Apartment vacancies in the United States have recently soared to all-time highs for recent decades. With younger people leaving cities to move back home with their parents, and others moving to the country to escape crowds of people, many individual landlords as well as large apartment complexes are resorting to multiple months of free rent, lowered monthly rent rates, and extra amenities, many of which were unthinkable just a year or two ago. Here are some of the tactics you might find lately, and how you can score a killer deal if you know where to look.
Many large apartment complexes have often offered a month of free rent to spur people to sign a lease. Current incentives are even more attractive, with some places offering up to two months free to get people to move in. Be sure to check ads on search engines such as Google, where many specific rental promotions are used that are not otherwise displayed on typical apartment rental homepages (to keep from angering current residents).
Lower Monthly Rental Rates
Rental rates are also plummeting nationwide. In large metros such as Los Angeles, rents are down a 11%. Other areas of the country are showing even bigger decreases. Keep an eye on Craigslist and Apartments.com to try to land the best deal. If your lease is currently month-to-month, now is the best time to move and save big on your monthly expenses.
Many progressive minded politicians are attempting to do something to curb excessive luxury construction. Some proposals, like those in Los Angeles, might charge owners and developers to have units sitting vacant. This could mean you can score a deal on a nicer unit than you might otherwise be able to afford.
Rent Controlled Units
Many units which are typically fought bitterly over are now sitting vacant. If you can find one of these rentals, you may be paying some of the cheapest available rates in over a decade on prime real estate. While rent controlled units may lack some of the features such as in-unit washer dryer or central air conditioning, they can offer a certain charm of a time gone by, particularly in many older brick buildings which were formerly boarding houses in the 1910s and 1920s.
Some landlords are quickly using capital which they had reserved for improvements now, in order to keep existing tenants from moving out. This could mean that your landlord might be willing to replace that ratty old carpet with some new floors, or maybe finally fix those flickering lights in the elevator. Ask your landlord if any upgrades or incentives might be available to you so that you don’t start looking elsewhere for a cheaper or nicer apartment.
If you do wind up looking at a new apartment, expect to be required to have adequate facial coverings to view units, and be especially respectful of existing tenants or building residents. Now more people than ever are working from home, which is fast changing the commercial and residential real estate markets. If you know where and how to look, you can score a killer deal on a new place to live.