Moving into your first apartment can be super exciting! You want to bring everything and you definitely want to make sure you don’t forget anything. But, sometimes there is not room for all of your belongings, and a lot of times we forget the simple most important items to bring. Here is a list of the most important items to bring; you can get the rest as you go:
1. Bed. Buy yourself a decent size bed. Get rid of your twin bed or air mattress and treat yourself to a comfortable full or queen-sized bed (depending on the amount of space your bedroom offers).
2. Couch. Using the floor, card table or porch chairs as your living room furniture might seem like an okay idea to start, but they are uncomfortable and they definitely do not give off that homey feel. You can find inexpensive couches at many different home stores, and you will be so happy that you spent the money.
3. TV. Watching shows on your computer is definitely convenient, but do you really want to have to wait that extra couple of days to watch your favorite shows on the internet? If you plan on having guests over, do you really want to all be crowded around your small computer screen?
4. All purpose table and chairs. Eating on the floor is crappy. A table with chairs is a must. If there is not a lot of space in your apartment this table can play many different roles: dining table, desk, or even extra counter space for your kitchen.
5. Curtains. Do you really want to give your neighbors a front row seat to your life? Invest in curtains, they add texture and color to a room, allowing/not allowing light to come in, and give you the privacy you need so you are not your neighbors’ favorite show.
6. Lamps. Lightening in a room is key to setting the mood. Those fluorescent lights from the ceiling may give your room a yellowish tint and you a headache. Lamps are a good way for you to decide how much light you want in a room at any given time.
7. Smoke alarm and CO2 detector. Fires are devastating and CO2 is unhealthy. Your landlord is responsible for providing these, but it is your job to make sure that they are in your apartment.
8. Plates and Silverware. Homes do not use paper plates and plastic ware. They have pretty dishes, and silverware.
9. Cleaning Materials. Make sure you have all the supplies needed to clean up after yourself and disinfect in the kitchen, bathroom, bedroom and living space. And now that you have those plates and silverware, you are going to want to need to clean them.
10. Stackable Storage Containers. Apartments are notorious for not offering a lot of storage space, so it is necessary for you to stay neat and organized. This well help you when finding places for your toiletries, video games, office supplies, bills, etc.
11. Shower Curtains. Water will get all over the floor if you do not have a shower liner and curtains make your bathroom homey.
12. Microwave. Sure you are excited to make some home-cooked meals, but lets be serious…sometimes you will need to make something on the run or you will just be to lazy too slow cook that roast.
There are more people than just you in the apartment hunting market, so you’re definitely going to have competition when it comes to getting approved for the perfect apartment. There are different steps you can take in order to be the one that your landlord picks to move in.
One of the first steps a landlord will take is conducting a credit report, so it is very important that you know your credit score. If you have excellent credit you can tell your landlord, and he will definitely be happy to hear that; he will still conduct the report but having a good credit score is one step closer to getting approved for your perfect apartment. If for some reason you do not have good or excellent credit, you can tell your landlord about this in advance, and then explain why you may not have the best credit. This way when the landlord goes to do the report, he won’t be in for any surprises.
Just like you need a resume when you apply for a job, it is a great idea to have a renting resume when applying for an apartment. On your resume you should include any past rental history to show that you have experienced paying rent before, and give your landlord a reference to contact. If this is your first apartment, you can put on there if you have fulfilled any leases, paid a friend to stay on the couch, or even paid your parents a little to stay at home.
When applying for an apartment you need more money than just enough to cover rent. There are other fees that will need to be paid even before you can call the apartment home. It is a good idea to make sure you have enough cash to pay for everything in the application process: application fees, deposit, credit check, pet deposit, parking permit, broker’s fees, and maybe even last month’s rent. Another tip dealing with money is to make sure you rent within your budget. You don’t want to go see apartments that you would be struggling to make ends meet and possibly not be able to afford your bills. Getting evicted from an apartment will definitely become a roadblock when trying to rent again.
Some minor steps you can take, that may seem like common sense are, to dress-to-impress. When you go to inspect at the apartment the landlord is “inspecting” you as well. Make sure you dress appropriately and professionally. This will give the landlord a great first impression of you. Do not be late. Landlords have a lot to do and may have more showings and appointments to make, so do not keep your landlord waiting make sure you are there about 5-10 minutes before your actually appointment time.
Make sure you are prepared for everything that comes with the apartment hunting process. The landlord does not have a lot of time to get-to-know you, so this first impression is going to be huge.