Moving is always stressful, but getting your first apartment is an equally exciting experience. It marks a very important milestone in your life of leaving the nest and declaring your independence. However, when you move into your apartment for the first time, there are certain things you should know that can make the experience smoother overall.
1. Know Your Budget
You must determine and set your budget for the new apartment. Whether you are renting or buying, this is a must so that you can ensure that you have enough money set aside each month to pay rent or a maintenance fee. Additionally, you have to take into consideration your utilities, electricity, Internet, and other amenities if the building or landlord doesn’t cover them. Generally, these expenses should not be greater than 28 to 35 percent of your monthly salary. Of course, you will also want to be able to buy furniture and household items if you aren’t moving into a place that’s already furnished. Finally, make sure you budget for the actual moving costs. Movers note that most apartment moves take a few hours to complete. Most movers charge between $80-$120/hour depending on where you live, so you can anticipate spending between $300-$600 for your relocation.
2. Know the Building Rules
It’s imperative to know the building’s rules. For instance, some apartment buildings don’t allow dogs or certain breeds of them. There may also be a specific time frame when you can move so as not to disturb the tenants. Speak to the landlord and get the lay of the land regarding building rules so that your move can be an easy one.
3. Know Your Lease
Your lease is a legal document that lays out the terms of living at your new apartment. Essentially, it’s a contract that also tells you how long you are signing to stay in the dwelling. A lease tells you whether only your rent or rent and utilities are your responsibility. It mentions late fees and where and to whom you pay the rent. The lease also mentions whether a security deposit is required for you to pay and whether it can be returned to you.
It’s also wise to be completely clear about what entails breaking the lease and what rules exist for doing so. You should know upfront if there is a cost just in case this happens. Leases can be made for one year or even less, such as six or nine months if you aren’t planning on living at the apartment long term.
4. Choose Your Amenities
Many apartments include a variety of amenities for their tenants. Be wise about choosing yours and only opt for those you need. For example, if you already have a gym membership through your workplace, you should skip one through your apartment. However, if you prefer to do your laundry on the premises instead of at a nearby laundromat, you should sign up for this amenity.
These are all important things to know when you are moving into your first apartment. All these tips will help you to be more prepared and can help you to transition into your new living situation faster in a way that is pleasant and relaxing.