Relocating to a new area can be overwhelming and you may be left with several questions-as you should! How do you know if you are asking the right questions? We have put together a basic checklist to help make sure you are in route to a smooth relocation experience!
Know What You Need and What You are Comfortable With
Are you looking for a single-family home? Are you opposed to a duplex situation? Would you like to live in an apartment? Do you have pets? These are questions you will be asked when inquiring about available rental properties. Knowing the type of housing you will be most comfortable with and what accommodations you need will affect your list of contending properties.
Know Your Budget
You may experience a change in wages vs. cost of living when moving to a new area. Most property management companies have income guidelines to ensure that rent is affordable. At KPM, we require that the monthly rent does not exceed 40% of the total monthly income.
Consider Your Commute
It never hurts to get an understanding of where the local shops and grocery stores are in a new area. Is convenience important to you? If so, you may want to check rental availability near these places, as well as your work, schools, and other hot spots you may frequent. Another thing to consider when thinking of your daily commute is the climate. For example, if you live in a warm environment where you can walk or bike, but are moving to an area that gets snowfall, you may have to consider an alternate form of transportation.
Do Your Research
If you are unfamiliar with the area you are moving to, it may not hurt to find out the criminal activity statistics in that area. We recommend using City Data. Enter the city and state information into the required fields and it will show you the criminal activity around that specific location. This is also a good time to research the different property management companies in the area to get an idea of what different companies require in their application process, what kind of properties they have available, their rental rates, etc.
Read Your Future Lease Agreement
Once you have done your research and established what kind of housing you need, you will hopefully be at the point of choosing a rental property perfect for you. It is crucial that you read and understand your future rental contract so you can feel confident in what you are agreeing to. After all, a lease is a legal binding document that will hold you accountable for everything in it once signed. You should be able to obtain a copy of a standard/sample lease from the landlord before making any commitments. We attach our sample lease to the application so that there are no surprises.
Overall, you can never ask too many questions when relocating to a new area. You want to make sure you are comfortable and get the best out of your rental experience. Doing thorough research, understanding what you need, establishing a budget (and sticking to it), and exploring all your options should help make your relocation go smoothly. Happy house hunting!