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Whether you are renting a home for the first time or moving into your third or fourth home, finding the right place to live isn’t easy. Here is a list of essential things to remember.

1. Start searching for a home when you are ready to occupy it within one or two months to secure a good deal.

2. Search verified property listings. Make a shortlist based on your needs — number of rooms, type of home, etc.

3. Talk only to a Rera-certified property agent and ask about transport links (metro, bus stops), road networks, views, parking spaces, rules for pets, etc. When everything matches your needs, ask for an on-site visit.

4. During the viewing check for the cell phone and Wi-Fi connection.

5. Take as many photos to review later, and list any defects. Get them rectified before you move in, and get maintenance terms written in the agreement.

6. Check the security and amenities (gym, pool, park, supermarkets, clinics or schools) in the vicinity.

7. Evaluate the traffic condition during peak hours, and any noise element (traffic, new construction, etc.).

8. Check the home layout – room sizes, kitchen style, storage options, open spaces and white goods for semi-furnished or furnished units.

9. Discuss the rental terms with the landlord, whether AC/chiller fees are included, number of cheques, deposit amount, maintenance and contract start date and duration.

10. Get your documents ready (passport copy, residency visa, Emirates ID) for the contract.

11. Security deposit is 5 per cent of the rent for unfurnished and 10 per cent for furnished. Agency fee: 5 per cent.

12. Review the tenancy terms thoroughly before signing the contract.

13. Ask for the final Dewa bill of the unit. If there are outstanding payments, request the landlord to settle it.

14. Register the contract on Ejari and request an NOC for moving furniture and belongings.