When you’re shopping for a rental, one of the biggest factors at play is your budget. Ideally, you would have calculated what you can afford based on your income before you started hunting. However, one thing many renters don’t realize is that leases are often negotiable. You just have to ask. That ounce of wiggle room in your budget could be enough to land you the coveted office, apartment, or house you thought you couldn’t afford. The key to making this work out in your favor is to master a few great lease negotiation tactics.
Can You Negotiate Your Rent?
Believe it or not, you actually can negotiate your rent. This is something lots of people don’t realize. Landlords lose money when their properties aren’t rented, so keep this in mind while you’re hunting — especially if you’ve noticed a particular location in the listings for a while. However, it’s worth noting that lease negotiation tactics are more successful when you’re renting from an individual owner rather than a large apartment complex.
Top 5 Lease Negotiation Tips
Here are some great lease negotiation tips for getting cheaper rent.
1. Be polite and friendly.
Don’t approach the conversation with an antagonistic attitude — no matter how ready you are to look like a master negotiator. Tell the property owner something along the lines of, “I really love the apartment, but it’s a little out of my price range. Would you be open to negotiating the rent?”
2. Be specific.
Have a dollar amount in mind for your monthly rent. Or, perhaps you want to fight for a change in the lease terms, such as skipping out on the pet deposit or other fees and stipulations.
3. Be flexible.
This may sound contradictory to the point above, but it’s not. If you’re asking a potential landlord to do you a favor, you should be willing to help them out as well. Some things you can do to make yourself more attractive to a landlord include committing to a longer lease or prepaying rent for a month or two.
4. Have good reasons.
Clearly explain to your landlord why he or she should charge you lower rent. Could the apartment use some work? Is the monthly rent more expensive than the market price? Do you have amazing references? Give them a good reason to want to incentivize you to rent from them.
5. Have a Plan B.
As with any negotiation, it may not work out in your favor in the end. If you can still afford the rent and a discount was just going to be a bonus, go for it! And if you can’t afford it without a discount, keep browsing. When you’re shopping above your price range, it’s important to avoid putting all your eggs in one basket.
Bonus tip: Keep in mind that the time of year you move also plays a part in how successful your lease negotiation will be. For example, August is a popular move-in time due to fall semesters starting, so your chances of scoring lower rent probably aren’t great. However, winter can be pretty quiet for movers and landlords, so you may be able to get a better deal during that time.
Is it Moving Time Yet?
Congratulations on negotiating your rent! While it can be a little intimidating to start a negotiation, it feels awesome to end up with what you fought for. If you’re moving into a new rental, contact Ameritex Movers today. Our team is happy to help you get moved in and set up in a flash. Fill out the form above for a free moving quote today.