Picking your first apartment may be one of the biggest decisions you’ll make as a young adult. This is why we came up with a few tips to help you navigate this life milestone.
1. Determine your budget.
Before you begin your exciting search for your apartment, you must first determine how much you can afford to pay each month. Rent should account for around 30% of your income every month.
Also, don’t forget to account for possible moving costs such as the following:
- Hiring a professional mover and furniture mover
- Hiring cleaning services
- Installing a home security system (setting up security cameras, hiring a locksmith)
2. Pick your location.
It can be daunting to decide where exactly you want to live. Consider your proximity to work.
The farther you are from your place of work, the higher you have to pay for transportation costs and gas money. So try to balance it out with the cost of rent.
Once you know your preferences and priorities, it will be easier to narrow down the location best for your needs.
3. You might need a co-signer.
If you’re still young and doing this for the first time, you might have little work history and little to no credit. If that’s the case, you might need a parent, guardian, or mentor with good credit to help you out.
Some also ask for references. Good references can help you get the apartment that you want.
You can ask managers and supervisors to vouch for your responsibility and performance. Try to prepare the documents and letters ahead of time so you have all of them ready anytime.
4. Decide if you’re going to need roommates.
After you set your budget, you can then decide whether you want or need roommates. This has its own set of pros and cons.
Having roommates means that you can afford to get a bigger space with better amenities since you get to split the costs. However, this also means you don’t have the place to yourself and will have to learn how to live and coexist with other people in the same space.
This means that you really have to find the roommates that are the right fit for you. Having roommate problems can bring a lot of complications.
5. Check out the neighborhood.
After checking out the apartment, make sure to have enough time to assess the neighborhood during the day and night. Check your proximity to the grocery store, laundromat, restaurants, and other important services.
Research on the safety of the neighborhood. If it’s often described as family-friendly, that’s a green flag.
Picking your first apartment can be intimidating. We hope we were able to help you in your search.
Did we miss out on any more important tips? Let us know in the comments below!
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