Updated: Mar 8, 2022
Living in an apartment is not just about saving money, it's also about security, convenience, and reducing time-consuming maintenance that you'd have with a traditional house. It's about making you a part of a diverse and welcoming community where everyone looks out for each other.
We know that every decision has its pros and cons and living in an apartment complex is no
different. So, if you're thinking of moving into an apartment or a residential complex, we are here to help you explore some important factors to make an informative and valuable decision.
From understanding your budget and where you would prefer to live, to what is more important to you - the amenities or the inside of the apartment? There is always going to be a trade-off, but with careful consideration, you can discover the rewards apartment complexes can provide.
Let’s dive into a few key questions that everyone always asks when it comes to living
in an apartment complex...
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What is an Apartment Complex?
Living in complexes is growing in popularity among young adults, families, and retired
couples, but what are these units exactly, and why are more people investing in them?
An apartment complex consists of one or more buildings or apartments located in a small or
large unit. It is owned by a single property owner or association. Complexes are likened to
gated communities where residents benefit from the shared access to amenities such as
swimming pools, social areas, and playgrounds for children.
While complexes include living in close proximity to neighbors, it is governed by an
association and includes regulations to protect the rights and privacy of all tenants.
Complexes are also considered a safer alternative with most including 24-hour
security and monitored/authorized access.
Many different types of apartment complexes exist in the USA from retirement and family
complexes to single apartments. Depending on your living requirements, you can find the
ideal complex to complement your lifestyle and affordability. Apartment complexes offer
unique amenities some including swimming pools and public gyms while high-end or luxury apartments provide access to private tennis courts and lounge areas.
II. Why is Living in an Apartment Better?
The convenience, safety, and the value of living in an apartment complex are among the
many reasons such residencies are growing in demand. An apartment complex offers a
lifestyle. With its variety of amenities and communal living, you will find your new lock up and go a safe, secure, and richly rewarding space.
Apartments in themselves are diverse in design and you can find anything from well-maintained amenities and spacious or open-plan interiors to modest units with a small garden, balcony, and little upkeep.
Is There Value in Apartments to Rent?
Over the last 50 years, rental properties have skyrocketed in the US compared to general house sales, and with good reason. People invest in apartments because of the financial opportunity it offers. Because living in an apartment doesn't require constant maintenance that is associated with a house, there are greater savings. Forget about cutting the lawn, fixing the plumbing, or repairing the roof. These things are taken care of by your landlord or property management team.
Apartments also offer peace of mind your property is safeguarded against intruders and is a simpler lifestyle for those who do not desire the responsibility of managing a residential property.
From complexes designed for comfort, security to accommodate the needs of families to high-end units with access control, you will find that living in an apartment is fast becoming the better and the smarter choice for both short and long-term renting purposes.
III. What are the Advantages and Disadvantages of Living in an Apartment?
The different styles and features of properties cater to different lifestyles and life stages. If
you are a young professional, looking to start a new family, or wish to live in the city center,
a local apartment could be just what you need.
For apartment living, tenants enjoy its simple upkeep and affordable monthly rent;
however, an apartment complex may not be suited to everyone.
IV. The Advantages of Living in an Apartment
Apartment rentals are more affordable and accessible compared to seeking a home loan
and making mortgage payments. Even if you have bad credit, you have a better chance of being approved to rent an apartment than getting a home loan. As long as your income is more than your debts and you have a full-time job, you can afford to rent an apartment.
You can also find cost effective rentals that will help you save towards buying a house or reducing your debts and improving your credit rating.
Apartment complexes are managed by a body corporate or association ensuring general
maintenance from garden areas to repainting are taken of. Should anything go wrong with the plumbing or electric, the complex has a technical team to come out to complete inspections and repairs. The onus does not lie on you to perform these maintenance tasks.
Essential Services Management
Plumbing, electrical, and related household services are managed by the landlord or
property owner. This reduces out-of-pocket expenses including monthly home insurance.
Depending on the apartment complex, you can access the available amenities.
Modern apartments offer access to swimming pools, child daycare, play areas for kids,
storage, security monitoring, controlled access, and laundry services.
Apartment owners can benefit from the flexible lifestyle complexes offer. Rather than
commit to a single stand, you can rent an apartment across the coast in the summer, and as
your lifestyle changes, upscale your city living. It depends on the conditions of your lease.
