Apartment Searching? What to look out for
Be Smart Know Your Limit
Apartment Hunting Tips
Having just helped my younger brother find an apartment I figured I would make a quick Hub about the whole process to help others.
1. Know your budget. Know how much you can afford every month. If you determine that you can afford to spend only $800 on an apartment, then stick with $800, not $850 or $885. Those extra few dollars will open a whole in your budget which will lead to trouble later on down the road. Be aware of what you are required to pay for. Examples can include garbage, electricity, heating, and water. Add that to your monthly cost. Or try to find an apartment where some of those are already included in the rent and are not separate.
2. Get some referrals. Ask around, and hit the pavement. Sometimes the good places are not advertised in the paper or online. They may have a sign in the window or posted to a light pole. Ask friends and family if they know of some places for rent. Ask friends and family for referrals check your local gym club for a board where they allow postings. Check the local college campus also, sometimes there are postings on campus somewhere, just ask around or call the colleges help desk about where to look.
3. Be prepared to handle your landlord. Some people are easy to work with some are not. Don't take it personal. Your landlord will want to make sure that you can pay the rent by checking your credit and verifying your employment. So know what is on your credit report or be prepared to explain it to the landlord if they are willing to listen. You can get a free copy of your credit report at www.annualcreditreport.com . Have names and numbers of the friends and family and former employers so you can reference them for your landlord. Have your checkbook ready just in case the landlord is willing to give you the place right away. Be ready to pay the deposit to hold the apartment that you like. If you sign a lease, read it carefully ask your friends and family to look it over. Its a legal contract that you are signing. Make sure you ask all the questions and get all the fine detail out of the way so there are no surprises later on down the road.
Knowledge is power Remember that.