Renting an apartment for the first time is a daunting prospect. It seems like there’s so much to know, so many boxes to check, and so much to keep track of. It’s easy to feel like you’re behind and you need to play catch up to figure out what’s going on. With everything else you have to learn at this time (learning how the apartment rental process works) can feel like just one more item on a long list of confusing things you’re required to learn when moving to another City.
But there’s no need to worry about this one. S-Home will covere this quick and informative guide to renting your first apartment. We’re collecting all the essential information so you can be armed with information as you begin this process.
No matter how intimidating the apartment search can appear, there’s no other way to begin than just to dive in. The first step in renting an apartment is to simply begin finding rental listings. Make lists, spreadsheets, or whatever works for you as you record apartments that look good to you or that you’ve contacted the owner of.
Browse the Internet for Apartments
When it comes to finding rental listings near you, the internet is your friend. There are several ways to utilize it. You can directly look up property management companies. These companies will usually have all their current available listings shown on their website with floor plans and amenity information.
What to Consider When Renting an Apartment
Of course, no matter how many helpful websites you have access to, it’s impossible to begin your apartment hunt until you decide on a few other considerations, including location, budget, and roommates.
Narrow Down a Location
Of course, no matter how many helpful websites you have access to, it’s impossible to begin your apartment hunt without first knowing where you want to look. Most likely, you’ll want to live relatively close to your job, school, internship, or other meaningful location. However, this can mean something entirely different to everyone. Some people aren’t interested in commuting more than ten minutes to work. Others don’t mind a commute of nearly an hour. It all depends on what works for your lifestyle, your car’s or motobike's gas tank and what the neighborhoods near you look like.
It’s also good to think about proximity to locations other than your job. For example, consider how close the nearest grocery store or shopping mall is. If you have young children, think about what good schools are nearby, and think about what school district would make the best fit for your family.
It may be helpful to think of having three choices of apartment settings. You can live in the city, the suburbs, or the rural country. It doesn’t matter if your job is in the city or the rural country. As long as you’re willing to commute, all three living options are available.
The urban lifestyle tends to be more fast-paced, crowded and expensive, but it also allows you access to the very best in culture and entertainment. The suburban lifestyle is great for raising a family, and still allows you access to the sights of the city and the space to pull back as well. Finally, the rural lifestyle allows a more relaxed pace of living and plenty of space, although you may find yourself missing the constant activity and stimulation of the city. Decide which lifestyle appeals most to you, and begin looking there.
Work out a Budget for your Apartment
Along with a location, a budget is hands-down the most important factor in deciding what apartment you’ll eventually end up renting.
Whether it’s big or small, all of us live on a budget of some sort. Some of us can afford enormous mansions, while others struggle to rent one-bedroom apartments. Whichever camp you fall into, one thing remains the same: You have a limited amount of resources to spend on housing.
Creating a budget isn’t difficult at all, even if you’ve never done it before. First, you start with your monthly income. From this number, you subtract how much you spend on things like groceries, gas, insurance, shopping, entertainment, your Netflix subscription and anything else you can think of. Don’t forget to account for things like any loan payments you may be making any month, as well as savings. The amount you have left is the amount you can afford to spend on housing every month.
You can also create your budget by beginning with your rent first. Do a bit of research to learn what a typical monthly rental rate is for properties of the size you’re looking for in the area you want to live. Subtract this from your monthly income, and see if there’s enough left over to cover the rest of your monthly expenses.
One of the most important things to remember when you create this budget is this: Do not forget to include utilities. Utilities are water, gas, electric, and other amenities. If you’ve never rented before, you might assume these are included in the price of rent. Sometimes they are, but unfortunately, they usually aren’t. In many cases, you’ll find apartments that include a few utilities in the prices of rent, but the others are the renter’s responsibility. Either way, include an extra chunk of money in your budget for utilities just in case.
