Finding the right apartment takes time and planning. You don’t want to settle for a place because you are running out of time to secure a residence. If you have to be out of your current place by a deadline, you may feel stressed out.
Search in Advance
Start your search in advance, 60 to 90 days before you need to move into an apartment. Many locations will have vacancies within that timeframe. The current renters have already informed management of their move out date. You can schedule a time to see the place and if you like it, put down a deposit. Their goal is to keep the place occupied with the least amount of time between when one tenant moves out and the next moves in. They don’t make any money on the apartment when it sits empty.
Think about the contract type you need when you search for an apartment. If you plan to reside there for at least a year, the typical 12 month lease won’t be a concern. If you aren’t sure how long you will reside there before you have to move again, look for a place offering a 6 month lease or a month to month lease. Getting out of a longer contract can be expensive and tricky so avoid being locked in if your circumstances are up in the air.
How much can you afford each month without stretching your budget too thin? What is the overall cost of living there? Most apartments require a deposit and the first month of rent to move in. Will you pay utilities separately or are they included in the rent? If they are separate, what is the average monthly cost?
Size and Layout
How much space do you need? Some apartments have a basic one bedroom, one bathroom layout, What kind of kitchen design or layout do you want? Others have at least two bedrooms so you can have a guest room, a roommate, or even a home office. The square footage can influence the cost and demand for certain apartments.
Location and Parking
Another reason for the high demand with some apartments is the location. Certain areas will cost more than others. For example, an apartment in the heart of downtown or close to a college campus tends to be more expensive. Take a look at your budget and determine if an extra 20 minute commute each day to save hundreds on the rent due to location is a good trade off.
Find out all you can about the structure of an apartment building before you agree to live there. What type of soundproofing is part of the construction? It is annoying if you can hear your neighbours all around you. It is reassuring when you can maintain your privacy and so can they. This brings harmony to any apartment building. Does the structure allow pets? If so, what are the restrictions for weight and breeds? Do you pay extra each month for pets or an extra pet deposit?
Will it be reasonably easy to get to and from your apartment? What about when you bring home packages or groceries? Going up several flights of stairs won’t be ideal, especially if you have children. Are there elevators available?
Does each unit have its own controls for heating and cooling systems? Most apartments do, but some of the older structures don’t allow you to control those elements. It can be hard to stay comfortable in your unit when you can’t decide how hot or cold it will be.
What types of amenities does the apartment offer? A patio where you can relax and see the view around you is enticing. Does the place offer good security measures including cameras at the entrances? If parking in that area is a challenge due to limited spacing, an apartment building with assigned parking or a parking garage can be ideal. Extra perks including a pool and a gym included in your rent can be a great package.
Finding the right apartment takes time, and searching online can help you narrow it down. You can select availability based on price, size, location, and other variables. The more precise you make your search, the easier it is to pinpoint those that fit your specific wants and needs.
Word of Mouth
Ask your friends, family, and co-workers if they know of any great apartments available. They may live in a building with vacancies. They may know someone who is moving in the near future and they can get you details on when that place will be open.
It is important to read all the details about any apartment and avoid scams. Never send money online as a deposit for a place. Read the contract thoroughly before you sign it because it will be legally binding. If anything seems fishy, report it so it can be properly investigated by the authorities.
Real estate agent
Finding the right apartment and avoiding scams is easy when you work with a real estate agent. They offer much more with their services than just helping someone buy or sell property. They often have information on listings including apartments for rent.