A couple weeks ago, I received the awesome news that I got an awesome job, and I get to move to a fantastic new city for that job! I’m so excited for this opportunity and I can’t wait to get my career started. I’ll write more about all that in afuture post.
The first step in moving to a new city is to find a place to live. I’d admittedly already started looking at apartments in the new area before I even received the offer — I guess I wanted to be prepared! My early research paid off, though; once I had the offer, I jumped online to start searching. This way, I knew exactly where I wanted to look when I got to my new city.
Finding a place to live is not always easy. I want to help make that process easier. Here are my tips for finding a new apartment in a brand new city!
Do your research // If you can alleviate any amount of the overwhelm factor, do it and do it as soon as possible. The more familiar you are with the city and its housing market before you even start talking to complexes, the better and easier the whole process will be. Write down names of complexes and neighborhoods that look promising, so you can visit them (or do more research) later.
Establish your price range early // Figure out how much you’re willing to pay for rent each month. More often than not, this is limited by some factor, like your job’s salary. Establishing your price range makes doing your research easier; it helps keep you realistic and focused on the future. Don’t spend time looking at units you can’t afford, and instead look into units within your budget. Don’t brush aside places outside of your price range completely, though! Keep them in mind for the future, in the event you decide to move.
Call the places and make appointments // If they know you’re interested in their apartments, and want to make a special appointment to meet with them, then you’ve got a leg up in the game. This certainly isn’t a “must,” and it’s perfectly okay to drop in without prior planning. But if they know you’re coming, and maybe have an idea of what you’re looking for, it makes finding the right fit much easier and smoother.Moving soon? These are GREAT tips for finding a new apartment that's right for you! Click To Tweet
Visit the city // For me, this is a no-brainer. It’s one thing to see everything online, but seeing it in person gives you a whole new view on the lay of the land, where certain places are located in relation to other places, what the apartment complexes actually look like and more. If you can’t visit the city, reach out to friends or family who may be closer to scope it out, or ask friends who have been there before for their opinions. Leasing agents at the complexes will be able to help, too!
Ask the locals // Don’t be afraid to ask people you see working in stores or restaurants for their advice or insights! My mom and I did this almost everywhere we went. We asked several waiters at restaurants, a couple sales ladies at the local mall, and we even asked the guy who helped us pick furniture at Rooms to Go. More often than not, they’ll know the area and will be able to point you in a good direction. Even better, they may have lived in certain places themselves and can offer first-hand advice on where to look.
Go back to places you REALLY liked // It’s kind of like visiting colleges. If there’s one you really liked the first time, go back, just to make sure it’s as awesome as you thought the first time. You’ll spend lots of time at your new apartment, so enjoying your space and the complex itself is really important to a good experience.
Ask about move-in incentives or benefits // Complexes don’t always offer move-in incentives (reduced application fee, waived pet fee, etc.), but sometimes they do, at different times throughout the year. It never hurts to ask – it may save you some money, immediately or in the long run.
Finding an apartment in a brand new city can be daunting, but you can make it easier on yourself and those who may help you in the process. Starting early and knowing where to look and who to ask can go a long way when looking for the next best place to call home.
Have you moved to a new city lately? What’s your best apartment-hunting advice?