One of the biggest bucket list aims for most people is the ability to purchase their own home. The thing is, buying a first home is often a few years out of reach while deposits are saved up and plans are made. The next best thing to buying your own home is moving out of mom and dad’s and renting instead. Sure, it can feel like throwing money away for someone else’s mortgage. What you have to remember is that renting a home before buying one is a way to understand what type of home you are looking for and how you can get it.
Most people hear the words ‘rental property’ and envision something of a rundown old apartment that isn’t well looked after. Either that, or they hear those words and think of scary landlords who don’t allow privacy for their tenants. The reality is the most rental properties are run by landlords who are just making ends meet themselves and all they want is a good tenant who will keep their owned home clean and tidy.
The rental market is often quite cutthroat, with more people than there are available properties. This means you have to market yourself as the model tenant and have more to offer than others. It’s this that will make the difference as to whether you end up stuck in a four-floor walk-up in a crowded street compared to a luxury complex like Crystal Lake, where there are on site facilities and even swimming pools available. Rental homes get snapped up very quickly by hungry tenants looking for the best deal for their money and if you don’t get in there quickly, you could lose out.
Working out your rental budget is going to be the first step you need to make, as there is absolutely no point in looking at properties that are far out of your budget and unattainable. You want to look for the absolute best that you can afford and you want to be able to ensure you have enough left over at the end of each month. If you can do that, you can really do well when it comes to making tenancy applications. You have to give yourself enough time to search for a property as well as have enough time to put in an offer and all the while you do this, you have to have the cash readily available to hand over. It sounds like a lot of work, but usually renting a property is extremely straightforward. References are taken from current landlords and your employers, and you are able to then move forward and offer a deposit.
Getting the most for money as a renter includes negotiating a lower rent, a furnished apartment if it is available and even sometimes asking about whether any utilities are included in the rent. It’s important that you understand that you can often secure a tenancy simply by offering a few months of rent up front, which will give you an edge over other renters.