Good News: The Best Time Of Year To Rent An Apartment Is Almost Here
So you’re finally ready to make the move to a new apartment. Congrats! Whether you’re leaving your parents with an empty nest or putting that promotion income to good use for your own place, be smart about timing. Depending on your location and personal situation, there might actually be a best time for you to rent an apartment and save a few bucks.
The Best Time To Rent An Apartment
Zillow’s director of economic research Aaron Terrazas told Curbed that, historically, rents tend to bottom out — or be the lowest of the year — in late winter or early spring. So, if you’re looking to move, February and March might offer the best prices of the year.
Now, it could suck to apartment search and pack in the dead of winter when there’s snow, holidays and new goals to meet at work. However, according to Curbed, apartments tend to linger on the market a little longer during the winter season, though the number of options might be limited. This will at least give you a little more time to figure out what will work best for your situation.
Timing Isn’t Everything
Although trying to time the market could save you a little on rent every month, it’s not everything. It’s important to consider the cost of everything else that goes into your move, too.
For instance, the late winter and early spring months are also income tax season. If you know you’ll get a decent amount of money back on your income tax return, then it could be smart to wait for that check to clear. Those funds could help you pay for the lease application, your new security deposit and a moving truck.
Another thing to think about is what you might be leaving behind. If you want to move but are locked into an apartment lease that doesn’t end for three months, you could end up paying a hefty fee to break it. Is it really worth it?
Pro Tip: After your first year in an apartment, consider asking your landlord or management company if you can pay on a month-by-month basis. This allows you more flexibility in an apartment that you don’t consider your life-long residence.
And don’t forget about getting your current security deposit back. Look around the place and start fixing anything that could end up costing you money. Patch any holes in walls where you hung frames with nails, tighten any loose cabinets or doorknobs, clean the refrigerator, oven and microwave really well, etc. Do whatever you have to do to put the place back in its original state when you moved in.
Pro Tip: Consult the photos you hopefully took when you first moved in. These will remind you of what was there before you occupied the space. It’s important that your landlord doesn’t blame you for a loose baseboard that was there when you originally moved in.
Whatever you do, make sure you’re renting an apartment that’s best for you and your lifestyle. A new job in a new city might mean you need to get up and go ASAP, which could cause you to lose money on your current place. But if that new job also comes with a great pay bump, it could be worth it in the long run. By watching the rental market in your area, you’ll make smarter moves in finding your next home.
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