Updated: Feb 16
My grandma always used to say "we are not rich to buy cheap stuff", simply meaning, cheap items get broken easily, so it's better to pay a little bit more for better quality.
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People generally categorize "cheap apartments for rent" as apartments located in bad neighborhoods or apartments that are not as well kept as those in " more expensive communities". However, generally when people search for "cheap apartments for rent", what they are really looking for is low-income apartments. Apartment pricing usually has a lot to do with the demographic and overall makeup of the community in which it is located. For instance, if I look up cheap apartments, it is because I am looking for something within a lower price range, not something that's just generally cheap. The even more interesting thing is that the word cheap generally denotes a low quality, but honestly that is not always the case. When it comes to apartments for rent, yes there are some that are cheap because of the lack of upkeep, the area its located in, or lack of care from management and previous & current residents. However, yes this blog is about "cheap apartments for rent", but cheap as in affordable not cheap as in low quality.
A great example to help understand the cheap aspect would be used cars. Usually, when looking for a used car, you want something on the affordable side; thus, leading you to search for cheap cars. When searching "cheap cars" you're not looking for what people would call a car that is a lemon - as in only works for about 30 days after purchase, and was low priced. More than likely you are actually looking for a car that came out probably five years or so ago that has low to medium mileage and will run with little work being put into it- but at an affordable price. This choice more than likely applies to people searching "cheap cars for rent". The same would apply to apartments. Every city will have a different place.
Another great example of a cheap apartment for rent- would be the spare bedroom of a friend or family member. Usually, if we're looking for something cheap or affordable it's because our money is not as aligned as we would want it to be. So, technically the easiest way to get off our feet would be to partner with someone we know so that the burden of bills is not as heavy on us alone. However, the downfall to this is it is that some companies do not allow roommates who were not originally listed on the lease. Another issue could be if you and your roommate have an argument and they ask you to leave it puts you back at square one. Last, but not lease if your new roommate's lease expires shortly thereafter you moving in than it may end up hindering you more than helping you.
When looking up any apartments for rent you want to know your budget especially if you are a first-time renter. You also want to consider factoring the price of renters insurance in that budget because it will prove to be most helpful in the event that a natural disaster or incident was to occur. You need to also know the area in which you are observing to rent. Look at the buildings, people, demographic and overall makeup of the area, this will help you gauge the type of pricing these apartments for rent, will cost you. The bottom price that you can pay for a base apartment eventually is going to be correlated with the environment and the zip code that you're choosing. Moreover, rent price that is correlated with the demographic of the neighborhood, meaning the cheapest apartment in Los Angeles is not going to be the cheapest apartment in Wisconsin. For example, if we look at Memphis, the cheapest housing for rent you could probably find would be a trailer home. Instead of searching for "cheap apartments for rent", you could search for low-income apartments or second chance friendly apartments for rent. When changing your search terms, it will ultimately change your search results. If you are having an unusually hard time finding an apartment you can seek assistance such as Section 8, but if you make this choice you want to make sure you establish a healthy relationship with your landlord because Section 8 requires participation from both the renter and the landlord.
Now that we know that searching for cheap apartments is not necessarily the best way to find affordable apartments anywhere. Let me show you some sure-fire ways to find those affordable apartments we are all looking for. The first thing I would do is search for is affordable apartments for rent. For this blog, I searched "affordable apartments for rent in Memphis". Upon using those words in my search query, Google search showed apartments for rent, but under a certain price range. Thus leading me to believe that most Memphians deem apartments for rent under $400.00 or apartments for rent under $700.00 as affordable.
More than likely, those two search results will provide you with better results and more options. If you know your price range, I would suggest searching for apartments for rent with a price range listed in the search. This will help narrow down your choices. If you are a first-time renter and you also want to stay within a certain range, I would search "apartments for rent for first-time renters", but with that search also include your price range.
Maybe you have been renting for a while, but do not have the best rental history. Of course, because of the negative rental history, it is going to be difficult to find a place to stay because rental history is a display of your credibility. However, as I mentioned before second chance apartments for rent may be your best choice. Now generally the deposit for these types of properties may be a little higher due to the risk factor, but the rent is usually on the affordable side. Ultimately, second chance properties are there to help you get back on your feet, so often they are able to work with lower income amounts and other different things that some apartments for rent may not be willing to allow due to their stringent qualifications.
In the end, how you search for apartments for rent will determine your results. It seems that it is always easier to find things out of our price range. It seems that the things the internet deems as quality tends to be the more expensive, but in all honesty, it's about the tenacity and dedication of your pursuit that will determine your outcome.
Happy "affordable" apartment hunting.