The vast majority of Americans have been renters at one point or another. In fact, today at least 1/3 of Americans are currently renting their homes. This means that most of us have gone through the long and tenuous process of searching for an apartment for rent. With rental prices on the rise, it is imperative to enter into this search with the valuable information of knowing how, when and where to find the most affordable apartment for rent in your area. Here are 6 tips that could help you on your way.
Know Your Season
Learning the popular move times in your area is integral to making the search for an apartment to rent easy and affordable. Hunting for your property during peak move times is sure to bring you face to face with rental prices which have been driven up due to increased demand. Research your areas “off-season” by considering the following:
- Are you in an area that experiences inclement weather? People tend to avoid moving during these times, which means it could be the perfect time for you to pounce on the apartment that is just right for you.
- What is your proximity to any universities? Demand is sure to fluctuate with the school year and in fact, these areas typically experience the highest turnover rate in between semesters. Knowing this can help you to avoid fighting with a million other people for the same property.
When you are well informed about the height of your rental season, it becomes easier to seek out properties during the “off” season, where landlords are much more likely to cut you a deal.
Consider New Construction
For some, this may seem counterproductive, but searching for new construction rentals has many perks. For one thing, new complexes have many more apartments for rent and they are motivated to get them filled as quickly as possible. Due to the amount of rentals, owners are also more flexible in the negotiations they are able and willing to make. The majority of new construction complexes will typically offer the first month of rent free and oftentimes may even throw in additional bonuses such as free parking spaces or greater amenities. Depending on your personal budget, these things may make the new construction option work well for you.
When starting the search for an apartment to rent, it is easy to get caught in the trap of becoming hyper-focused on the exact details of what you are looking for. Being flexible with your search is far more likely to produce quick and affordable results. First, consider expanding your search area. Just including an extra mile in each direction could offer a much higher availability of properties without greatly impacting your commute. If you find a property that has your perfect location but needs some TLC, speak with the landlord about negotiating the rent in exchange for you making some upgrades throughout the course of your rental agreement. Lastly, think about how valuable the amenities are to you. If the added gym and pool contribute to the high cost of your rental, maybe it would make more sense to join a gym at a lower cost and rent a cheaper apartment.
Location Within a Complex
Each apartment for rent is not created equal, even if they are identical units within the same complex. Factors such as view, lighting within the unit, proximity to the parking lot, floor level, and even how often the stairs leading to the apartment are used, all play a big factor in the rental price. If you are willing to compromise on these features, you may be able to land yourself a much better deal.
If you’ve found your dream apartment for rent, but it is still just above your price range, consider finding a roommate and looking at a larger unit within the same complex. Having a combined budget can vastly expand your search and easily knock off $200-300 worth of rent per month per person.
When you have decided on your perfect apartment for rent, be a step ahead of the process by having all of your paperwork prepared. Consider creating a “rental resume” which includes a reference letter from a previous landlord, a copy of your credit report, your last rental agreement, employment verification and any pertinent information about your pets. Landlords are much more likely to negotiate with a tenant they feel is reliable.
Looking for a Great Apartment for Rent in Hattiesburg?
By now, you’ve seen how many factors can affect your search for an affordable apartment for rent. Working with a skilled rental property manager can help to ensure the ease and success of your hunt. If are seeking to either rent or invest in Hattiesburg apartment communities contact us at Hattiesburg Apartments. As the most accredited property management team in the Hattiesburg area, we are confident that we can make your rental dream a reality. Search through our properties today!