Glossary of Housing Terms
A small apartment without a kitchen. Sometimes a hot plate or microwave is provided.
One room for living, eating and sleeping. The bathroom is separate.
Single or Studio
A single room apartment with a small kitchen and a bathroom.
One Bedroom Efficiency
A large single room that has been converted into a one bedroom by dividing the room with doors. An efficiency apartment should be smaller and cheaper than a normal one bedroom.
A homeowner sometimes has a smaller structure behind or next to their property that can be used as a private living space. Size and features vary. Sometimes it is a converted garage or pool house.
Townhouse, Condominium (Condo) or Duplex
A private home or very spacious and luxurious apartment that sometimes has its own laundry, pool and recreation facilities. Sometimes this refers to a small home that is attached by at least one shared wall to another home. In Lawrence these can be quite spacious.
A legal contract signed by both the manager and the renter regarding the length of stay, price and conditions of a rental agreement. It is important to not sign a lease for more than the amount of time you will stay. You are responsible for rent during the entire length of the lease. Violation of the lease agreement can result in a heavy financial penalty. Residents should understand all of the conditions of the lease before signing. Any negotiated variation should be set out in writing, initialed and dated by both the tenant and the manager as an amendment to the lease. Typical leases in Lawrence are for one year at a time.
A process in which the landlord verifies your credit history and confirms your bank information. International scholars who do not have a credit history in this country should not need to pay for a credit check, but it may be necessary to negotiate an agreement with the landlord in this case.
Deposit/ Security Deposit
An additional amount you must pay when moving into an apartment (usually no more than one month’s rent) to guarantee occupancy, payment of rent, repair of damages and professional cleaning after you leave. In most cases, the deposit is returned to you in full, if there are no damages to your apartment at the end of your stay. Inspect the apartment carefully when moving in and record any damages, so you won’t be charged when moving out.
First, Last, Deposit
This means that to move in, you must pay the first and last month’s rent amount, plus the security deposit amount. Most rental apartments require this, but it is possible to find those that only require the deposit amount and the first month’s rent.
Payment made for living accommodations, usually on a monthly basis.
The fee for gas, electricity, cable television and water. Plan on spending an extra $25-$100 per month depending on your lifestyle. Some scholars are careful and find “gas stoves” and “non-halogen lamps” use less energy.
A special arrangement where you live in someone’s apartment in their place. Sublets are attractive because they are often short-term opportunities with furnished rooms and no deposit. However, it is usually best to ask the person renting if their manager or landlord knows about your agreement, in case the lease prohibits you from taking over the lease.
A/C or Air
BR or BDRM
A rental unit comprised of two ground floor or “garden” apartments and two second floor apartments
2/2 or 3/2
The first number indicates the number of bedrooms in the apartment. The second number indicates the number of bathrooms. Bathroom facilities include bath tub and/or shower, toilet (WC), and wash basin.
All Bills Paid. Your utilities (water, electricity, gas, sewage, garbage collection) have been included in your rent. You only have to arrange for telephone, cable television and/or internet service.
Washing machine and clothes dryer are provided.