If your rent has gone up significantly several years in a row, you might be questioning if you want to continue renewing your lease, or move on to a new rental unit. Before you decide to make the big move, you might want to find out if your rent increases mirror the rent paid for similar units in your neighborhood.
Finding out what other people pay for rent requires a bit of online sleuthing.
- First, take stock of your rental unit, so you can make certain you’re comparing apples to apples when you start researching other units in the area. Take note of the number of bedrooms and bathrooms in your unit; if you have additional facilities available to you including a pool, exercise room and laundry machines; and what type of parking options you’re paying for currently.
- Then start researching. Look for apartment units available for rent within a square mile radius. Search Craigslist, the newspaper and other websites for listed apartments that match what you have in your unit. The rental price should be listed in the advertisement, giving you a good idea if your rent is keeping up with the going rate or if you may be paying more than average.
- There are also websites that monitor this information as well. For example, www.rentometer.com allows you to plug in your address, what you’re paying and how many bedrooms are in your unit. It then lets you know if your rent is average for the neighborhood, or higher or lower. It also lists neighboring rental addresses, and provides a rent price for those addresses.
Having a good knowledge basis allows you to make an informed decision on whether the rent you’re paying is fair, or if it may be time for you to look for a new apartment.
If you decide to look for new apartment check your rental history report for errors first and give yourself the best chance at the best apartment in your price range.