Whether you’re relocating for work, family or the promise of new adventures, we know that moving to a new city and finding a place to live can be a challenge. Never fear; a big move doesn’t have to be stressful. Our apartment-hunting tips will make finding a location and a home you’re happy with a breeze.
- Act Like a Local: Of course, you want to go sightseeing and learn about the fun parts of your new city (we would, too), but make sure you also take time to experience neighborhoods the way you would if you lived there. Go to local grocery stores, visit the neighborhood gyms, look up crime rates in the area, and tour the local schools if you have kids who will attend one day.
- Talk to Locals: Don’t know anyone in your new area? Email your friends to find out if they know someone whom you can talk to that lives there. Don’t be shy; people love to give their opinions and talking to locals will give you a more realistic sense of what’s good, bad and ugly about your new area. You can also get helpful advice on traffic patterns, apartment-hunting tips and strategies that are specific to the local market, new developments that could change the neighborhood, and other issues that may have an impact on where you choose to move.
- Pros and Cons: Before you begin your apartment search, we recommend making a list of what you like and don’t like about your current area and living situation. As you search for a new place, take notes about what stands out to you and match that against the list of things you want in an apartment and neighborhood. Considering a multitude of factors regarding your new potential home helps you look at the big picture so you don’t end up making a rash decision about where to move.
- Bring the Right Supplies: With a local move, you can go back to an apartment if you want to take a second look or need to check on something you forgot about. However, with a long-distance relocation you may only have one shot to gather all the information you need so come prepared. When you visit your new area, pack a renter’s kit with a measuring tape, camera, notebook and measurements of your largest pieces of furniture. Also, pack your “must-have” list and any notes, advice or apartment-hunting tips you’ve gathered from locals so you don’t forget anything.
If you’re currently planning to relocate, or just mulling it over as a “someday” option, we hope these tips will be helpful. What are your best apartment hunting tips?