You can find around 48.5 million rental units in the U.S., according to a 2015 survey.
With this many rental units available, you surely can find a unit that you can afford.
If one of your goals this year is to find a more affordable place to live, you should start by learning how to save money on rent.
You can save money on your rental expenses if you know how to, and here are 11 tips that may help you achieve this goal.
- Find a Smaller Unit
One of the simplest ways to cut your rent expense each month is by moving to a smaller apartment rental. Larger units always cost more than smaller units.
If you currently have a one-bedroom unit, you can significantly cut your expenses by moving to an efficiency apartment. The monthly costs for an efficiency unit are more affordable than the costs for one or two-bedroom units.
- Compare the Costs of Units by Location
Next, you should compare the costs by location. Apartment rentals in large cities cost more on average than rentals in rural areas.
If you want to see the differences in costs by location, compare a few units. Contact a few property management firms in different areas, or look up the classified ads in different places.
By doing this, you will see the cost differences by location.
- Get a Roommate to Share the Costs With You
A lot of people save money on rent by getting a roommate. Living with someone else might not be your goal or dream life, but it will make a significant difference in your monthly expenses.
When you share a unit with a person, you each pay for half of the expenses. This one move will instantly cut your costs in half. The only downside is that you’ll have to share your unit with another person.
- Find a Unit That Includes All the Utilities
Another idea is to look for a rental unit that includes all the utilities. If your current apartment does not include utilities, you might be paying for gas, electric, cable, and the Internet in addition to your rental payment.
If you want lower bills, find a unit that includes these things. While you might not find a unit that provides every utility, many apartments now include free Internet and cable TV services.
- Negotiate the Rent
If you want to save on rent, you could consider negotiating the amount you pay with the landlord. The best way to find a landlord that will negotiate is to find a landlord that is having trouble filling his or her apartments.
When landlords cannot keep their units occupied, they lose money. If you can find a landlord like this, he or she may agree to accept a lower amount for rent just to have some money coming in each month.
- Skip the Parking Space
You can also save money on rent by skipping the parking space. A lot of apartment managers charge extra for a parking space. When an apartment building has limited parking, the landlord will charge for the spaces.
You can save money by not choosing a parking space. If you have a car, get rid of it and start using public transportation. Making this one change could help you save even more money.
- Pay More Upfront
Another good trick to consider is paying more money upfront. While this may seem counterproductive, it works well in many cases.
If you offer to pay for six months’ rent upfront, the landlord might agree to reduce your monthly rental amount.
You will need more money to make this happen, but you’d save money in the long run.
- Sign a Longer Lease
You can also negotiate with your landlord by offering to sign a longer lease. If you agree to sign a two-year lease, the landlord might agree to reduce the monthly rent.
Before you use this tip, make sure you plan to stay in the unit for a longer time frame. Otherwise, you might end up paying more in all if you move out early.
- Offer Work in Exchange for Rent
Some landlords are willing to let their tenants perform services around the buildings in exchange for rent. If you have a skill that you can use around the apartment complex, you could use this tip.
For example, do you love painting? If so, you could offer to paint units when tenants move out to reduce your monthly rent. Do you love cleaning? If so, you could offer cleaning services when tenants move out of their units.
- Cut Your Bills and Expenses
In addition to finding ways to cut your monthly rent, you should also consider finding ways to cut other bills and expenses.
For example, could you live with cable TV for a while? If so, canceling it will help you save money every month. Go through your bills and see if you can cut any of them, as this will make a difference in your budget.
- Rent a Room
One last tip to consider is finding a room to rent instead of a whole apartment. You can browse available room rentals in your area to see your options.
Renting a room is the most affordable option you have with paying rent. You will pay less because you receive less space.
If you are trying to save money to buy a house, eventually, this is an ideal way to go.
Learn More About How to Save Money on Rent
There is no reason to pay too much for rent when you can cut your rent expenses by following these tips.
Would you like to learn more about how to save money on rent? If so, check out our blog. We have a lot of great articles that can help you learn how to pay less for rent and other expenses you may currently have.