REAL ESTATE RENTING
Ask For What You Want
Your future landlord isn’t going to offer an awesome deal right off the bat — not if they’re in the business of making money, any way — so if you want to save dough on your rent or other upfront expenses, you have to ask for it. As your mom used to say, “The worst they can say is ‘no.’”
Remember, everything's negotiable.
Moving into a new apartment and need to mind your budget? There are a few tactics you can employ to score a better deal on your new digs. Consider these tips on how to negotiate your rental or lease agreement to walk away a winner:
Come Prepared to Get the Best Deal
You’ll impress your future landlord — and let them know you’re serious about the property — by coming to the meeting dressed professionally and prepared with all the documents necessary to expedite the agreement.
“I tell all my clients to have all their paperwork at the ready, meaning credit report, application, letter of recommendation, bio, income, bank statements, and tax return,” explains Kimberly Tucci, an agent with Realty Group International. “Since demand is high and supply is low, they need to be prepared and strike when the iron’s hot.”
Consider an Extended Lease Agreement
Most leases are for a one-year term, but if you don’t have any plans to relocate in the immediate future, perhaps you should consider a two-year agreement with the landlord if they’re open to the idea.
“Landlords may give you a break if you commit to an extended lease,” Larsen suggests. “If you offer to take a two-year lease, for example, the guarantee that the apartment won’t sit vacant is appealing. If you’re renewing a lease, your track record as a good tenant can be a bargaining tool for landlords who don’t want to risk losing you or pay the cost of sourcing a new tenant if they’re paying a broker’s fee.”
Know Your Worth as a Tenant
Don’t sell yourself short as a renter. If you’re responsible, professional, quiet, and clean, use those characteristics as selling points when you start negotiations.
“From the landlord’s perspective, a bad tenant can cost much more than some lost rent,” Stern says. “Emphasize your positives that always pay rent timely, you have stable employment, you’ve never had past issues with other landlords, etc. Our current landlord gave us a below market price because she knew she could trust us.”
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