Tampa Bay Rental Realtors
Named one of Tampa Bay's Top Property Management Companies, we're experts at providing a superior tenant experience.
Too often, the needs of tenants are neglected or not taken seriously. In fact, many real estate agents refuse to even work with renters. At Eaton Realty, we believe tenants are important and deserve the same level of concierge service we provide to everyone. When you rent with Eaton Realty, you can expect to be working with the area’s most experienced and professional Property Management Team.
With hundreds of properties to choose from, we’ll help you find just the right house for you to feel at home. Not only are our properties some of the cleanest and well-maintained, but we also add value by including services such as lawn care, fertilization, pool care, and our Resident Benefits Package. Establishing open communication and trust from the beginning is vital to our relationship.
AN EATON AGENT IS HERE TO HELP
When you're searching for your next Tampa Bay rental home, make sure you have someone in your corner looking out for your best interests. Our agents have years of experience helping tenants navigate the rental market. Whether an apartment, townhouse, or single-family home, your Eaton Realty agent can show them all, help you understand the application process, and is there when you're ready for another change. They are your REALTOR for life!
FAQs About Renting A Home In Hillsborough County
When looking for the perfect house to rent, there are several things you should consider before beginning your search. Calculate your monthly expenses to determine your budget, and remember that there are usually additional costs when you start renting, such as application fees, a security deposit, and the first and last month’s rent.
Research the area you plan to rent to learn about average rental rates and understand the neighborhood’s features and amenities. Working with a rental realtor is a great way to find a rental home that’s in your budget and meets your needs.
When you’ve found a home you’re interested in renting, you must fill out a rental application. If you’re applying for one of our rental homes, you can complete a rental application directly on our website. Depending on who you are renting through, there may or may not be an application fee.
Rental applications usually include your basic contact information, employment and income history, rental history, references, and permission to do a background check.
Rental applications often ask for references. They may ask for a name and contact information or allow you to attach a reference letter to your application. References can come from friends, family, or professional colleagues who know you well and can vouch for your character. Landlords ask for this information to ensure you’ll be a responsible tenant and will take good care of their property while you are living there. Landlords may also check with previous landlords and utility companies to verify your payment history and make sure you will be able to make monthly rent payments.
Landlords must verify that you are who you say you are before signing a rental agreement. Be prepared to show a driver's license or passport as proof of identity. The application process may also require you to use your smartphone’s camera to verify you match your photo ID.
A security deposit is a set amount of money that the renter pays at the beginning of the lease to guarantee that the house will be kept in good condition. The landlord holds the security deposit for the duration of the lease. It is returned to the tenant when the lease is terminated, granted that the property is still in good condition and no major repairs are needed after a move-out inspection.
Renters insurance protects your belongings in case of theft, fire, or natural disasters that cause damage to your property. The landlord has insurance to cover the house but not your belongings. Suppose a water leak in an upstairs bathroom leaks through the ceiling and damages your furniture on the first floor below. Without renters insurance, you will be responsible for the cost to replace the damaged furniture.
Check your lease agreement, as some landlords require proof of renters insurance before you can move in. It’s generally a good idea to have renters insurance to protect your belongings, whether required or not.
Talk to your landlord and check your lease agreement for the length of your lease before signing. You may have the flexibility to choose the length of lease that works best for you. Eaton Realty’s standard lease length is 1-year. Other durations may be possible upon approval. Many HOA’s restrict the length of leases with a minimum rental term. Short-term rentals under 6 months require taxes to be collected and remitted, so we do not offer short-term leases.
Your lease agreement will specify which utilities are included in the rent price (meaning they are paid for by your landlord) and which utilities you will be responsible for setting up and paying monthly. This can vary from one landlord to another. Utilities you may be responsible for paying could include gas, electricity, water, trash collection services, homeowners association fees, and internet. Trash collection and homeowner association fees are paid by the owner in nearly all of our properties.
