Planning your apartment search
Regardless of whether you are moving out of state for a new job, pursuing a degree at a college or university, or just in need of a fresh start, it makes sense to take a week or longer to visit the location you plan on moving to. Getting the feel and vibe of your potential home in-person is a great way to start the apartment search process! If you are lucky enough to have a corporation relocation package, typically you are provided with temporary housing. Many others are likely to benefit by some inexpensive, temporary accommodation where it’s possible.
Location and transportation
When looking for a new apartment, it’s a good idea to try and find a home near your employer or school. Reducing a commute can save time for more important things like getting your child to basketball camp or attending a PTA meeting. Public transit is another thing you may consider if traffic is unbearable. Using city transportation will help to alleviate traffic on the roads and day-to-day commute stress. Our Plan Commute tool on Apartments.com lets apartment hunters discover available rental properties within a preferred commute time and mode of transportation.
Your employer’s HR department or university housing may be able to shed some light and guidance on where to live in your city. Check with someone there for the inside scoop on popular neighborhoods to live and nearby amenities.
Be aware of the local market
Keep track of your target city’s supply and demand for rental housing, as that can be dependent on your rates! Cities like Boston and New York have red-hot markets; when you see something good available, you must jump on it immediately or risk missing out. In cities with gradual economies, like Tampa, renters can take a more relaxed approach to apartment hunting.
When visiting potential landlords, analyze your interaction with them and look for red flags. If they show interest in renting you the apartment, that’s a step in the right direction. But if they seem irritable and impatient, it’s probably best to move on.
Before choosing to visit any potential apartments, make certain that you can comfortably afford the payments. Include utility costs and transportation expenses into the calculation, as well.
Many (if not most) landlords and property managers are very interested in your credit score ratings. When you have good credit, the world is your oyster. Hope is not lost if you have less-than-stellar credit. You might just be required to follow some additional rules when applying for an apartment:
1. Be honest with the landlord/property manager about your credit situation.
2. Offering to pay a larger security deposit may help you to close the deal.
3. Agreeing to automatic payments might make the landlord comfortable in renting to you with a less-than-stellar credit score.
Because pulling a credit report can have some negative impact on your credit score, bring the most recent copy with you to avoid a pull from all your prospective communities.
Apartments.com app and website allows prospective renters to view and located copious rental properties all over the U.S., and help to filter down the list to your must-haves in a home. Polygon, our map-based search tool, allows you to expand your search over multiple zip codes so you can find your ideal apartment, condominium, house or townhome for rent.