When it's time to look for your first apartment or time to find for a new one, there are a few things you should keep in mind.
Here at Ayre & Oxford, we have all the information you need to think about when it's time to hunt for your new apartment.
Make up a wish list.
Before you start looking at apartment listings, start by making a list of everything you'd like to have in an apartment. You can add everything from 'must have' items to 'wish I could' have items.
Create a budget.
Remember to include all living expenses, transportation costs (gas, car payments, bus tickets, etc.), entertainment, and savings. Rent and utilities shouldn't account for more than 30% of your monthly income.
Do your research.
Start by finding an area and neighbourhood that you like. From there, check on the buildings in the area to find listings and reviews. Social media is a good start and can sometimes show you reviews.
Before you visit your first listing, you should be prepared with references. Take your references to each apartment you visit. If you have never rented before, your references can include your parents, employer, or a long term neighbour.
Visit the property a few times.
Check out the area at different times of the day. A building can have a completely different vibe from day to night, and it's important to look at the houses along the street as well to see what the neighbourhood is really like.
Once you find a place you like, take a closer look:
- Open cupboards, closets, and check out appliances. Ask yourself if it's sufficient space for storage, cooking, etc.
- Check the cell service in each room. Use your cell phone and check the reception in each room, especially if you don't plan to use a landline.
- Take measurements. You will want to make sure your main furniture will fit through the doors. Don't trust your memory, write all the measurements down. *Tip: Record your furniture measurements before you head out and take them with you.
Read the lease.
If you decided to take the apartment, thoroughly read the lease. Understanding what you are agreeing to is important before signing!
Remember, apartment hunting shouldn't be rushed. Give yourself adequate time for your search. Ayre & Oxford has friendly apartment managers that are ready to help. Contact us today to ask about our current listings or book a tour.