(Closed) Apartment hunting tips?

posted 6 years ago in Home
Post # 3
2204 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2011

For me:

Parking (for two cars), laundry, does the building sign for packages (if you looking at managed buildings), safety of surrounding area, what utilities are included, location, noise level.

When looking at properties, I usually do a few drive-bys to see what’s going around them when not being given a formal tour.

Post # 4
1827 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

for me, the most important feature of an apartment is a free storage unit inside the building. we’d be screwed without it!

when we were apartment hunting, we for some reason weren’t too concerned with storage units, but luckily ended up signing with a building that gave us one! woohoo


Post # 5
10366 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2010

1. pull your credit report/score and bring it with you

2. go with your checkbook so you can pay the application fee or deposit on the spot if you love the place (our rental market here is so aggressive that if you aren’t one of the first 3 people in the door, you won’t get it if it is a great place – no time to think about it/go home and get your checkbook!).

3. everything PinkPinstripes said 🙂

It’s about layout, noise, cleanliness, safety, laundry, parking, and price for me!

Post # 6
2580 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

This last time around we moved to a new city on short notice and had to do a whirlwind apartment hunt! There are a lot of things to consider and it’s a good idea to go to several places in different neighborhoods to gauge what you do or don’t like. 

The things we looked for most were safety/neighborhood, convenience to work, value for price, pet-friendly, washer/dryer included, ample parking (for guests, too!), and relatively updated in terms of appliances.

Post # 7
13068 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

Make a list of your (1) absolute must-haves (2) would be nice to have features.  Our must-haves were walk-in closets, a good gym, big kitchen, and washer/dryer in the unit, while a balcony/terrace was on the would be nice to have list. 

Also look into the neighborhood, see how the rental increases work, can you re-sign a lease after a year (mine is automatic month-to-month after the first year with no option for a new lease), parking costs and availability, etc. 

Good luck, and happy hunting!

Post # 8
4464 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: June 2010

Well, I live in NYC, which is a whole different animal, but a couple things that came to mind…

Go by the neighborhood at night if you don’t know it well.  Some neighborhoods look totally different day and night.

Bring a tape measure with you, and have measurements of your couch, bed, dressers, etc.

Open a few cabinets, turn the kitchen lights off and walk away for a couple minutes.  Flick the light back on and look at the cabinets.  That’s a good way to see if a place has roaches.  Maybe that’s just a NYC trick though 😉

Post # 9
387 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: March 2014

Everyone has given you some great advice, I would add check out how maintenance requests are handled (I represented a couple, and at this particular complex if your issue wasn’t addressed within 36 hours your rent was free until it was fixed!) and read online reviews (+ take with a grain of salt).

Also, find out what the early termination clause is and make sure you can stomach it if you guys needed to move for some reason. Happy hunting!

Post # 10
1249 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: January 1992

Before Darling Husband and I got married, the most important things were: walk-in closets, a pool on site, a good location, and a washer/dryer in the apartment.  I shared apartments with my BFF.

When Darling Husband and I got married, the most important thing was location to the Metro (since I worked in downtown at the time) and price.

When we look for a new apartment, which will hopefully be the last one until we buy a house, what is most important is having a washer/dryer and a fridge in the apartment.  We’ve been using a very small fridge and it is really hard!  No freezer means you can’t buy meat on sale and save it for a few weeks.  Also, since we will probably have our first baby in this apartment, we MUST have a washer/dryer.  I cannot cloth diaper if the laundromat is too far away. 

Post # 11
156 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

You got some great advice, and this was mentioned but I wanted to stress how helpful this was to us… look up reviews on any potential apartments on apartmentratings.com. There were a couple of apartments that we looked at on our same street that looked nice but had terrible reviews for various reasons. The apartment we live in is a little older (built in the 70’s) so it doesn’t look quite as pretty as the brand-new ones but the walls and ceilings are concrete and we never hear our neighbors. You might want to call a local police station and ask advice, we have a few officers who live in our complex and one of them gave me this advice.

Some little things to look at that I never thought about until we moved in here are that the kitchen sink is only a single sink and there is only overhead lighting in the dining room and kitchen so we spent a ton of money on lamps when we first moved in!

Post # 12
64 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: January 2014

We live in the desert, so covered parking, building insullation (cooling costs/sound proofing), two bathrooms, 2 bedrooms, a pool, backyard/green space for our dogs.. Location.. No carpet (grosses me out), laundry.

And I wish I had paid more attention to storage! Lol

Post # 13
4325 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: January 1992

If you have pets, ask about a pet deposit, whether it’s refundable, and about pet rent if they charge it. 

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