40% of renters lose sleep when looking for a new apartment. It’s a long and stressful process that can take months of effort.
The best way to ease your mind and prevent renter’s remorse is to arm yourself with knowledge. You’ll go into the process knowing what to expect and what you want in your new living space.
Read on to learn what to consider when renting an apartment.
Always take a tour of every unit you’re considering. Create a checklist of the most important features it needs to have.
Look at the nearby area and think about whether or not it’s close enough to your work or school. See if it has enough parking. Check the unit’s plumbing, appliances, and electrical outlet.
Sorting through all of your options can be one of the most time-consuming parts of the process, so click for more advice on where and how to begin your apartment hunt.
The Rental Application and Lease
There are two essential pieces of paperwork you’ll have to submit before you can rent an apartment.
The rental application goes to your landlord. It provides them with your:
- Contact information
- Proof of identification
- Proof of income
- Application fees
- Vet records if you have pets
Make sure to ask them about their credit and income requirements before you send it in. This helps you know if you’re a candidate and saves you the time of sending in an application you know will be rejected.
The rental agreement, also known as a lease, lets you know what your landlord expects of you. It tells you how much rent is, when it’s due, and how much you’ll have to pay if it’s late. It details their policies on important areas such as pets, quiet hours, and cleanliness. It also includes an expiration date.
Reading your lease is one of the most important parts of renting an apartment. It’ll answer almost all of your questions, but you should ask your landlord about anything that doesn’t make sense.
The average asking rent in America is $2,016 a month. That’s 12.95% lower than the average monthly mortgage payment, but for 41% of renters, it makes up more than 35% of their income.
The general guideline is to never spend more than 30% of your income on rent. Budget for that amount, and don’t forget to include other miscellaneous costs such as:
- Application fees
- Rental deposits
- First and/or last month’s rent
- Pet deposits or monthly pet rent
- Storage units
More Tips for Renting an Apartment
Trying to find an apartment you can afford with all the features you need can be a stressful experience. It gets easier when you take the time to prepare and gather the right information.
Tour all of your rental options and note down the pros and cons of each one. Prepare your rental application and read the lease from top to bottom. Create a reasonable budget that includes all the costs of renting an apartment.
Read the rest of our content for more tips on finding the best apartment for you.