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4 Tips to Help You Find a Place to Live Without Going Broke

Written by Posted On Thursday, 25 April 2019 21:38

Here's a wild recommendation experts have when it comes to renting, make 30% more income than your rent. Or keep your rent 30% lower than your income. Either way, what?!

Okay, it's no secret that the cost of rent is outrageous in most places, even when compared to that location's cost of living it is astronomically high. How on earth is anyone supposed to keep that kind of ratio between rent and income.

Have no fear, not all is lost. Check out these tips on finding a place to live without going broke. Cheap apartments aren’t always cheap, keep that in mind.

1. Search During the Off-Season

It might be helpful for you to know that most apartment leases are signed between April and August. While this also coincides with most of the advertised deals you may see available, it might still be best to wait.

Most of those deals enticing new renters while helpful aren't always the best deals available. During the off-season there is a little more wiggle room for negotiating. This is because fewer people are looking.

If you do find an apartment to rent offer to sign an 18 month lease. This will mean you're apartment will be ready to rent after you leave during peak season. This will go a long way to a landlord being willing to work with you. It shows you are thinking of them as well as yourself.

2. Find a Co-Signer or Roommate

Often times the best way to fin cheap and affordable housing is to split the rent with someone, such as a roommate, or to have someone co-sign the lease with you.

Having a roommate means that someone will share the responsibilities of the rent and utilities with you. The more roommates the lower your and everyone else's share of the rent will get.

Likewise, having someone to co-sign on your rental application, preferably someone with a better credit score than you will help to lower our rent. This is because renters will feel more comfortable knowing there is someone else vouching for you and who is willing to accept the financial responsibility alongside you.

3. Do Your Research

The research you’re doing here isn't about the location of the apartment, or the price ranges. Presumably you have already determined all of that. Here we mean know your stuff when it comes to the art of the deal.

Think of signing an apartment lease as being similar to buying a car. Know what the average price in the area for an apartment of that size is. Ask if there are any extra deposits or fees for pets and if the deposit is refundable.

Another important to ask is if the utilities are shared or are you responsible only for what you use. Depending on your past experiences and current financial situation this could be a major deal breaker.

It might also be good to know what your deal breakers are beforehand. Write any questions you have down and write any questions that come up during the conversation as well. This will help to ensure you are getting the right apartment for you and don't get yourself in a bind.

4. Don't Hesitate

Don't wait around for something better if an apartment you're currently looking at is a match. When you find the right apartment that meets your needs jump on it. Don't keep looking for an even more perfect apartment, and here's why.

The apartment you're looking at, that meets your needs and budget, may not meet your needs and budget the next day. Apartments are constantly changing rent, move-in costs, application fees and so on. Sometimes they go up and sometimes they go down. Usually, though they go up.

If, for some reason, you are still hesitant to make a move on the apartment you want, ask the leasing agent if the price will be changing soon. You might get lucky and the leasing agent might think your sold and will hold the unit a little longer at the same price to give you time to think about it.

But that's risky. If you find the unit you want, jump on it. Quality affordable apartments are hard to come by and don't usually last long before someone moves in.

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