Make a List of Needs and Wants
Before you begin visiting apartments, make a list for yourself of desirable qualities you hope to find in your future apartment. Then, divide this list into “needs” and “wants.” Your needs list should include things that you absolutely can’t compromise on, like the number of bedrooms, bathrooms, or on-site laundry. Your wants list, on the other hand, could include things like the size of closets or the availability of off-street parking.
Since only you know what’s important to you, it’s important for you to make this list yourself and customize it according to your needs and lifestyle. Having this list readily at hand will help you when you’re searching out apartments. It will help you rule out some options immediately and will help you decide one choice is ultimately better than another. It might even save you from wasting your time on an apartment that will ultimately never suit your needs.
Now that you have a list of apartments picked out, it’s time to start scheduling tours and visits. It’s easy to get overwhelmed during this process, so take some time before each visit to plan out the things you want to look for and the questions you want to ask.
Here are a few steps to guide you through this process:
1. Visit Multiple Apartments
No matter how much you may think you love the first apartment you visit, you owe it to yourself to play the field a little bit. Visit multiple apartments. Get a sense of what options are available to you. The more apartments you visit, the more you’ll be able to compare them to one another and decide which one is truly the best option for you.
2. Be an Active Visitor
Apartment visits and tours are important. Not only are they great for looking at the apartment itself, but they’re also a chance for you to see the apartment and visualize the space needed for your belongings.
3. Ask Questions
This ties neatly into the idea of paying attention to the apartment itself. When you tour an apartment, this is the perfect chance to talk with the landlord or realtor and ask them some important questions.
=> Here’s a quick look at some of the most important questions to ask your potential landlord:
+ Are utilities included in the rent? If not, ask about the process of setting these services up.
+ Are pets allowed?
+ What are the move out policies?
+ What is the school district?
+ When is rent due and what forms of payment are accepted?
So you’ve found the perfect place. You’ve visited it, asked plenty of questions, and determined this is a place you could be happy in. The next step is to sign the lease and make it official.
You might think since this is the last step in the process, this is a time to relax and stop paying attention. But the opposite is actually true. This is the time to pay extra close attention so as not to miss any of the finer, last-minute details that will try to slip by.
Don’t Wait to Apply for an Apartment
Once you’ve found that perfect dream apartment, it can be tempting to go home, take a day, and think about it. After all, you want to be sure you’re making the right decision, right?
Resist the temptation. Don’t wait. If you like the apartment, ask to fill out an application on the spot. The time between filling out the application and hearing back from the landlord will give you plenty of time to think about it and make a decision.
In the time you take to think about it, the apartment will almost always be snatched out from under you by someone else.
Provide your information
When you fill out an application, you will need to make a deposit so that the landlord continues to keep the apartment until you move in and some certain personal information. Since you can find it on the spot of an apartment visit, it's a good idea to bring these documents with you. If they have sensitive documents that you are afraid of losing, write down the information, take photos with your phone or write to memory.
Some examples of documents and information you need to provide include:
* Your passport
* Personal references
Read the Lease
We understand, no one reads the terms and conditions. Every one of us is guilty of blindly clicking the “I Agree” box without even reading a single word of the thousands we’re agreeing to. We do this every day, and no one bats an eye.
Your lease is not like this. Your lease is important. It’s a legally binding contract you are obligated to obey. You need to know what it is you’re agreeing to. Make sure the things you and your landlord talked about are reflected accurately and that strange is in slipped into the lease.
Here are a few important things to look for in the lease. These are all things you should’ve talked about with your landlord, but it’s a good idea to double-check the lease document to make sure it accurately reflects your conversations:
Term of the lease
Price of rent
Responsibility for maintenance
Responsibility for utilities
Rules about pets
Ruled about extended guests
Once you’ve read it, take a deep breath and sign it. Congratulations — you’re now a leaseholder!
Check out S-Home’s Rental Properties
If you’re looking for your first apartment anywhere in the Central Nha Trang area, we hope you’ll check out the many comfortable apartments available to rent from Property Apartments. We have apartments in Nha Trang Center and the surrounding area. We would love to answer any of your questions.
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