7 Tips If You Are A First-Time Renter

Exciting things are about to unfold when you decide to move to Los Angeles! Remember though that renting is the best thing to do right since majority of properties are rented than owned

The City of Angels ranks fifth as one of the expensive in the rental real estate in the country and for a reason. There are so many apartment properties right now that are run by really good management that staying may be hotel-like. It's not cheap but if you find the place that fits you, then you are in rental heaven! 

In finance, renting is probably the worst thing you can do for your money. But in most busy cities, renting could be the only option. You have to consider the city and neighborhood you want to settle down in. There's also a situation that may only require you to rent. As for me, given that I don't plan to stay too long in Los Angeles, renting seemed to be a better option for me.

There is just so much to love with Los Angeles. Good news that even with rental prices are slowly on the rise, it is nowhere near what it once was pre-pandemic. Zumper.com, a reliable rental price source says that lowest price as of the moment starts at only $800! The market is currently competitive and quite giving for those who wants to move back to the city now that work is slowly going back to normal!

So don't try to make too much of a checklist of what you want to have in and near your apartment, rather be open to what the universe is giving now that you're in a new city and take these tips to heart!

1. If it's too good to be true...

Then it probably is. LA is not known for cheap rentals. It scores high on the chart even during the pandemic. And especially now that LA opened in June and more companies are requiring people to go back to their work, the rent market may be on the rise. So stave off on checking sketchy websites or else you find yourself dorming with roaches and with a manager who is deaf to your complaints.

2.  DO your research 

Since you're handing out hard-earned cash and peace of mind is priceless, research about the property wouldn't be a bad idea. Call for people you know who live in the area and ask them about the neighborhood. And if you don't know anyone, you can try to join Facebook groups that are related to the area your want to move into. This has been especially helpful for me and any of my friends.

Tip: A space would show its "sickness" during bad weather so you may want to ask previous renters or tenants about the situation on leaks and water or electrical supply during stormy days. You can also ask about the security and overall safety of the area.
You can't have a perfect apartment but you don't have to worry about parking your car at night at the lot. 

3. Forget the AMENITIES.

Amenities are definitely fun and it brings a good work-life balance to one's life. But really, how many times have you used the treadmill or the tennis court from your last place? Besides, COVID-19 has practically rendered these things obsolete, thanks to the much-needed social distancing. SO putting this on the checklist could be reaching for the skies. It's a good thing though that Los Angles offer s a wide array of rental properties that have more or less, some even provide a beautiful view of the Marina and LA skyline!

Also, you are likely to meet a new friend who lives in an apartment complex who has amazing amenities than you have and it will be more fun to work out with someone!

4. Space! Space! Space!

Space is valuable when it comes to leasing. You are paying for every inch so make sure you'll get good use of each of them. Check the layout, and go take that virtual our! Plan your furniture and make sure to not add additional cost just so everything fits in your new rental unit.

I'd like to err on the side of caution that work-from-home will be a constant thing, so if you'll be stuck in a four-wall apartment, it might as well serve all its purpose. 

5. Get your ducks and documents in a row.

If this is your first time renting, there will be a few things you need to get in order to process your lease agreement. Here are the initial documents you'll need for moving. 

  • Identification Card 
  • Favorable credit history
  • Proof of Income 
  • Filled up the rental application form
  • No prior criminal convictions relating to a property
Know that a good character makes you a t op-notch lessee and would be favorable when looking for a good place to live.

7. Read the contract twice and have it looked over by someone who is familiar with legal jargon.

We have experienced friends come to us with the worst drawn-up Contracts of Lease! Sometimes, a beautiful view and spacious apartment could fog up our minds and forget us to read fine lines in our contracts. We forget to dots some i's and cross t's and very much willing to hand out our John Hancock on the dotted line. Please don't. These are the things to watch out for when reading your contract.
  • The terms of deposits on the property. Have it clearly drawn how you the lessor wants the property to look like when the contract ends so you can claim your deposit back when the lease term is up.
  • Check the parameters in which the lessor must return your security deposit.
  • Check the clause that pertains to when the contract of lease is up, you must be informed 60 days prior and be given priority to rent the unit again.
  • Check also the parameters on the increase and must not be done within the time agreed upon in the contract

Now that you have a more reasonable and realistic expectation, it would be easier to find a new place. Since most of transactions are done online and virtually these days, it pays to know the a neighborhood you are moving in and have a gauge of current market price. Los Angeles may be cutthroat when it comes to pricing but each place boast of beautiful advantages that may be worth spending the extra penny.

So, go ahead and start planning and we wish you well on your LA home!

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