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How To Find an Apartment Fast

By: Justin Chaplin
March 21, 2019

If you are following a traditional timeline for an apartment search, you may be planning to spend months looking for an apartment. Your search may begin a few months before your targeted move-in date, and you have plenty of time to research neighborhoods and go to apartment tours.

But what if you’re in a rush? What if your dream job start date is firm, and you have to find an apartment ASAP?

Finding an apartment quickly may sound like a daunting, high-stakes task. Follow these tips for finding an apartment fast to make sure you can quick while still finding the perfect home.

Get all of your documents in order

Make sure you have everything you need to secure an apartment. The apartment application process will require a number of things from you, so be sure to have them ready. If you are moving for a new job, make sure to have the job offer printed out with your salary. Also be sure to bring along pay stubs from your previous employer. You might be asked about references as well, so have the contact information of previous landlords ready to go.

Make a list of potential apartments

You might not have time to view every suitable apartment. Choose a few of your favorites. Make sure they fit within your price range, and you’ve made sure the commute will be acceptable. Also, you should only be looking at apartments that have current availability since you have such a short time frame. If you’re wondering about traffic, open up Google Maps at 8:30am and 5:30pm and plug in your new workplace to the potential apartment’s address. This will give you a good idea of what typical rush hour traffic may look like for you.

Get on the phone

Once you have a list of a few apartments you love, call them and set up appointments. We recommend calling if you have urgency around moving as you’ll likely get in contact with a leasing specialist quicker. To maximize time, try to schedule all of your tours during the same day. If all of the apartment options are open on Saturday and Sunday, make a weekend of it.

Document the tours

Don’t leave everything up to your memory after your tours. Bring a pen and paper and jot down all of the important details of the apartments. Write down the pros, the cons, and the answers to these important questions. Also, don’t forget to bring a checkbook and bring your application documents with you on the tours! If the perfect apartment presents itself and you want to apply after touring, you need to be prepared. When you go home and mull over the options, you don’t want to forget any of the crucial information that’ll guide your decision.

Be willing to compromise

You might not be able to explore every apartment that looks like a good option. You might not be able to explore every neighborhood that a city has to offer. If you can’t find the dream home during this timeframe, be willing to compromise. Remember, you can always move on from that apartment when your lease is up!

The apartment search requires a lot of time and research, so doing it in such a short amount of time might not be the most pleasant experience. However, it moves fast and once you’re all settled in your new home, it’ll all be worth it!

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Justin is a Content Manager and contributing author at Apartment List, helping people navigate the world of renting. Justin previously spent his time earning his BBA in Marketing from Boise State University. Read More
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