Whether it’s your first time or your a pro, each rental experience is different. Our team at Corken + Company offers Real Estate Solutions Without Limits, including offering luxury leasing and property management. Wondering what it takes to rent a home? Check out these tips for renters:
TIP #1: BUDGET WISELY:
Putting together an apartment budget can help you save up for your first apartment. Continuing your budget plans, even after you move in, is a great way to grow your savings for rent, utilities, home décor, and more.
You never want to spend more than you can realistically afford on rent for your first apartment. Spend no more than 30 percent of your gross income on rent. The 50/30/20 rule is another budgeting technique to follow, so you can save for the security deposit or first month’s rent.
TIP #2: DETERMINE YOUR NEEDS:
While scouting for apartments, think about the checklist you made regarding your needs. You did make one, didn’t you? Your apartment needs are very different from your apartment wants. They’re your must-haves, the features that will make you the most comfortable at home.
If you don’t own a car, you’re going to need an apartment within walking distance of public transportation. Pet owners will need to find a pet-friendly community that’s accommodating to their furry friends.
TIP #3: TAKE A WALKING TOUR OF THE APARTMENT:
Online apartment tours have definitely made it simple for renters to view new homes from afar. However, a good old-fashioned walking tour of the apartment can help you experience the neighborhood first-hand. Schedule a tour with an apartment community so you can get a sense of the layout, the community vibe, and how amenities are kept on a daily basis, from the trash collection area to the fitness center.
TIP #4: KNOW WHAT UTILITIES ARE INCLUDED, AND WHICH ONES YOU NEED TO GET YOURSELF:
Some apartments may come with included utilities and others will not. If included utilities are important to you, add it into your search since the cost can affect your budget. Talk with your property manager about the utilities that will be added to each rent payment. Instead of making their tenants open an account with the city for water, some communities bill their tenants directly for water usage, for example. If this is the case, you’ll add on the amount owed to each rent payment, rather than send your payment to the local water department.
First-time renters will likely have to set up new accounts with utility providers – and it can cost you some money upfront. One-time fees and equipment rentals are common when setting up your utilities, such as electricity to your apartment and cable/Internet.
TIP #5: CONSIDER THE PARKING SITUATION FOR YOU AND GUESTS:
Parking can sometimes be a hassle when you live in an urban area. Lots that fill up quickly and lack of space for overnight guests and visitors can be overwhelming without doing any due diligence as a first-time renter. Speak with your property manager about the parking situation at the apartment community.
TIP #6: KNOW WHAT THE APPLICATION PROCESS INVOLVES:
Renting an apartment for the very first time can be confusing. First-time renters generally don’t know all the jargon and rental lingo used in an application as well as how to apply for an apartment.
This “process” is actually pretty simple, generally involving filling out an application, a credit check, and paying a small application fee. The turnaround time for approval is quick. Today, renters can know if they’ve been approved in less than 48 hours – sometimes it can be within minutes!
TIPS #7: READ AND UNDERSTAND THE LEASE:
Initial here, signing there on a lease agreement will give you all the feels: joy, excitement, and maybe even a little nervousness too. It’s your first apartment on your own. But while you may not be able to contain your feelings, don’t ever feel rushed into signing a lease.
Read the contract in its entirety and note the concerns that you see. If you and the property manager had agreed to something during the tour, see that it’s been written into the agreement. If not, they may not be legally required to hold up their end of the deal.
TIP #8: GET RENTERS INSURANCE:
You’re new to this, so let me help you out. You should get renters insurance because it protects your belongings from theft and fire! A renter’s insurance policy includes property coverage, personal liability coverage, and temporary housing if the original dwelling has been deemed uninhabitable. The benefits of renter’s insurance are great – get a policy!
TIP #9: WALK THROUGH THE APARTMENT:
Once you have the apartment keys, your property manager will do a walkthrough with you. This will allow you to look through the home and take note of any issues you see, such as low water pressure or dings in the wall.
After you’ve done the walkthrough, you or your property manager will send the repair list to maintenance and they’ll come out and fix it. If you don’t do the walkthrough and damages are never submitted, you could be responsible for paying for the repairs at the end of your lease with your security deposit!
It is always good to be over prepared when it comes to renting your first place. We hope these tips helped you and if you are looking for quality apartments or condos in the Denver area contact us today!