Looking for a new apartment is an overwhelming undertaking for many renters, and understandably so. When browsing for apartments online or in person, there are many considerations to take into account. For instance, if you are living on your own and value having a short commute to work, finding an apartment near your office should remain the priority during your search.
If you are looking for an apartment to share with a friend or roommate, enlisting your roommate’s help in the viewing process is essential for the long-term satisfaction of all parties involved.
One of the biggest mistakes apartment hunters make is rushing the process and not taking the time to do a little research ahead of time. Why does research matter? Consider that getting out of a lease before it expires is difficult and costly. Furthermore, if you know what items are negotiable ahead of time, you can save some money on your monthly rent and other costs.
Taking the time to understand the market and figure out your personal deal-breakers is crucial. Once you have determined where you want to live and what you absolutely need to have in the apartment and around the apartment to be happy, the process of finding the right apartment becomes easier. Use the following information to develop your own checklist when you begin walking through the various models in your area.
Factors to Consider Before Beginning Your Search
Finding the best apartment is made easier when you have established what amenities are considered a priority before beginning your search. If you are looking for an apartment with laundry hookups or updated appliances, you will need to rule out options without these amenities. Those are not factors you can change.
Additionally, you may want to prioritize the location of your new apartment over the contents of the apartment itself. If you want a short commute to work, selecting an apartment located closer to your office should be the top priority during your search. While you may not find the apartment ideal in other regards, you will still be meeting the most important requirement for your new home.
For those who want to be conveniently located near restaurants, shops and entertainment, you will also need to be mindful of location when searching for the best apartment for you. The same can be said for individuals who are searching for a quiet location removed from the bustle of the city.
If you are planning to move into a new apartment with a friend, spouse or roommate, you should consult with him or her to create your checklist. Whoever is living in the apartment with you will need to be equally satisfied with the unit to prevent any potential issues from arising in the future. Something as simple as discussing room size preferences and viewing an apartment unit together could save you from disagreements once you have begun to cohabitate.
Accessibility and Convenience Are Key
Whether you want to live in the suburbs or in the heart of a major city, considering the accessibility and convenience of a location will prove useful to you as you continue your search for the best apartment.
You may want to spend time researching the public transportation available in a desired area, as this can factor into your overall decision between one unit and another.
If you do not have a car and you will need to rely on public transportation to get to and from work and the grocery store, establishing the accessibility of an apartment is crucial. Finding an apartment on a designated bus or train route will help you to access the conveniences you will need to maintain your current living situation.
For those who have a car, finding an apartment in a convenient location may still prove useful in terms of money management. The less time you spend in your car, the less money you will spend on gas and maintenance fees. By selecting an apartment located close to work, entertainment or transportation, you are cutting down on the amount you spend per month to maintain your vehicle. If you are looking for new ways to save money after finding your new apartment, utilizing public transportation is one of the easiest ways to do this.
How to Find the Best Apartment If You Are Disabled
Finding an apartment when you are disabled can present unique challenges, and you will need to be prepared in advance to ensure you are avoiding any serious issues. You will want to find a landlord who is flexible on some of the apartment rules. For example, if you need a guide dog or a therapy dog to assist you on a daily basis, you may need to speak with a potential landlord about the possibility of lifting a no pet policy. Be aware that in most cases, a landlord must accommodate these requests by law.
If you need an apartment with accessibility features, you will want to spend time researching available options in your target area prior to setting up viewings. Most landlords will stipulate whether the apartment is wheelchair accessible or if it meets other qualifying accessibilities within the listing for the property. You do not want to spend time searching through available apartment listings only to find out a potential match does not have the accessibility features you require.
Do not hesitate to reach out to a landlord directly via phone call or email to have a conversation about accessibility features in your desired apartment. Some individuals may simply forget to list this important information in an advertisement and speaking with him or her directly will help to gain the knowledge necessary to make the best decision for you. If you have difficulty finding an accessible apartment, many landlords be willing to make the apartment more accessible for you, especially if the necessary renovations are small.
By Melanie Henson –