The first thing you should do is decide how much rent you can comfortably afford. A good way to determine the maximum amount of rent you should pay each month is divide your monthly income by three. You should earn at least three times the rent. For example, you shouldn’t pay more than $700.00 a month, if you earn $2,100.00 a month ($2,100.00/3=$700.00). Many landlords ask potential tenants to show they earn three times the rent when they complete their rental application. If you find a place you want to rent, but don’t make three times the rent, consider negotiating other options with the landlord. For example, you could agree to pay a larger security deposit.
After you decide on the amount of rent you feel comfortable paying, you should decide where you want to live. When you think about where you want to live there are a few things you should consider. First, you should consider the type of neighborhood you want to live in. Do you want to live in a quiet rural community, or do you prefer the hustle and bustle of urban living? You should also consider how far away from your job you want to live. Are you willing to make a long commute, or would you prefer to live as close to your job as possible?
If you have children I recommend researching the local public and private school systems. Many places have some system of judging schools. Schools are generally given grades or a point value based on a number of factors. This information can generally be found online at websites run by the local school boards, or on different commercial websites. For example, public schools in Jacksonville, Florida, are part of the Duval County school system. Schools in the Duval County school system are given grades online at http://www.duvalschools.org/domain/5682.
One of the most important things you should consider when deciding where you want to live is how safe the neighborhood is. The best way to do this is by researching the crime statistics in that area. Generally, this information can be found on state agency websites, or local law enforcement websites. For example, the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office has a neighborhood mapping program with statistical crime data, which can be found at http://www.coj.net/departments/sheriffs-office/crime-statistics.aspx.
Now that you have a general idea of where you want to live, make a list of the amenities you want, and the amenities you need. Focus on what you need first. Do you run a business and need an office, or do you have pets and need a backyard? Once you decide on the amenities you need, think about the amenities you want. Do you want a full-size washer and dryer in unit? Or maybe you want a porch to read on. Once you know what you want, and what you need, you can limit and focus your search for the right place to rent.
The last thing you should do before you look for places to rent is compile some information you will need for the rental application. Obtain proof of your employment and income, because the landlord will want to make sure you make enough money to afford the rent. Have some references ready. This includes personal references, professional references, and even landlord references. You may also be asked for your rental history, so be prepared to list the names, addresses, and contact information for your last few places you’ve lived. Be prepared to pay a few application fees. The landlord or their management company will use this money to pay for background and credit checks. If you don’t have the money to pay multiple application fees, let the landlord know up front, and see if they will waive or reduce the fee for you.
If you follow the instructions above, looking for the perfect place to rent will be less time-consuming. You will have a better idea of what you are looking for, and won’t waste time researching properties that aren’t perfect for you.
If you have questions, or are interested in buying, selling, or renting property in Jacksonville, Florida in the surrounding ares, please feel free to contact me by visiting my website at http://www.buysalerentjax.com. I am also a professional property manager.
By Cequaria MorganShare on Facebook