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Mistakes to look out for as an American first-time apartment renter

May 10, 2017 (STLRealEstate.News) Millennials are pouring out of higher educational institutions today looking for apartment rental options. Passionate about not returning home to live with mom and dad, even though millennials are living home longer than any other generation, the average college grad today is sifting the expensive apartment waters – and they’re choppy. Finding an apartment after college is a big undertaking; it can be hard to know where to start when looking through a stack of listings and comparing it to the lackluster income from an entry-level position.

In order to avoid falling victim to some of the common traps when first looking for an apartment, check out these pointers provided by Realtor.com:

1. Preparation
Contrary to most things in life, realtors actually recommend starting the apartment search only 3 to 4-weeks prior to move-in. By starting the search months in advance, the likelihood of finding a dream apartment and losing it to another tenant with an earlier move-in date increases.

2. Underestimating costs
The safest bet here is to always overestimate what the costs are going to be at the end of the month. It’s best to factor in rent, utilities, transportation, travel fees, food, and other predictable expenses. When you get to a total, inflate it to know what your possible ceiling could be when crosschecked with your income.

3. Only considering rent
To continue the previous point’s topic, there are many more expenses that go into living in an apartment than simply rent. If your paycheck is just barely covering your rent, let alone unforeseen expenses, you may want to consider a living space more complementary to your income.

4. Credit check
Unfortunately, most landlords require either a credit check on yourself or on your parents if they are your guarantors. It’s best to start the conversation with your parents now about what kind of credit they have.

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