How to Prepare for Apartment Hunting

How to Prepare for Apartment Hunting

We move around a lot because of my husband’s work. You can say that we’re “experts” when it comes to finding the perfect house for our family and turning it into “our” home. So, I’m sharing with you some tips on apartment hunting so you, too, can find the home fit for your needs.

Apartment hunting can be a fun way to live out your own House Hunters dreams, but poor planning can leave you with a lousy apartment or one that you have to break the lease of immediately. So instead, planning is vital.  Take the time to consider each of the following and how they’ll affect your living situation.

You can always move again down the line, but why put yourself through that trouble?

Figure Out Your Budget

How much can you afford per month?  Although many publications cite that your rent should be no more than a third of your monthly income, many financial institutions are now saying it shouldn’t be more than a quarter of your monthly payment. So check to see how much you can afford while still paying all of your bills, putting some money into savings, and having some spare spending money.  If this makes your budget look too tight, it’s time to be slightly more severe with what you can afford.

Decide Your Space Needs

Are you a growing family that needs more room, or are you a single person attempting to downsize?  Either way, space matters.  Consider how many rooms you need, how much square footage you need, and whether or not you need outdoor space.  Unfortunately, this isn’t a part of apartment hunting that many can afford to be flexible about, and it has the power to affect how much your monthly rent will be severe.

Correct Your Credit Score

If you go into renting an apartment with a bad credit score, you’ll either have to pay a larger deposit, or you’ll have to find a cosigner who’s willing to put their faith in you.  If either of these is the case, it’s going to be harder to find a space. So instead, take the time to build your credit score.  Pay off any old debts, work on using a credit card wisely, ensure that all payments you make are early or on time, and cover slightly more than the minimum amount needed.

Ensure You Want to Rent and Not Buy

Renting may sound more accessible, but you should take the time to think about whether or not you’d instead buy a home.  Buying is cheaper in some areas than renting is, and it allows you to be in charge of your property and invest instead of throwing the money away.  Many may find this idea scary, but buying is quickly becoming the better option.  Take the time to look at how much home you can afford, and think about where you’d like to be in ten or fifteen years.  

Narrow Down Neighborhoods.

Although looking at Calgary homes for sale as a whole is fun: it’s not applicable if you’re looking at places that you don’t want to have to commute from every day.  Instead, narrow your options down to two or three neighborhoods that make the commute easier for you.  If you take public transit, you must ensure these apartments are on the train or bus lines for easier access.

Kimberley Reyes

Kimberley Reyes is an Online Business Manager for entrepreneurs who are ready to get off the hamster wheel and step into their CEO shoes. On top of helping her clients get organized and scale their businesses, she is also happily busy raising her four kids with her firefighter husband.

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