Three reasons why renting in Atlanta is still a great idea
In a buyer-friendly real estate market, there are still plenty of reasons to rent. Two residents give their insights on the benefits of renting.
Atlanta is a buyers’ market—yet it is also a renters’ market. Those looking for a property in the city have a slew of affordable options to choose from. Amanda Santander and Avery Jarrell, who recently began their apartment hunt, share their top three motivations for renting in Atlanta.
Flexibility. One thing that tenants prize is the flexibility of renting. For Amanda Santander, a student at Emory, renting provided the option of mobility without large financial commitments. Amanda knew immediately that she wanted to rent. “We felt like we had plenty of options when we first began the search for a home. We decided on renting an apartment because it was the most cost-effective option for a student. And I’ve never been to Atlanta before. Renting would give us more flexibility to stay in Atlanta or move elsewhere once I finished my degree.”
Renting opened hours of free time for Avery, who also owns a home outside of the city. “I’ve owned a home before—mowing, pulling weeds, repainting the deck, the whole nine yards. Done.” He chops the air for emphasis. “I wanted a smaller place closer to my job that would be easier to take care of. As in, I don’t really have to do much of the ‘caring’ outside of the unit. I’m glad to have someone else lay down the mulch.”
Ample Availability. Renters in Atlanta have plenty of options. From eco-friendly conversions in the city to spacious new developments near the suburbs, renters can find just about any living accommodation that they desire at prices well below the national average.
With an abundance of options, it’s a good idea to determine the features you must have in your rental versus those that are simply conveniences. This process will help you narrow down the search.
“I’ve heard horror stories about Atlanta traffic,” Amanda laughs. “Being as close to the school as possible was a priority even if it meant getting a smaller place for the same price. I need time to study not stop and go in traffic. We just got married so it would be nice to explore without factoring in a commute.” Amanda targeted her search to ten miles within Emory University, and up to fifteen if the property rested near the transit line.
Avery knew he would “try to avoid” children, which guided his apartment search to hip, urban developments by default. But he didn’t want to live in a concrete complex. “I wanted a view that looked out over a nature scene—something unique and un-urban like to fully separate work from home.” In the end, he opted for a more family-oriented atmosphere further out of town in exchange for greenery and a lake feature on the property.
Neighborhood surrounding Emory University
The sea of options could be overwhelming to first-time renters but knowing your must-haves will turn the tides of possibilities in your favor.
Price Perks. Atlanta’s high vacancy rate means that renters receive more price perks and room for negotiations with landlords. With a plethora of apartments, condos and homes for rent landlords and leasing agents have come up with incentives to draw in renters.
“I saw signs for up to three months free rent.” Avery explains. “You can take it all at once or spread a bit the savings over a longer duration of time. I end up going with that [apartment community]. I got all three months at once so I’d have more money in the beginning for furniture, utilities hook-ups and stuff.”
Other incentives for renters include raffle giveaways, cash to current tenants for referrals, free parking, on-site storage, and discount cards to nearby restaurants and shops. Incentives like these rarely come with a mortgage.
Now it’s your turn. Why did you decide to rent? What incentives and perks have come along with your lease?