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A Comprehensive Guide for First-Time Apartment Hunters

Young Woman Apartment Hunting on Her PhoneIf you’re deliberating about renting your first Irving apartment, probably you’re equally excited and nervous. It is rational to feel that way: after all, there are many things you need to consider, from finding the right place to securing that you can afford it and everything in between. Make apartment hunting more manageable by performing some fundamental things in advance. By applying these useful procedures now, you can effectively find and rent your first apartment like a pro in an instant.

Crunch the Numbers

Before you initiate your apartment search, you need to discover how much you can afford. To achieve this, you’ll need to enumerate a monthly budget that displays all of your income and expenses. After that, you can calculate how much rent you can afford. An excellent rule of thumb is to keep your apartment rent at about 30% of your income after taxes. Determine the exact dollar amount. Then check your budget. Do you possess sufficient money left over after your other expenses to cover that balance? If not, you may need to take some extra measures before you’re ready to start apartment hunting.

Look Beyond the Rent

Analyzing the amount of monthly rent you can afford is a good start, but there are other costs involved that should not be disregarded. Usually, you will need to pay a security deposit upfront along with the first month’s rent. The amount of this security deposit will change over time, but it is frequently the same amount as the rental payment.

There may also be other deposits and fees, like credit check fees, utility deposits, and additional costs. Plus, you’ll need to find out if utilities are included in the rent or if you will be responsible for paying for your own. Internet, cable, electricity, gas, water, and trash disposal are all common utilities that you’ll need to have enough money to get set up if they aren’t included in the rent. To make it simple, you need to consider it this way: you’ll need to have at least 2 – 3 months of rental payments saved up to guarantee that you have what you need to get into your first apartment.

Application Basics

Once you’re done dealing with your finances, it is best to start searching and applying for your first apartment. It would be ideal to have your application materials ready before you start so that when you discover a location you prefer, you’re prepared to get that application done quickly. To rent an apartment, you will need a list of documents and information.

Even though this category may change over time, it’s a great thing to have the following available:

  • Your last two pay stubs or a bank statement
  • Social security number
  • Driver’s license or state ID
  • Credit report
  • Contact information for at least two references

Read the Lease

Once you’ve completed the rental process, carefully read through all of your lease documents – including the fine print. A lease is a binding legal contract, meaning that once you sign it, you will be on the hook for whatever is in it. Have a clear understanding of your responsibilities, what your landlord will provide, how things like maintenance and repairs will work, and all that. Besides that, ensure that the rental payment amount, security deposit amount, and other numbers are correct.

Finally, check for any unusual or unexpected rules or clauses to make sure that you are comfortable following the rules stated in the lease. If you have questions about anything you find in your lease, be sure to ask someone you trust. Basically, the more details you get about your apartment, the neighborhood, and your landlord before you rent from them, the more advantage you will have.


Are you looking for your first rental home in Irving? Contact us online today or call us at 817-502-3588.

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