Renting an apartment does not involve the hassles and tremendous prep work involved in buying a house. However, it does not also mean that you’ll just shift into the first apartment where the landlord offers you cheap rent.
Choosing a rental apartment requires you not only to consider the monthly rent but also to consider the whole picture such as the neighborhood, median rent prices, proximity to workplace, etc.
We’ve discussed some factors that will help you determine whether you’re getting a good deal on your rental apartment:
Work on Rental Websites
Searching for rentals does not mean that you have to be out in the street and check every single unit that seems reasonable. Physical searching isn’t practical, and it consumes more time and money than online searching.
Many rental websites are there, and some of them have generous listings of rental units. These sites give you the option of searching with customized variables such as monthly rent, neighborhood, size of the apartment, etc. Some sites even allow the users to analyze and compare rent prices. Many local sites are there too that will help you finding the best deals in your chosen area.
Know the Neighborhood
Knowing the neighborhood is an essential prerequisite for making a good deal. Even if you find a rental in a nice apartment complex within your budget, the neighborhood may fall short of your expectations.
If you’ve fixed eyes on an apartment, drive around the area a couple of times at day and night. It will help you figure out about the traffic, noise, and parking condition of the area. You may also find out if it has a branch of your favorite diner or retail shop.
Calculate the Tax Rates
Some of you may have raised eyebrows because taxes are a concern for the buyers and homeowners. Right? Well, not exactly! Wage taxes are applicable in many cities and states. So, if you are moving to a new city such as Philadelphia, you’ll have to deal with a 4% wage tax, which is likely to make a sizable chunk of your paycheck.
Find out about the taxes and other fees before moving into a new county or city so that you face no problem covering up your monthly expenses in the new place.
Check the Building’s Maintenance
Even an old apartment can make a good deal if it’s well maintained. You surely don’t want to trade low rent for peeling paint, leaky roof, broken showers, or drafty windows. Ask the property manager when the building was last renovated or updated. Besides, take a good look around the apartment to find out if there’s any damage or if any area needs repair.
Asking your landlord to lower the rent won’t cost you anything. However, just asking or making a simple request won’t do the trick sometimes. Find out some points that the owner is likely to consider in exchange for cutting the rent. Flaunt your good credit score or offer the landlord to stay longer than one year. Most homeowners will negotiate if the renter is willing to sign a long-term lease.