When searching for apartments for rent, the number one question you need to ask yourself is, “can I afford it?” When you begin your search, try finding apartments that are only a third of your income. That is, your monthly rent should only be equal to or less than about 33% of what you make in a month.
Whether you’re moving from one apartment to another, or finally getting out of your parents’ place, finding one that’s right for you can be hard. There are a lot of factors you need to consider when searching for apartments for rent, but the cost should probably be the first thing you consider. And while rent is the biggest expense, it may not be the only one. It’s important to look at what is included, such as utilities, phone, cable, Internet, and whatever else. You may find what seems to be affordable but then discover that almost nothing comes included. It’s usually better to opt for a place with a slightly higher rent but with most utilities included.
You also have to consider the costs of moving in. Most complexes require that you pay first month’s rent and the security deposit up front. You may also need to pay for a moving truck to move all your stuff. For this reason, you may want to start saving up a bit in advance.
What else is important when searching for apartments for rent? Location is definitely a big one. How far away is your potential new home from your job or school? Is it near any grocery stores? Sometimes it’s worth paying a little more in rent for the convenience of a location than to spend time and money driving to get to the places you need to go.
Before getting an apartment, you will have to make sure you have all the proper documentation together. This may include pay stubs from your job to ensure that you are employed and can afford the apartment, as well as references from past landlords and professional colleagues. In some cases, it may be necessary for you to get someone to co-sign for you. This is especially true for young people moving into their first apartment. Essentially, a co-signer is someone who is saying that if you do not pay your debt, they are responsible for doing so.
Lastly, if you are moving in with a roommate, it is important to know that they are reliable. You do not want to end up with someone who does not pay their fair share of the rent or ends up skipping out on you. Sometimes the search for a roommate can be as important as the search for the living space itself. Make sure you know who you’re moving in with before you commit to anything.