Responsibilities for yard maintenance should also be laid out in your rental agreement. If your landlord has someone come out to cut the grass or do other yard work, they should let you know or tell you if this is something you will need to do yourself. They should also communicate if the neighborhood has any landscaping requirements that need to be met. Most Eaton Realty homes include both lawn maintenance and turf and shrub fertilization/pest control services. It’s important to consider that when comparing rental rates to properties that don’t include such services.
Eaton Realty uses a convenient online portal to handle maintenance requests. You can submit a maintenance request, upload photos of the issue, and chat with our maintenance team all through your Rentvine portal.
While living in your rental home, your landlord generally must stay out of the home. Exceptions include instances where repairs need to be made, necessary inspections need to occur, the property is being shown to potential future tenants or buyers, and an emergency situation has arisen. In most places, landlords are required to give reasonable notice if they need to enter your home, but this can vary by city.
Except in emergencies, Eaton Realty always schedules appointments no later than the day prior, often earlier.
Many renters are excited to decorate their rental house to make it feel more like home. But before you get too far, ensure you’re not violating any terms in your lease. Your rental agreement will outline changes you can and cannot make to your home. If not, check with your landlord about any changes you wish to make. Small things like hanging pictures are often not an issue, but painting or hanging large curtain rods or shelves may be problematic. If you get permission from your landlord to make a major change, be sure to get it in writing.
Exterior modifications must also be approved, sometimes not only by the landlord but also by the HOA. HOAs have strict rules regarding the exterior appearance of homes in the community.
Check your lease agreement to find out your landlord’s pet policy. Some rentals allow pets of any kind and size, some have size restrictions, and some may not allow any type of pets. These rules vary by property as some rules are defined by the homeowner's insurance policy, and some by the community if the home is in an HOA.
Properties managed by Eaton Realty require all pets to be screened and applicable pet fees, pet rent, and additional security deposits paid.
Also note that you are financially responsible for any damage your pet may cause to the home, particularly carpet replacement if your pet has accidents on the carpet.
Some landlords may not allow roommates, and some may choose to only allow couples or families. No matter how many roommates you plan to have, all roommates must be approved by the landlord and sign the lease agreement, and they will legally be considered co-tenants. This means that all roommates are legally responsible for the entire rent payment each month.
Be aware that if there is an issue with one roommate violating the lease agreement, the landlord can legally evict all roommates. Some landlords will choose not to exercise this right and may evict only the roommate causing an issue. Still, the remaining roommates will be responsible for the entire rent payment, and replacement roommates will need to be approved by the landlord and sign a lease agreement.
The general rule for occupancy is two heartbeats per bedroom. For example, a three-bedroom home will accommodate a maximum of 6 people regardless of age.
Carefully check your lease agreement before inviting visitors to stay with you in your rental home for an extended period. There is often a clause included that will place limitations on guests - for example, you might only be allowed a certain number of guests at a time, or there may be a specified time frame where guests can stay before they are considered to be living in the home, in which case they will need to be added to your lease.
Our leases do not require permission for guests to visit for 72 hours or less.
Some renters seek to save money by finding someone to rent a single room in their rental home or by subletting the entire place if they will be away for some time. You will have to check your rental agreement or talk to your landlord to determine if this is allowed. Typically, when you are living in a rental home, you are not permitted to sublet any portion of the property - you would have to add that person to your lease agreement as a roommate and share the rental costs instead.
If you get permission from your landlord to sublet your rental while you are away, be sure to get this in writing. Be aware that when you sublease, you are still responsible to the landlord for all of the lease terms - which means that if the person you are leasing to violates the original lease, you are legally on the hook. Another option could be assigning the lease, which means the person moving in temporarily takes over the original lease in your place while you are away.
Eaton Realty does not allow subletting or assignment of lease any lease agreement.
Sometimes life happens, and you need to change your plans before the end of your lease term. A clause in your lease agreement usually addresses the process for when this happens. There is usually a fee for vacating early. You must communicate and negotiate with your landlord if this is not addressed in the lease.
Eaton Realty provides tenants with several options when terminating a lease early. Contact your property manager to learn about your options and find the best solution for your situation.