For a lot of people, renting a home is one of the first things they do on their road to independence. Some people even find that renting suits their lifestyle perfectly to the point that they would rather rent on the long term than purchase their own real property.
Renting a home or an apartment might entail less responsibilities than home ownership, but there’s no mistaking that it’s still a huge commitment. A good and responsible tenant pays their rent on time, makes no trouble, and honors the lease agreement they signed. It’s what you’ll want to do if you want to maintain a good relationship with your landlord.
Now that we’ve established that renting is no mere transaction, here’s everything you need to know about renting a house or an apartment for the first time.
The benefits of renting
Here are a couple of reasons why renting a home or an apartment might be a better fit for you, depending on your current lifestyle and financial capabilities:
- It’s cheaper than home ownership. People who buy homes hope that their properties will appreciate over time. But while they wait for that to happen, they will have to incur costs one after another. In addition to upfront costs, homeowners need to set aside money for maintenance, utilities, and other home emergencies.
To some degree, you will still have to shoulder some of these expenses when you rent a home or an apartment. That said, the total cost will most likely be only a fraction of what you might spend as a homeowner. Furthermore, maintenance and repair work will be taken care of by the landlord or the property management company.
- You have tons of options. The rentals market is filled to the brim with a great variety of options. Depending on your needs, lifestyle and budget, you can find just about anything, from a single-family home, an apartment, a townhome, a condo, to a luxury property for rent.
This level of flexibility also applies to location. You can find rentals in downtown neighborhoods or in suburban communities, whichever you prefer.
- You can enjoy amenities. Pools, in-house fitness facilities, and other amenities come with a hefty price tag if you’re buying residential real estate. These luxuries, however, come with hardly a cost if you choose to rent a condo or an apartment.
Of course, amenities and services on offer vary per apartment or condo building. There may also be costs to cover maintenance of these shared spaces, but these will be likely included in the HOA fees. But on the grand scheme of things, renting is a cost-efficient way to enjoy features you wouldn’t otherwise have if you buy a home.
There’s less risk. Home appreciation is subject to market movements. If the market fluctuates, property values might decrease, thereby affecting homeowners severely. Lower property values also have an impact on tenants but to a lesser extent. For instance, you won’t have to worry about the resale value of the home or not making returns on your real estate investment.
You can easily downsize or upgrade your home. As your needs and lifestyle change, you might consider moving to a larger home or a smaller space. You can easily find another rental and move out at the end of your lease. The same can’t be said with homeownership. Selling a home takes time as well as resources. Buying a new home might also be contingent on making that sale.
What you need to know before renting
In order to enjoy all of the perks that come with renting, be sure to keep the following information in mind:
Your credit history can affect your rental application. Landlords and property managers do what they can to screen potential tenants. After all, good tenants make their jobs easier and also stabilize the income stream. They’ll look at your job, your income, public records, as well as your credit history. As much as possible, keep your credit score acceptable just in case you encounter landlords or managers with stricter requirements.
Your monthly rent can change. Landlords and property managers can impose periodic increases, so make sure to read the fine print. That way, you’ll know when it will happen and you can prepare for it accordingly. If you plan on renting in an income-based rental, you might also be subject to income reassessments which can increase or decrease your monthly rent.
Don’t forget to inspect the property. Even if you’re only renting, an inspection is still necessary. It also helps to review HOA rules and fees, if there are any, before you commit to a rental. HOA rules can impact your living arrangements, so know their guidelines beforehand.
Sundance Property Management can help you find the ideal rental in Cincinnati and the surrounding Tri-State area. Get in touch with our team to learn more about residential rental real estate in these areas.