VOLUME 2RNote from the EditorThe first one-bedroom rental I got was an off-campus apartment in college. I was ecstatic to use my college housing tuition to pay for rent. But when I think back on it, I have no idea how I filtered through which property manager or Realtor to use. I just picked the first one who looked OK and went with that company.

Several apartment and condo rentals later, and after living in three different states, I’ve recognized the signs of who to avoid and who not to. Although I lucked out and loved my first rental ($225 for a one-bedroom with a porch), every rental didn’t have a happy ending.

A couple involved shady landlords and property managers. So at Go4Rent, we’re hoping we can help you skip past those risks by reading “Is the Landlord a Scam Artist?” and “Not Too Hot, Not Too Cold, Finding the Realtor Who’s Just Right.”

As a current condo owner (and former condo board president), I’ve learned a lot about how out-of-state and in-state landlords handle communication with their tenants. Sometimes it resulted in chaotic relationships; other times it worked out as seamlessly as if the landlord lived next door. Which category does your tenant-landlord relationship fall into? Check out “Out-of-State Landlords: Are They ‘Out of Mind’ With Tenants?” and let us know.

Are you worried about being able to rent at all, especially with the uptick in housing rentals? Read “Stand Out from Other Rental Applicants” to push your way to the top of the application stack. If your financial background isn’t top-tier, there’s still a chance for you. But you (and your Realtor) have to know exactly what to do. Follow the steps in “Damaged Credit, Prior Broken Lease, Self-Employed: How Do I Get Approved to Rent?

Lastly, although social isolation from COVID-19 has come and gone, and people are back to work (maskless and with masks), some of us are still trying to make our home feel even more comfortable. If your lease allows you to make some interior design changes, could a breakfast nook be at the top of your list? If so, read our “Quick Take” this month: “Are Breakfast Nooks Practical In Today’s Homes?” to find out how to go about investing (or installing) one.

We hope this second issue answers questions you may already have and some you didn’t even know to ask. Is there a topic you’d like us to talk about? Contact me at shamontiel.vaughn@go4rent.com. We look forward to hearing from you!

Shamontiel L. Vaughn, Editor-in-Chief
About Shamontiel:Shamontiel L. Vaughn has been in the publishing industry for 17 years as a newspaper reporter, a web editor, social media specialist and a print editor. Her areas of expertise include K-12 and adult education textbooks; local and nationwide news; and health news. She's also completed approximately 235 interviews in a variety of areas, including business management; entertainment; internet technology; law (entertainment, business and real estate); nursing; and travel. Some of her bylines can be found in the Chicago Defender, Chicago Tribune and CBS Chicago.

The unapologetic dog lover also owned two prior dogs (German Shepherd and Labrador Retriever mix) before becoming a two-year dog walker (510 walks with 89 different dogs) and adopting a third dog of her own on Juneteenth 2021: a Hound mix named Junee. When she's not writing, editing or playing with her dog, she's a current condo owner, former condo board president and treasurer, and a five-year officer for a community Toastmasters club.