Looking for a place to live is turning more and more difficult with every passing day. With climbing prices for leasing apartments, high demand, and increasing check-ups performed upon the leasing party from the side of the property owners, the market has become a real battleground. To prepare you better for combat, read the following practical apartment hunting tips.
Prior to the search
A) Wish list
Sit down and make a wish list about the apartment you have in mind. State clearly all the elements you are looking for: parquet floors, high ceilings, ample kitchen, wall-to-wall carpet, etc. Like wise, establish what kind of special features are you looking for: parking place, laundry rooms, fitness facility, cable hook up, etc. In addition, think about the desired location of the new home. Also, decide if you want or not to make use of an apartment real state service or apartment brokers. Finally, determine a tentative rent sum you are able and willing to pay and whether you are looking for the utilities to be included or not. This kind of brainstorming will help you concentrate on the apartment for rent you are looking for, thus saving you time and effort in the search.
B) Proof of financial stability and other documents
Organize some information to have handy the moment the landlords inquire about your financial stability and background. Prepare a resume, the first two pages of last year’s tax refunds, letter from your employer (or from a CPA if you are a freelancer or entrepreneur) stating your monthly income/salary and salary slips, recent bank statements, recent pay stubs, and credit card and bank account numbers. Likewise, prepare a valid photo ID (driver’s license), letters and numbers for personal and business references, two certified checks in case you decide to close the deal with the property owner on the spot, and co-signer information in case you will need it.
Look for the apartment for rent of your dreams through the online or offline Classified Ads, landlords, apartment real state and management companies, sites and publications, and flat free agencies (non-realtor free listing resources that charge a membership fee of approximately $60-250).
Set a few appointments to see a diverse number of leasing apartments on the same day/week. One of the best apartment hunting tips is to create and bring an organized comparative table where to write the details of each apartment for later reference and evaluation. Try to see the apartments during day time, and preferable during the busy hours of the day to assess the noise, air quality, and light levels as well as to make sure you will see any actual flaws or damage that could later on be awarded to you. If you take the apartment, attach to the lease a list of any elements and features needing repair. Check the apartment (water pressure, electrical outlets, closet space, capacity of the water heater, heating system, etc) and ask as many questions as you like about the lease and/or the apartment. Read the lease carefully before signing it.