In 2018, the average monthly rent in the US was $1,405.
For students and people with part-time income, that’s a good chunk of monthly earnings. Knowing how to save money on rent might help you fit that monthly cost into a tight budget.
If you’re looking for your next rental, knowing where to look and how to negotiate can save you money. And if you’re already living in your rental, there are things you can do to help you manage your rent costs too.
Keep reading to learn more about how to save on rent, whether it’s your first apartment or one you’ve lived in for some time.
1. Choose Your Location Wisely
If you’re just looking for a rental, then know that your location is going to have one of the biggest impacts on how to lower your rent. Being close to amenities and close to your job might be convenient, but if that means being in a high-end neighborhood, you’re not going to save any money.
Instead, consider looking at properties for rent in a place that’s outside of the city center. That might mean that you’re a little further from work and shopping, but as long as you’re close to a bus or subway station, you’ll have no trouble getting around.
2. Get a Roommate
Getting a roommate means more than someone to share the cost of rent with. It also means you can share the costs of utilities, toiletries, and in some cases, groceries.
With a roommate, you can save on rent by splitting the cost evenly and down the middle. Or, to save even more on rent, you might choose to sublet to your roommate.
3. Try Negotiating
You’ll have a hard time negotiating your initial lease. But when it’s time to sign a new one, you’ll have an opportunity to save money on rent.
Landlords might try to ask for higher rent at this time. That’s because the market changes annually and rent prices typically go up and not down.
Keep in mind, though, that your landlord wants to keep good tenants. And having you move out means they have to go through the process of finding someone new. Use that leverage to negotiate a new agreement.
4. Sign a Longer Lease
For some people, being locked into a 1 or 2-year lease is difficult, especially when work is uncertain. But if you can be flexible on these terms and sign a longer lease, you should be able to save some money.
Stability is good for landlords. Having you sign a lease that’s longer than a year guarantees that they have a tenant paying rent for that long.
Talk to your landlord and find out if they offer a monthly discount if you sign a longer lease.
5. Watch Out for Additional Costs
If paying the utilities is part of your lease agreement, then there are ways to save money on those bills.
Consider your energy consumption. If you watch your tv less and always turn your lights off, you can cut those costs from your bills. And if you take it one step further and start turning off passive energy-consuming items like your internet router or your microwave, you can save even more.
How to Save Money on Rent and More
Knowing how to save money on rent can help you create a more manageable monthly budget. It’s as simple as knowing when and how to negotiate with your landlord, finding the right location, and cutting costs where you can. But you might also consider bringing in a roommate to share the costs or sign a longer lease for a monthly discount.
Once you’ve found your perfect place, let’s get decorating. Check out our blog for some great tips on how to make your house feel like home.