Finding affordable housing is not always easy, especially in big cities like Chicago, Los Angeles, New York City, and Philadelphia. But, even when the search for affordable apartments seems daunting, there are some things you can do to make it easier. Experts from our apartments for rent in Simpsonville, SC, recommend these tips for finding affordable living accommodations.
Whether buying or renting, it is always easier to locate affordable housing options in less popular neighborhoods, so be ready to do your research. You should immediately cross the hottest neighborhoods like the Village in Manhattan and the Mission in San Francisco off the affordable housing list. Instead, try more reasonably priced areas like the outer boroughs of New York or Fresno. This goes for any state and location. If you are looking in the most famous neighborhood in the city, chances are the prices will be astronomical. Think about suburbs instead, where you will get a little more bang for your buck. You can also save massive amounts of money if you are willing to relocate entirely. Across America, the South and Midwest are the cheapest areas to call home. If you are courageous, you can follow modern-day urban pioneers to economically depressed places like Detroit.
Creating a detailed budget will help you determine how much you can spend on housing. It can also assist with educated decisions like what you need to cut back on to accommodate high housing costs. Experts recommend dividing your monthly income after taxes into percentages according to what you plan to spend. Be sure to account for all expenses, including deposits to retirement accounts or savings, student loan payments, utilities, transportation, and food. It is reasonable to spend 25 to 35% of your income on housing. Housing is deemed 'affordable' by the US government if it costs less than 30% of your income after taxes. If you spend much more than that, it can be challenging to have any fun, save money, or afford other necessities. Avoid any apartments that are outside of your affordable budget. There is some room to be flexible, though. For example, if you live close to your job, you may be able to handle higher housing costs due to lower transportation costs.
Using your networking skills can often lead to better deals than you ever imagined. Let family, coworkers, neighbors, and friends know you are on the search for a new place. Maybe one of them knows a landlord who hasn't put up their new listing yet or has an opening in their apartment building. Word of mouth can often save you extra expenses like brokerage fees. Put your friends and family to work for you, and you may be able to score a better deal than you ever imagined.