Here’s how to save money living in an apartment.
Apartment living isn’t for everyone, but many tenants are seeking ways on how to save money living in an apartment. And for many, living in an apartment is a rite of passage. Here are just a few of the tips you can use when living in an apartment.
Get a Roommate
This is probably the single biggest way you can save money living in apartment. Yes, it requires an additional bedroom, which results in higher rent. But the increase in rent is more than offset by the cost savings of splitting your monthly rental bill with another person. And as a general rule, the more roommates you have, the greater the rent savings. But the drawback of multiple roommates is potential disagreement and conflict.
Negotiate with your Landlord
When your lease is about to end, you will have the decision of whether to renew or move out when the lease is up. It’s almost certain that if you renew your lease, your landlord will charge you a higher rent. If you want to stay in your current apartment but want to avoid the higher rent, you may have the option of negotiating away the rent increase or reducing it. This is because you have some leverage.
For example, if you move out, your landlord has to find another tenant. Cleaning the apartment becomes his or her responsibility. This means the landlord will have to spend extra money. Then, if the demand for apartments is low in your area, your unit will probably remain vacant for a while, which means lost income for your landlord. Therefore, your landlord will have some incentive to keep you around.
The amount of this incentive depends on much demand there is for your apartment. For example, if there is not enough housing in your area, your landlord may actually want you to move out so he or she can charge more to a new tenant than the landlord could charge you.
Use the Apartment’s Amenities
To attract tenants, many apartments offer free or reduced cost amenities, such as a pool, gym or access to recreational facilities. If you were planning on that gym membership in addition to your rental cost and you choose the right apartment, you can just use your apartment’s gym for free and avoid a separate gym membership.
For some, this won’t help save money (although it will help the environment), because the monthly rental cost includes utilities, no matter how much water or electricity you use. But for many apartment complexes, the utility companies will keep track of each apartment’s energy and water usage and charge the tenant accordingly. So to save a few extra dollars each month, turn off the water when brushing your teeth and leave the lights off when away from the apartment.
Consider the Apartment’s Location
Ideally, you want an apartment that’s close to school or work. But for many, that means paying higher rent. One way to save money on rent is to choose an apartment that’s further away from your place of work or education. Depending on where you are, you might be able to save $200 a month for an extra 15 minutes of commuting. For most of you, that trade off will be worth it. For some, it may not be. Everyone’s situation will be different.
Sign a Long-Term Lease
For the most part, the longer the term of the lease, the cheaper the monthly rent. For instance, entering a six-month lease will result in a higher monthly rent payment compared to a 12-month lease. Of course, the trade-off is that if something changes and you have to move far away, you will probably have to continue paying your long-term lease. But if you’re willing or able to take this risk, choosing a longer lease over a shorter one can result in significant monthly savings.
It can take time and practice to learn how to save money living in an apartment. If you need a bit of wiggle room, a title pawn can help. Call or visit your nearest Title Tree store to find out whether you qualify.