Renting an apartment requires you to consider a lot of factors. One of the first things to remember is that the rental market doesn’t always stay the same.
Whether you are looking for two bedroom apartments, studio apartments, or a decent one bedroom apartment, a little market analysis is always a good idea. Make sure to avoid signing leases until you have done your homework about the best and worst months to rent an apartment.
Worst Month to Rent an Apartment
Are you ready to start searching for your new apartment? If you plan on moving within the U.S., you should check out similar seasonal trends in order to get a better deal.
It Depends On Your Preferences
Perhaps you have been wondering about the best and worst months for renting an apartment. The answer really depends on what you are looking for.
Most apartment hunters’ first and foremost consideration is the rent expectation. That alone would make August, June, and July the worst months to rent an apartment.
The Time Factor and Rent Rates
Most kids enjoy their holidays during the summer months (usually June, July, and August). College students are also at liberty during this time.
Before making any decisions, consider how long it takes to move apartments. No matter how little you have to move, it is still better to do these things in the daytime.
A Lot of Competition
The insights of people moving during the warmer months will tell you just how much demand there is for housing at this time.
With many people touring apartments and snapping up whatever they can find, homeowners and agents will go beyond the original asking price. They might get offers to match or even exceed their demands.
Is it a Priority?
If your priority is not a low rental rate, but ease of moving, July won’t be such a bad time to start an apartment search.
With the moving rates being so high, there should be quite a few units vacant at this point.
It Might Also Be Costly
Do remember that renting in July or the summer months, in general, can cost you over $100 per month more than a winter month rental.
Low Rent in Winters
The winter months, however, will give you lower rental rates since the landlords are trying to fill up their leftover spaces.
While you may be getting a better deal, you also have less choice during these months.
Start Looking Around
The factors that determine the worst months for renting an apartment will also point you towards the best month to look for an apartment.
How to Make an Apartment Search Easier During Summer
There are many reasons why July to September is the only period when you could go hunting for an apartment. There are similar seasonal trends in the rental market throughout most areas of the U.S.
Why Go for the Summer Months?
Here is a glance at a few situations that might prompt you to go for the summer months.
It Depends On Your Current Situation
Overall, your apartment hunting period might have to be during this time due to the following:
Studying in College
You are a college student who needs off-campus housing for the coming fall semester.
You Want to Begin Your Career
You have just graduated college and now need a place to stay while working at your job or finding one to begin with.
You Have School Going Kids
You do not want your kids to transfer schools mid-session due to your moving time.
It Can Be Challenging
So, what do you do when faced with the heavy competition for renting apartments during summer? The rush alone could make June and July the worst months for moving.
How to Make the Transition Easier
There are some tips that might make some steps easier:
1. Prepare Yourself
If you see a decent one bedroom apartment or any other likely apartment style properties, it is wise to lock it down right away.
Finalize Your Decision Immediately
During the summer, you can’t expect a rental to be available even the next day. Therefore, when you go for a tour, you should agree on the final rental price immediately.
Check out the resale market and try to find out the rates for similar properties rented in the same area.
Take Advantage of the Early Summer
If it is still early summer, you can have a lot of choices. So, do your research. This practice just might help you match your potential landlord’s negotiation leverage.
2. Get Your Documentation Together
Renting an apartment requires you to present certain documentation to the landlord. This includes your proof of income, proof of identity, credit history, recent tax returns, and any reference contacts.
Get all these documents ready and in a file well ahead of time. This might help you secure even those elusive two bedroom apartments in the early summer!
3. Secure the Required Money
When conducting a market analysis, you should consider several financial aspects of renting an apartment. This means considering the security deposit and other demands, besides the original asking price.
Learn the Right Way to Search for Apartments
Once you know how to shop for apartments, it might become easier to handle a landlord’s negotiation leverage, even during the worst months for renting.
One of the first steps here is to have the security deposit ready before even starting an apartment search.
Why it’s Important
During the summer, you probably won’t get a few weeks to gather the deposit, and then come back to rent a decent apartment.
4. Planning the Apartment Search
If you intentionally plan out your apartment hunting, you might be able to reduce how much leverage landlords have over certain apartments.
How to Improve Your Overall Experience
While it might be a busy time of the year for renting, here is what any potential tenant can do to improve their experience:
Exclude Weekends from the Schedule
Do not book tours on the weekend; this is when almost everyone is able to go out for an apartment hunt – remember, regular employees are also off during that time
Try to utilize your lunch break, take a short leave in the middle of the week, or do something else to meet landlords when there are off-peak hours
Analyze Your Preferences
Know what you want, but don’t over-complicate it; have a few deal breakers in place and know what to insist upon
Do Not Rush (if possible)
Rushing unnecessarily is not the best way forward; you do not want to end up paying a premium price for a mediocre apartment
Consider the factor of hiring a moving company as well; these will be in high demand when it is warmer and the prices then will also increase accordingly
When is it Wise to Wait?
Overall, if you are planning to find a new apartment during early summer, you may want to consider waiting a little.
It Can Be Tricky
June is usually an expensive time to begin a new rental lease, especially when it comes to the largest housing markets in the country.
Some Helpful Tips
Consider the following observations before putting off or speeding up your search:
Know About the Peak Pricing
Certain regions might have peak pricing for rentals at different points during the year
Wait for Winter if You Want Discounts
If you want to save money, then you should wait for winter (this is when potential landlords might offer discounts due to less traffic on their listings)
The Intensity of the Weather Matters
The lower rent rates will depend upon whether the winter is harsh or not; the number and quality of spaces left is also an important matter to account for
Consider Multi-Year Leases
Consider making a concession to get a better deal — you can agree to multi-year leases from the very beginning (if you plan to stay in the same region for longer)
How Multi-Year Leases Can Be Beneficial for You
With leases for a multiple number of years (with the signature), you will not be subject to major rent hikes in the future – learn when your landlord can increase rent here
Overall, we might say that there are no categorical best or worst months to find apartments for rent. Instead of thinking in terms of rent alone, consider the advantages you get in choosing summer or winter months. The weather during these months do determine how much leverage landlords get, but it can occasionally work in your favor.
Make sure to know just what you want from your new apartment or apartment-style properties. Along with the final rental price, you have to consider the start of the school year, choices in the properties rented, the resale market, moving flexibility, and so on. Do a thorough market analysis of what these data points provide and avoid signing leases unless you are absolutely sure of getting a reasonable deal.
Is this your first time looking for a space to rent? Be sure to look up what to know for first-time apartment renters!