more info about that house.

How do I visit these houses that are in the 70 Day Wait Period?

First – get on the wait list so we know you are interested.

In Ann Arbor U of M students are no more than 2 friends away from knowing someone on campus.  And you can introduce yourself to anyone you meet.  So many students go up to the house they are interested in, knock on the door and ask to see the house they might want to rent. Bring cookies or beer as a good will gesture.

This way you can find out about the house and ask the current residents what the landlord or management company is like before you call for an official appointment.

This is just the tradition around here and University Places is only telling you about that tradition.  We are not saying you should or should not do this.

We usually have mass showings in early November where several groups go through the houses during one time period.  Often one or more groups is very interested in renting the house they just saw and will let us know right then and there.  If you wait you may lose out. This is not false scarcity, as it happens all the time and some people get quite irritated.  If you want a house, please tell us right away.

We will tell you the policies during this time.  If you feel like you aren’t 100% capable of meeting the policies but really want the house and are committed you should say so. We are flexible to some degree.

You’ve Seen Your House and Now You Want to Rent It.  Now What?

2. Signing and Paperwork

Call or email us and tell us you want to sign a lease.  Make an appointment to sign the lease. Ideally we’d like everyone that plans to live in the house to sign at one time, but we know you are busy.  Make other arrangements for those that can’t be there.

If you are past the 70 wait period or the wait period does not apply then you will fill out an application form for each person that wants to sign the lease.  We have the form online so please fill this out before you sign the lease.

Read the lease and be prepared to sign the lease as a group.  Not everyone has to sign at the exact same time.  You can get all the signatures within a few days.

Bring the first month’s rent with you when you sign the lease, preferably in one check.

Notify your parents because they will have to sign the parent guarantor form for each person on the lease.  The parent form is online also.  If your parents have any questions have them contact us. We’ll be happy to answer all questions they have.

Putting a Deposit on a House in the 70 Day Waiting Period

University Places will take a Fully Refundable Deposit on a house and move you to the top of the waiting list.  If you change your mind because your group split up, got bigger or smaller or you found a house you like better you won’t lose your money. There is always someone else waiting to get that house.

After November 1st you have 24 hours to set a date to sign your lease.  If you do not set up the lease signing appointment your security deposit will be returned and the house will be offered to the public or the group with the next deposit.

What About The Wait List?

The wait list is a way for us to manage the people interested in particular houses.  To get a priority spot on the wait list please place a refundable deposit.  We will email the entire list when we know something new or if a house becomes available.

The wait list is available from about September 1 through November 1st of any year. After November 1st any remaining houses are available to rent and don’t need a waitlist spot, just call or email.

If you don’t hear back from us feel free to contact us again. It may be that a particular house was reserved with a deposit from a motivated group and is off the market.

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