Finding an apartment in D.C. can be daunting. It is the fifth most expensive rental market in the country, and new developments are popping up every day. These five tips are a great place to get started. After all, finding an apartment should be exciting, especially in a city like D.C. that is well worth the price!
Keep the Metro System in Mind
On most occasions, proximity to a Metro station will the key factor in pricing and availability of apartments. For anyone searching who is new to the city, be sure to familiarize yourself with the Metro map and figure out which lines you need to be walking distance to. If you’re not relying on the Metro for commuting or regular use, that will open up a huge number of options.
Find a Few Friends
D.C. is a city with a lot of young professionals and transplants. The effect on apartment hunting is that there are a lot of single, young renters who also tend to move relatively often. If you are comfortable having roommates, sometimes even random ones, that is usually a good bet. Try asking around too; friends may be able to connect you to locals who need to fill a room and who have already vetted a neighborhood.
Be Ready to Sign a Lease
Because of the competitive market, solid housing can go away quickly. Don’t risk losing a place because you don’t have all of your ducks in a row. Once you find an apartment that works for you, be ready to lock it up quickly. Having a good credit score at the ready can make a landlord more likely to accept your application quickly.
Keep Safety In Mind
D.C., like many major cities across the county, has seen a boom in development in the last ten years. One result is that historically dangerous neighborhoods are becoming havens for new rentals. Most of these areas have in fact become safer, but be sure to do your research. A good tip is to walk the neighborhood at night before signing the lease to make sure you feel comfortable.
Search for New Developments
New apartment buildings are going up like crazy throughout D.C. It’s common for these new developments to have lease-up specials that help developers fill up quickly. You have a chance of getting lucky and finding a lease at below market value if you reach out to these properties before they open, or immediately after. Don’t be shy about asking for discounts either.
The housing market in D.C. is plentiful with great rental option, and with these tips you should be well on your way to finding the right fit for you!
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