If you’re starting college this year — either as a first-time student in a new city or an experienced student who wants to move off-campus this year — it’s important to start the search for your student rentals early. You aren’t the only one searching for off-campus housing; chances are that the demand is high. According to a study conducted by the Rental Protection Agency, roughly 2,654 people enter the U.S. market looking for rentals every day, with many of them searching for affordable housing. A good portion of those people are students. To help you in your search, we’ve put together a quick checklist guide of four tips to help you get started with finding your perfect student rentals.
Choose the Location of Your Student Rentals Wisely
As a student, you want to choose your location wisely. You should be sure you are close enough to campus that you have no difficulty making it to class on time. This is especially true if you don’t have a car and are relying on public transportation or walking and biking to get to and from campus. If you are taking public transportation, make sure these hubs are near enough to your apartment that they’re a viable option. Even if you are planning to drive, you need to make sure that you can make it through traffic with time to spare. Because you are living off-campus, you also need to make sure that it is near enough to necessary amenities such as the grocery store or laundry services. As any student will tell you, you don’t want to add any stress to your day once you get started with due dates, projects, and tests during the school year.
Set Your Budget and Find a Roommate
It’s important to know your budget while you are looking. It’s also important to have roommates lined up if you are going to have them. Knowing what all of you will be able to pay per month will help you narrow your search and allow you to find your apartment much more quickly. While you are looking, you should also be aware of hidden fees like the cost of utilities including energy bills, internet, water, cable, and trash, as well as additional fees like parking and laundry services. Additionally, if the apartments your are viewing aren’t furnished, be aware of the possible cost of furnishing them yourself.
Take the Time to Visit Prospective Student Rentals and View Multiple Options
No matter how perfect an apartment looks online, always take the time to view it in person before you make any sort of commitment. You want to make sure that it really is what you thought and that the neighborhood and surrounding areas are safe. You’ll always want to view multiple options before deciding on one. No matter how amazing you think the first apartment you view is, there’s always the chance that you could find a better one for less money that’s closer to campus or that has the amenities you want.
Ask Questions and Always Read the Lease Agreement
You should always as your potential landlord questions before you agree to anything. You should ask things like:
- What is included in the rent and what additional fees will I be responsible for?
- Has the apartment been cleaned?
- How safe is the neighborhood?
- Are pets allowed?
Likewise, read the entire lease agreement and understand what you will be signing if you get the apartment. It’s important to understand the fees and liabilities you will adhere to, the end date of your lease, and the penalties should you break it. And remember, don’t be afraid to ask the landlord additional questions specifically about the lease if you are unclear about any point.
Beginning the search to finding the perfect student rental can seem daunting. But hopefully, this quick guide has made it seem a bit easier. Contact your local real estate acquisition company to help you in your search. If you are near Newark, Delaware, you can contact the Lang Development Group to help you find affordable student housing options near your campus. Start your next school year off right by finding an apartment early and avoiding the last-minute housing rush.