Apartment hunting in any city can be a formidable task, but when you are searching for one out of state, it presents a whole new set of challenges. No matter your reason for the move, we found a few tips that can help make you go a little smoother.
IF POSSIBLE, VISIT YOUR NEW STATE AHEAD OF TIME
If your schedule permits, it’s advised to visit your new city ahead of time. Getting a feel and the vibe of your new city and potential apartment in-person is the best way to start your search. If you are fortunate and have a company relocation package, they may provide you with temporary housing while you’re visiting. If not, visiting your new city will afford you the opportunity to visit different areas in relation to your new job or school.
RESEARCH, RESEARCH, RESEARCH
Today, information is readily available via the internet. Most reputable apartment communities have websites that offer images of their grounds and apartments, along with amenities and special features. And with Google Maps, you can research the area to get a feel for local features, hangouts, shopping, neighborhood groceries and other points of interest.
SEEK LOCAL HELP
Many times, the university or your HR department can shed light on relocation. Check with these sources first, usually, someone there will have the inside scoop on popular neighborhoods and nearby amenities. Consider reaching out to the leasing agents at apartment communities. Often, they can share distance to the school or business that brings you to the city and possible benefits or hindrances of their location. It’s their job to stay informed on the area, so be sure to ask questions.
SEEK OUT VIRTUAL TOURS
Most apartment communities are going to share their best images on their website. But the more tech-savvy apartment communities are jumping on board with 3D touring. This technology gives a more accurate depiction of your new living arrangements and is considered the next best thing to a live tour.
BE AWARE OF THE LOCAL MARKET
While we all like to shop around to find the best bang for our buck, keep in mind the rental market of your new city. College and large cities often have a high demand for temporary housing arrangements. The earlier you start looking, the better, and if you find something you like, you need to act quickly or could end up missing out.
FOCUS ON LOCATION
Finding an apartment near your employer or school would be great and relieve you of the stress associated with learning your new city's layout. But occasionally, where you are employed or go to school may be in high demand area and out of budget. If this turns out to be the case, look for alternatives that are close to public transit or near the interstate just outside of your desired area.
BE READY WITH A SECURITY DEPOSIT
If you are relocating for work, your deadline may be out of your control. Make sure you have a security deposit ready when you start looking. While you are at it, have your references and bank statements available as well. It would be very disappointing to miss an opportunity for a lack of preparation.
For students and fist time renters, take time to understand the full cost of renting. Most apartment managers can share the average utility bill for a 1-bedroom apartment. But you need to factor in groceries, transportation, internet/cable and possibly renters insurance. Be sure that the apartment you are considering works well within your budget. Also, keep in mind that your credit score plays a role in your approval to rent. If you have not established credit, now is a good time to do so. If your credit score is low, consider taking steps to improve your score. Most local banks can help you understand the steps you need to take to establish or clean up your credit.
HONESTY REALLY IS THE BEST POLICY
If you are honest with the property manager about your credit situation, you might find they have a little wiggle room or discretion in this matter and can offer solutions to help you secure your first apartment.
Apartment hunting can be stressful, especially when you are out of town or state. Our friendly property managers are here to help If you are looking for apartments for rent in Lafayette,LA be sure to stop by Lafayette Gardens Apartments to take a tour or call to schedule your virtual tour.
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