Renting an apartment isn’t just a solution for those just starting out on their own anymore. Many people are still choosing to rent apartments even if they can already qualify for a mortgage and afford to buy a home. This is due to the significant savings and perks that come with renting an apartment that you wouldn’t normally get when purchasing your own residential property.
Apartments are also often located in urban or suburban areas, close to public transportation, shopping centers, restaurants, and entertainment options. This can lead to shorter commutes and easy access to various services and activities.
Let’s take a look at some more advantages of renting an apartment:
1. Community & Security
Living in an apartment complex can create a sense of community, as you are surrounded by neighbors in close proximity. Crime is still rising in metropolitan areas, and the cost of security systems is a luxury many cannot afford on top of a monthly mortgage.
Many apartment complexes have security features such as gated entrances, security cameras, and on-site staff, providing an added sense of safety. Added to that is the vast amount of neighbors that have your back.
2. Lower Utility Costs
While some people will complain apartments are too small, they require less electricity and water to keep up which in turn reduces the utility bills significantly. Some complexes also include utilities like cable and Internet in their rent fees.
In addition to their smaller size and shared walls, most modern-day apartments are also more energy-efficient due to smart technology, resulting in lower utility bills compared to larger detached homes.
3. Amenities & Services
Many apartment complexes offer shared amenities such as swimming pools, fitness centers, communal gardens, and common areas. This again reduces monthly costs otherwise spent on monthly or annual memberships. In addition, these facilities can enhance your living experience and provide opportunities to socialize with neighbors.
Some apartments also offer additional services like package delivery, on-site maintenance, and trash pickup, making day-to-day living more convenient.
4. Free Maintenance
Home owners are required to make repairs needed to their home. As a renter, you are typically not responsible for major maintenance and repairs, which can save both time and money. Apartment complexes handle this for you. Landlords or property management companies typically take care of maintenance issues, such as plumbing problems, roofing repairs, and appliance malfunctions.
On top of free maintenance, some complexes also provide free pest control. Depending on the type of home, maintenance fees can become costly, especially if there is year-round maintenance such as septic draining.
5. No Property Taxes & Mortgage Payments
Homeowners get sacked each year with property taxes. Renting an apartment means your name is not on the deed and you are not required to pay the taxes that come with the unit. While some mortgage payments may seem lower than the cost or renting, the actual cost over time is much more. Add to that the interest accrued on loans.
In addition, renters typically don’t have to worry about homeowner’s insurance or maintenance costs. Additionally, the initial upfront costs for renting, such as security deposits, are often lower than the down payment required for buying a home.
Today, the ability to be flexible has never been more crucial. You have to go where the work is, and owning a home limits your ability to work to a specific area. Even if a company will pay to relocate you, they do not cover nearly half the actual cost of what it would take to sell a pre-existing home or purchase a new one. Renting allows you to be where you want to be.
Renting provides more flexibility, making it suitable for those who expect to move frequently due to job changes or other reasons. It is generally easier to terminate a lease and relocate than to sell a home and purchase a new one.
Apartment Search Tools to Check Out
In the good ole’ days, it used to be that you had to look at listings in the back of a newspaper or drive around searching for signs just like the one above to find a good apartment. If you wanted to move a great distance, this complicated matters as you had to investigate properties sight unseen.
This is no longer the case, as the Internet has great search tools specifically designed for apartment seekers. We recommend you check out these three best apartment search tools for finding the perfect one for you.
How does PadMapper make finding the perfect apartment or house easier for you? Simple. Pop in your needs, wants, budget and other concerns for a place. Tadaaaahhh! PadMapper will give you a list of places in the given areas you specify, just like that. You can then further streamline things by adding listings to your Favorites or hiding the unappealing ones from the map. This makes finding a new home or apartment as easy as a few clicks of your mouse.
Rentable is a really great tool that offers a lot of different options. Once you do narrow down places, you can go right to Google street view and have a walk around your prospective neighborhood. You can look up all sorts of things in the area. Where as rental data is a common offering of sites like this, Rentable also offers users the ability to look up nearby social scenes and local businesses.
HotPads is an interesting apartment search portal because it also offers you something called “heat maps”. Heatmaps have the ability to overlap searches by certain criteria. So, say you’re looking for a nice little 4-bedroom unit that allows dogs and cats, but there are certain things you want and don’t want—you can add that in. You can also put in data like median age, rent, foreclosure data, household income, or population density. Your customized search overlays your existing location search to come up with a clearer picture of your prospective neighborhoods.
Any given apartment search you run, there’s a good chance you can use Google Maps Street view to take a virtual walk around the neighborhood, rather than driving all the way there. You can have full listings of any apartments or homes in the neighborhoods you want, and maybe even find that neighborhoods you didn’t think would be ideal actually are.
The Bottom Line
While renting an apartment may seem like throwing money away because you don’t get to own it at the end of the term, the money saved often outweighs that drawback significantly. Apartments can be the best option for those not wanting to be weighed down by high living costs and mortgages.
Renting an apartment also gives you the freedom to change direction in your life by not tying you down to one place. Even if owning a home may be an aspiration at some point, renting an apartment will allow you to save in order to reach your goal of owning a home in the future.