Apartment hunting can be a real pain, especially if you are moving out of your parent’s home for the first time and have no clue about what you should be looking for in an ideal rental space.
You might be looking for a small apartment close to your office or university and require certain amenities such as a washing unit, a dishwasher, and a dryer. Many people would also prefer to live in an area that has close access to public transportation, parks, gyms, or shopping centers.
You won’t always find everything you are looking for, and the key here is to weigh all your options and needs and then choose the most suitable outcome. To make your apartment search easy and efficient, given below are five helpful tips:
- Set A Budget
An apartment search without a budget is like a chicken running around without a head. The first step to making your apartment search efficient is to have a fixed budget or a range that is affordable and doable for you. You should also have a set range for “wiggle room” that you allow given that you get your dream apartment in just the perfect location, with just the right amenities that you are looking for.
To create a budget range, you will have to calculate all your expenses, and saving percentages, and arrive at a number that you can afford to spend every month on your apartment. By doing so, you will be shortlisting all apartments beyond your reach and only looking at options that you can lease.
- Check If The Time Is Right
Yes, you heard it right – apartment search is equally seasonal as other consumer commodities, and before you commence your apartment search be sure to check whether the time is right. If you are looking for an apartment in the summer, while you may find overwhelmingly several properties available, all of them may be priced higher since the summer is when most people are looking for a new place to live.
However, if you can time your apartment search during October or through the holiday season, you will find plenty of spaces available at lesser rates since not many people are too adamant to move during the colder months.
- Know What To And Not To Look
You are most likely looking for a new apartment through apartment search websites, and whenever you look for things online, your search can get overwhelming very quickly.
Even if this is your plan, you cannot possibly be going to physically visit every apartment you see online because if you do so, after a few days every apartment will start looking the same to you and you will easily settle for something you don’t even like to get rid of the stress associated with visiting each space and checking its merits.
Hence, for the sake of not wasting your time and for your sanity, you should only visit apartments that you love during your online search. You shouldn’t bother with visiting any rental space that you half-heartedly like or aren’t too fond of. Also, try to club your apartment visits together and if you are heading out to see one apartment, be sure to check out two others in the vicinity to make the most out of your trip.
- Don’t Be Afraid To Negotiate
You simply shouldn’t be accepting whatever rental agreement a landlord presents to you because landlords are usually prepared for apartment dwellers to negotiate their rental prices, and hence they initially set a higher quote.
You should hence suggest a rental price lower than what the landlord asks you for, and set a rate keeping in mind the condition of the home, the annual increase, the rental cost of other properties in the area, and the amenities. You should also let the landlord know that you are considering other similar options so that they are more receptive to your negotiation tactics and are ready to come down to a price you approve.
- Maintain A Notepad
It can get difficult to keep track of all the apartments you visit, and hence it gets tough for you to compare different apartments to choose the best one for yourself. Hence, it is a good idea to maintain a notepad featuring details of all the apartments you visit, their area, the locality, the amenities available, and their proximity to your place of work or study. Once you have all this information in writing, you can easily compare all shortlisted apartments to arrive at the one that you love the most. Instead of a notepad, you can also maintain a spreadsheet and update all data accordingly.
Looking for an apartment can be a stressful event especially if you are a first-timer or looking for an apartment in a new city. The above-mentioned tips will help you make your apartment search easy, efficient, and breezy.
I liked your idea to take notes to help keep track of all of the different apartments you tour. My sister has been wondering how to make her final decision on an apartment after she tours a few options around town. I’ll have to share this with her to try out, since it seems like it should help.