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Rentals are on a roll

Rent.com tell us what to know before signing our new lease.

Girl moving into her  rental. Credit: Thinkstock/ Wavebreak Media Girl moving into her rental.
Credit: Thinkstock/ Wavebreak Media

Renting? You aren’t alone. Niccole Schreck, senior brand manager at Rent.com says there are a few reasons more and more people are choosing to rent. The first revolves around recent college graduates. “Young people coming out of college are strapped with crippling debt, which makes it harder for them to purchase homes than it was four generations ago,” says Schreck.

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Another reason is that some people simply enjoy the flexibility that comes with renting. “It allows them to have the ‘American Dream’ without needing a home to achieve it,” she says, explaining, “you can move more easily across the country if you want to for a job opportunity.”

People are also drawn to apartment rentals because of amenities — which many couldn’t afford in a home. These include a pool, tennis court or a basketball court and home theater. Not to mention the simple pleasure of not being burdened with raking leaves or lifting heavy shovels packed with snow.

3 Tips
Looking to move? Follow these tips from Nicole Schreck to ensure a smoother process:

Investigate
“The best tip I could give is to do your research. This means knowing what the average rental rates in your area are.”

Keep it real
When you are looking be realistic in your expectations says Schreck. Meaning don’t waste your time and looking at pricy lofts or a swanky neighbor when you can afford something more humble.

Be Overly Prepared
“I relocated to San Francisco recently, which is a really tough rental market. The best way to handle it is to have everything a landlord could possibly request with you,” advises Schreck. This includes: your credit report, your pay check stub, a copy of your rental insurance, and being ready to sign a lease on the spot. “That way if you’re in an area of high competition and you find a place you love, you can make it yours before anyone has a chance to.”

Stats
What’s Trending?
29 percent of property managers had more renters renew leases or request longer leases.
“I see this as a trend emerging because it is becoming so difficult to find rentals, so landlords are making it harder for you to secure an apartment,” Schreck says. “Most people would rather just lock down the apartment they are already in and not bother with the hassle of finding a new apartment.”

Numbers to note
85 percent of property managers reported raising rental rates over the past year.
62 percent expect to increase them again next year.
For 55 percent of property managers, your income to rent ratio is the most important thing to them when considering you as a tenant.
Property managers also saw an increase in number of millennials renting.

 
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