If you’ve lived in your apartment for 9 or 10 months, then chances are good your renewal letter is in the mail. It can be tough to decide whether or not you’re ready to move, but we have outlined important steps to help you decide.
• Check to make sure your increase is in-line with average rent raises. A fair range for nationwide rent would be a 3-5% increase from the previous year.
• If you think the new rental price is too high, try to negotiate a fair price with your management company or landlord. It’s usually more expensive for them when you leave, due to painting and cleaning the apartment, and then finding a new resident.
• Add up all of your monthly utilities and extra costs to learn how much you’re really spending every month. Most people set a rental budget without considering extra costs, like parking and pet fees, which can add up over time.
• Consider the perceived values of your apartment. Do you actually use the movie theater and outdoor pool? If you’re paying for fancy amenities that you never ended up using, consider looking for a new apartment building or neighborhood.
• Weigh the things that you love about your apartment against the things you wish were different.
• Track your average commute to work. Is it convenient or could it be easier? Many people (especially when relocating) first choose to be closer to their extracurricular activities and then end up moving closer to work.
• If you’ve made a career change or taken a promotion, check to make sure your rental rate is in-sync with your monthly income. If you’re not sure how much to budget, try our rent calculator.
• Budget out all the costs of moving or hiring movers.
• Look at similar options in your city to see if you’re getting a good deal.
Luxury Living Chicago would be happy to help Chicagoans discuss their search, the newest rental inventory in downtown Chicago, and schedule an appointment to tour potential homes.
Exploring the option of buying instead of renting? Luxury Living Chicago can guide you through the buying process. Our First Time Homebuyer Guide can help you decide if you are ready for the next step.
*This post was originally published on May 10, 2016. We have updated this post to reflect the most current information.