If you’re renting your very first apartment, congratulations! This is an exciting time and hopefully you are excited – if maybe a little nervous – about having your own place. Here at RENTCafe, we’re eager to help you along the path to successful rental process. Take advantage of our expertise and have more peace of mind before you move.
Here are some of the most important reminders we’d offer to any first time renter.
- Make sure you extend a wide net during your apartment search. Don’t just rent the first place that you find. Take a look at all the great apartment listings offered nationally on RENTCafe and you’ll get a sense of how many options there are for your new place. Check out the high-quality photos, view floor plans, and get pricing information. See something you like? You can even go ahead and start your lease process online.
- Assess your monthly budget and have a realistic outlook on what you can pay for your new apartment. Make sure that you have adequate income to easily cover your first month’s rent, deposit, and meet monthly rental obligations thereafter. Keep in mind that the recommended percentage of monthly income that’s spent on housing is 30 percent – but also be realistic. In many parts of the country, it’s not possible to meet that target.
- Before signing your lease, read carefully and make sure you are familiar with all of the terms and obligations you’ll be committing to. Find out about penalties for late rental payments, note the end date of your lease, and check out any eviction policies. If there are terms on the document that you don’t understand, consult an experienced renter or legal professional.
- Set yourself up for a positive rental experience by establishing positive relationships with your property staff and neighbors the first week you move in. Introduce yourself, be friendly, and get ready for a great new life in your new place!