Moving into your first apartment is essentially a move in the right direction into adulthood. However, it is also a move that requires a lot of planning, work, and money. To ensure that you are prepared to make this move, you will want to ensure that you have a solid understanding of what to expect. Here are a few things you should take into consideration before renting your first apartment.
When you are renting an apartment for the first time, you may not realize all of costs that you will need to pay upfront. Rent is not the only thing that must be paid initially. In addition to the first and last month's rent, you will also have to pay an application fee, a security deposit, and possibly even a pet deposit. Therefore, it is important to budget for these costs before planning to rent.
Apart from upfront costs, you also must ensure that you are ready to tackle the regular costs of renting. Aside from your monthly financial obligation of rent, there are other regular, long-term costs that you must be ready to handle. For instance, based on your individual needs and living conditions, you will need to pay for electricity, gas, cable and internet, water and trash, cell phone service, gas, groceries, and clothing. You will likely be out several hundred dollars for these expenses, so it is important to budget for this to determine how much rent you can afford each month.
Preparation for Paperwork
Aside from budgeting for your very first apartment, you should also make sure that you are prepared for the application process by gathering all of the paperwork that you will need. This can help speed up the process. Generally, you will need to have the paperwork to verify your identify, employment, and finances. Therefore, you should have your photo ID, pay stubs, and bank statements with you so that the property manager or landlord can make copies.
Since this is your first apartment rental, it may also be the first time you are reviewing an official legal document. Therefore, it may be hard for you to understand. As a result, it is important that you take your time and ready the lease document carefully. You may even want to do some research on commonly used lease terms.
If you don't understand something in the lease document, don't hesitate to ask about it prior to signing it. If you do not agree with something in the lease, discuss it with the landlord of property manager. There is nothing wrong with requesting changes to the lease. However, you should be ready not to win each discussion.
For more information on apartments for rent, reach out to a Realtor in your area.