Here are a few very important things to consider before you sign a lease. Do not put money down unless you are sure you want the apartment. You might be legally entitled to get your money back until the landlord formally accepts you as a tenant, but that money might be diffiuclt to recover.
Also, remember to calculate the anticipated costs of the apartment’s utilities (heat, electricity, etc.) to make sure the apartment is affordable.
Know what is expected of you in terms of pre-payments or a finder’s fee and check to make sure the apartment is in acceptable condition. Ask the neighbors about the landlord’s reputation.
If there is a problem with plumbing or broken appliances, check the arrangments for a response to an “after hours” emergency.