Looking For Apartments for Rent
There are a number of things that every individual should be wary of when looking for Apartments for rent. Depending on the area that you are looking at apartments for rent, the space you need, if you have any pets, and what you can afford, there will be a number of factors that you will need to consider.
What to look for in an apartment for rent
When looking for an apartment for rent there are a number of ways of doing a search. Depending on the city that you are looking for an apartment in it may be beneficial to hire a rental agent. A rental agent will be abreast of all the rental properties in the area. The costs, utilities, etc. There are numerous apartments in every city and the amount of money that a rental agent will cost you will be minimal compared to the extra cost you will incur by getting stuck in a bad lease.
Search, search, search. It could take a while to find the apartment that you really want. You should narrow apartments for rent down to location. What kind of neighborhood is it, is there an elevator or is it a walkup, how far from the metro/subway, do they allow pets, etc. These are all questions you should ask that will help you narrow your search for apartments for rent. You should also put the word out for rent controlled apartments. These are apartments for rent that have low rent valued in order to accommodate low and middle income individuals. Ask friends, co-workers, etc. to ask around for you. Most rent control apartments are in buildings that were built prior to 1949 in order to accommodate returning GIs.
When you find the apartment for rent that you want you must ensure that it is within your budget. You should allot 30% of your gross salary towards your rent. This means that 30% of your salary, before taxes, should be your budget. Take that number, divide by 12 and you should have the amount of money you should be budgeting for rent. This will allow you to invest in savings as well as possible future home ownership.
Be willing to wait for the right place at the right price. Rental prices are cyclical. At some points in the year there will be numerous apartments for rent and competition will drive down prices. At other times, mainly the winter, there aren’t many options out there and those that do exist will be costly.
You should also keep a renter’s resume. This includes previous locations that you have lived at, landlords information, employment information, credit reports, etc. Find out about the lease agreement; who pays for what?; what kind of improvements are permitted and will the tenant be reimbursed for those improvements.
Most importantly is to understand the tenants rights. Look through your State’s statute on landlord tenant law so you can be aware of what the landlord may or may not do.