The Renters Guide is intended to give you information and help you plan for your off campus living needs. Please refer to the following sections for specific information about living off campus:
Planning to live off campus
- Define your basic needs and preferences. Do you want to rent your own place? Live with a family? Share an apartment with a friend?
- How much rent can you afford?
Be sure to include the following when figuring out your rental budget:
- Housing: rent, renters insurance, furniture, utilities
- Food: cooking your own meals at home, eating out
- Transportation: car loan, bus fares, gas, insurance
- Personal needs: toiletries, clothing, laundry
- Entertainment: movies, events, magazine subscriptions
- Travel: visiting family and friends
- Do you have specific needs for housing features? Pets? Handicap access? Walking distance?
- Prepare information that a prospective landlord might request on your rental application
- Rental history: Current and past landlords
- Employment history: Current and past employers
- Credit information: Loans and credit cards
- Financial information: Checking and savings accounts
- Many utility companies will require deposits in order to begin utility service if you do not have a credit history. You may want to consult with a responsible friend or a parent on how to develop a strong credit rating.
Finding a place to rent
You can look for available apartments from the following sources:
I've found a place, now what?
- Questions to Ask a Potential Landlord when talking to a Landlord about a potential property you might want to rent.
- View the property or have someone you trust view it inside and out for you. We recommend that you never sign a lease without previously viewing the property.
- Take a thorough inventory of the property's condition using the Inventory Inspection Form with the landlord. This document may help you avoid unnecessary charges and may be crucial in retrieving your security deposit upon checkout. Note: the document is only binding if it is signed and dated by both the tenant and the landlord.
- Set up the utilities :
American Electric Power
AT & T (phone, internet)
City of Steubenville Water and Sewer
Comcast Cable (cable, internet)
Your Rights and Responsibilities as a Tenant
Occasionally, circumstances will come up between a landlord and tenant. It is important that you know and understand what your rights and responsibilities are as a tenant. A booklet entitled "A Guide to Living Off Campus" is available to you in the Student Life Office. This booklet contains information from the Ohio State Legal Services Association about tenant rights. You may also contact the Ohio State Legal Services Association directly at:
Ohio State Legal Services Association
406 Adam Street
Steubenville, OH 43952