Whether you’re scouting for a new rental to move together with your partner or just for yourself, it’s a milestone for your quest towards independence. Apartment hunting can be exciting, however, don’t be too distracted and prepare for the more important factors—hidden and unexpected costs that come with renting.
There’s no doubt that moving is expensive. If you couldn’t commit yet to buying your own house due to financial constraints, do know that apartment renting isn’t cheap as well.
If you’re still looking, or already found the right apartment you wish to live in, here are a few unforeseen expenses to prepare for before you close the deal.
Application and Admin fees. Application fees cover the administrative costs of conducting background checks and credit check, a necessary process for potential renters. Bear in mind that this costs around $25 to $75 when you apply and that it’s nonrefundable—even if you’re denied.
So, carefully examine which apartments are on your list and narrow it down to three, those of which you’ll submit your application, this will save you a lot of application costs in return.
Security deposits. Some states have laws regarding how much a landlord should charge for security deposits which usually takes one month advance and one month deposit. This can be a heavy burden if you’re left unprepared so be sure to save up as much.
Also, don’t keep your hopes up for reclaiming the security deposit—that you can skip the last month’s rent because of it—that deposit is meant for covering any damages to the property. For future knowledge, keep the unit as nice as possible.
Moving fees. This shouldn’t worry you if you have a lot of things to move and have a lot of friends or family members to help you with the process and logistics. However, for those who has more than a pick-up worth of things to move, you might need to rent a truck and hire movers to help you with it.
Renter’s insurance. Not all renters carry this and that’s a major no-no when you’re a tenant. Renter’s insurance is a necessity and an essential one that will save your back when you find your residence under fire, hit by a calamity or other natural disasters. It can affect anyone at any time. If you’re not insured, you’ll have nothing to protect you and cover for your finances.
The insurance costs at $15 at most per month. If you think about it, it’s not much but saves you big time come unexpected disasters. It’s an extra expense worth taking to protect you from an even heavier burden.
Increased rent. This is unexpected and can come at times you can least afford to. Landlords have the right to increase the rent; it could be annual, every two years, or every time you sign a new lease.
Sure, they will give you a heads up beforehand but if you’re caught in a bad financial situation as it’s way above your fixed expenses, it can cause a great deal of stress on you.
Pet fees. Not all apartments allow pets in their residences so when you find one, it’s simply amazing. However, be prepared for additional charges as some apartments may require such as nonrefundable pet fee, pet rent (your rent will be significantly higher than those who do not own pets), and the likes.
Home improvement and repairs. This isn’t that much an issue since homeowners themselves conduct home improvement and repairs. But for renters, your huge investment in transforming a boring, old apartment into something you envision, only to leave unexpectedly in a few months or years time can be a bummer.
Make a checklist of expenses you need to save for as well as an emergency fund to cover unexpected costs. Renting can be a financial roller coaster ride so it’s better to prepare for the worst.
Any other tips and pieces of advice about apartment renting you’d like our readers to be aware of? Comment below and share it with us!
About the author: Chie Suarez is a writer for Wincrest Homes, a company that builds modern family homes in Sydney, the Central Coast, Newcastle, and Hunter Regions. Chie has a deep interest in home design and decoration.
April 17, 2017