Renting your first apartment can be a daunting and stressful task if you are unprepared. However, if you do adequate research ahead of time, the renting process becomes far less overwhelming. At the Rental Xperts, we are offering these 5 tips to help reduce stress for first-time renters.
1. Set a Budget and Factor in Extra Costs
Before starting your apartment search, know what you can afford on housing and living costs. Set a realistic budget for yourself, and be sure to consider extra costs like utility bills. Common costs that aren’t included with rent are:
Try to spend around 30% of your annual income on housing costs, and ask the landlord for estimations on extra costs.
2. Check Out the Apartment
Always make sure to look the apartment over in-person. You will also want to scope out the surrounding area. Ask yourself the following questions when checking out apartments:
- Is the building clean and well-kept?
- Do the neighbors/fellow tenants seem friendly and happy?
- What will the commute be like to and from work?
- Could you see yourself living there?
After seeing the apartment and neighborhood in-person, you will know if it’s a desirable living situation for you.
3. Know the Landlord’s Reputation
Consider what it will be like living in the landlord’s building. If possible, ask current tenants or search for reviews online about the landlord of the building. If you believe there will be problems with the landlord, don’t rent from them.
4. Read and Understand the Lease
Although dull and wordy, the lease contains essential information for renters. Always read through the lease and understand what you’re committing to before signing.
If need be, bring someone else along to have an extra set of eyes reading over the lease. Don’t fall victim to the “fine print” landlords might use to take advantage of tenants.
5. Consider Renter’s Insurance
Depending on the length of your lease, you may want to purchase renter’s insurance as an added safeguard to living with many other occupants. You can find affordable insurance plans that fall within your budget and offer peace of mind during your stay in your apartment.
The Rental Xperts hopes these 5 tips make your apartment search a breeze. Do your research, and you will love the place you call “home.”
If you are in the market to rent your first property, don’t hesitate to contact us at (760) 791-9583. We can help you find the first rental property that is right for you and guide you through the process to eliminate as much stress as possible.