After 18 months of living and getting through a pandemic, more first-time renters are looking for a new place than last year as the result of many young adults choosing to stay home and live with their families.
While moving out is a large milestone and often very exciting, it is easy to make mistakes when unaware of critical details. By knowing these common mistakes ahead of time, you can save money and lots of headaches in the future.
- Looking for apartments too early to too late. Young people often look for apartments three months or two weeks out before their desire move in date. Both of these are either too far or near. People believe that units to quickly and worry if they don’t search early enough they won’t be guaranteed to find a place. An ideal timeframe is to make a decision 24 to 30 days before you want to move in. “An apartment available July 1st will most likely be listed June 1st. You will see the most recent apartments available and can apply at that time, and it only takes a day for the application to process” (CNBC Make It).
- Renting a new place in high season. April to September is often when people are apartment hunting due to recent graduation and people simply want to move in better weather. Moving during months such as December or January can often lead to cheaper rentals, more available units, no fees, or even sometimes free months.
- Only considering a unit if it has a specific amenity. Do you really need an on-site tanning bed and valet trash service? Being flexible opens up more options when searching for an apartment. By having less strict items on your wish list you allow yourself to find an even bigger or cheaper place than you originally though you were going to find.
- Not carefully reading the lease. Signing a lease is never a good time to breeze through the terms and conditions and click agree. You want to make sure you are aware of all the rules from visitor protocols, the process for repairs, and even options on painting and decorating. If you skip reading your lease you may end up with additional fees or charges after going against the agreement you signed.
- Not asking the important questions. When touring an apartment for the first time it is not surprising to get caught up in the excitement of a new place. Make sure to create a list of questions you want answered before considering the unit. Important things to ask can be: How does trash collection work? Is parking available and what would the cost be? Is the apartment I am touring the same model and layout as the one I will rent?
- Not considering their future. When applying to rent a new place, property managers will often contact previous managers to inquire about what kind of resident you were at your old place. You don’t want to end up getting denied your dream place because you didn’t pay rent on time at your last apartment or you ignored community guidelines such as repeatedly parking in other tenants spots. You’ll want to have a strong reference from your former housing provider so remember to always be a responsible resident (The Washington Post).
Article By: Jimmy Im and Robert Pinnegar