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Stuff Nobody Tells You About Getting An Apartment

There is some good info in here. A good read for anyone getting ready to look for their first apartment.

 

STUFF NOBODY TELLS YOU ABOUT GETTING AN APARTMENT

This’ll cover the basics, such as financial expectation, rental history, what to bring for the application process, etc.

This information is based on renting in an apartment owned/managed by a commercial property owner in the USA. That being said, much of this can be applied to any first-time renter.

FIRST PLACE?: Don’t sweat it. What’s likely is you’ll have a higher deposit, or need lots of references, or have a longer lease. You may have to deal with being rejected because they assume with you being young that you’re not mature, or that you tend to party. This is a stereotype that, unfortunately, you can’t really fight. Keep looking, don’t give up. Come prepared with reference letters from employers, non-family friends you’ve known at least a year, volunteer mentors. This will make you look awesome.

If you can get out on your own without any hitches, you should do it. If you’re in the process of getting booted out by family because they don’t want to support you anymore, or you’ve had enough and are deciding to save up the smallest amount possible to get out fast (see “how much should I save?”), as long as you follow the rest of the steps below, all should be well.

Sometimes (not always; just sometimes) when you live in an area where the rent is just not in your price range at all and you don’t want to move away from a place you know, it helps to have a friend who’s been apartment renting a while and becoming roommates. You essentially ride in on their rental history and in doing so, you build up some cred yourself. Plus, then you have not only your future manager’s reference, but a personal/roommate reference. Everyone should have a couple roommates in their life, so they can figure out how to co-habitate. Family doesn’t count, and be careful housing with close friends because it might test your friendship. You might be saying “Oh, no! We’re best friends! If I can’t live with my best friend—” but trust me: long-term friendships have ended because of roommate situations. After doing this, then you can live completely on your own. Keep in mind with regard to moving in with someone who is already in an apartment: you need to be put on the lease. Some properties have very strict rules regarding this — it’s called subletting, and it can put you in major trouble down the line.

If you don’t have a credit card, consider getting one. Buy little things on credit you know you can afford; pay them off within the first two weeks of purchasing them. What this does is increase your credit score, which looks good on your background check. Do this early and often, and you’ll look awesome. Don’t trust credit cards? Check if your bank will let you take out a personal loan. Make it smallish, ranging $350-$500. Go on a mini-vacation, or buy yourself a video game console, or a couple new outfits that are in fashion. Pay it back monthly in double the minimum payment, and pay on time. Having credit is essential if you want an apartment. Also, having this little cache of… cash… will help you with your moving costs.

Read the rest here.

 

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