V. The Disadvantages of Living in an Apartment
If you are moving from a house to an apartment, significant downscaling of furniture and
general goods is a must. You receive less square footage than you would with a house. One
could argue that an apartment is for a minimalist lifestyle.
Communal areas mean less privacy concerning outdoor activities, no yard, and depending
on the apartment, no balcony.
Permission to Make Changes
To perform any changes to the existing apartment, you must be granted permission by the
landlord. Whether hanging a painting or changing the wall color, always consult with the
property owner or manager prior to modifications or it could risk the loss of your security deposit.
Short Term Living
It is often dependent on a lease agreement that runs from 6 months to a year.
VI. What are the Disadvantages of Living in a House?
Now that we’ve explored the pros and cons of living in an apartment, investigating the reasons more people are looking to the apartment lifestyle requires a look at the
disadvantages of living in a house for comparison.
Owning a home is expensive. For most people, it is difficult to qualify for a home loan or
mortgage which limits their options concerning property size, location, and features. The
monthly payments concerning a home, are unaffordable for many single working
professionals, entrepreneurs, couples, and new families.
You are responsible for all costs, maintenance, and upkeep of the property. From gardening
and landscaping to plumbing, electrical and general damages, these out of pocket expenses
are the responsibility of the homeowner.
Any hidden roof, flooring, and plumbing or electrical issues that become apparent after the
sale, and you will be required to cover the cost. A property inspection is one way you can
minimize such costly surprises.
Purchasing a house is generally expensive but if you have an affluent location in mind, this
could send your budget through the roof! Homes in specific areas can be few and far
between. You may wait months to years for a property to become available in a specific
VII. Is Living in an Apartment Safe?
Living in an apartment complex is one of the safest moves you could make provided you research the complex, the location, and the neighborhood!
Most apartment complexes have round-the-clock access control or manned security and potential intruders would find it incredibly difficult if not challenging, to make their way past the security monitors or other apartment units to gain initial access. Apartments are busier than a free-standing home which also makes it more difficult for theft to take place. This is not to say that it never happens, but with homework into the general safety of a unit and neighborhood, it is generally a better option.
Let's look at common security features and services found in apartment complexes:
Most complexes have CCTV installed. This includes 24-hour surveillance of common areas. Theft and burglaries are lowest in surveyed complexes, as intruders would have to pass access control, stairwells, and multiple apartment doors before making their way in and out.
In the event of a fire, extinguishers are available around the complex, making it easier to control flame spread before it causes major damage. Ensure your selection of high-rise buildings possesses the necessary fire safety certification.
Storage facilities and garages will keep your vehicles and valuables safe from access and prying eyes.
Play areas for children within the complex are also safer than if they were to venture into a public park.
Apartments also possess security lights that burn through the night and maximize exposure.
VIII. How Can I Enjoy Living in an Apartment?
Simple and Minimalist Living
Living in a house, it is easy to become overwhelmed and frustrated by the clutter.
Apartments have less square footage making for a minimalist lifestyle. You can also lock up
and go, with peace of mind that your valuables will be safe. Living in an apartment simply
makes for easier living.
Belong to a Community
For many people, a sense of community is an important part of determining where to stay.
Apartments offer a strong sense of community with many offering local activities to get to
know your neighbors, fun-day events, and communal areas that are shared encouraging a
More Time to Do What You Love
With maintenance taken care of by your landlord or body corporate, you have more time
and more cash, to do the things you love.
IX. Why Is It Important to Read a Rental Agreement Closely?
It is important to read a rental agreement or lease to avoid missing any fine print. Understand the details of your tenancy before you sign the contract to save time, money, and much heartache or misunderstanding at the end of the day.
Read the Document in Its Entirety
While pages of verbiage may not be a fun thing to do, it is a necessary one. Read through all
paragraphs to avoid being caught by any hidden terms in your lease.
Don’t Take Their Word for It
When interacting with landlords or property managers, do not merely take their word as
surety. Investigate and read the apartment lease before signing on the dotted line.
Exercise Sound Judgement
When reading the documents and you find a clause or condition you are not satisfied with,
discuss this with the manager or landlord but do not sign. Until you can negotiate and
rewrite the clause, avoid adding your signature or paying any fees.
All Changes Must be Made in Writing
Never agree to a change in documentation verbally. Any additions or subtractions must
reflect in the written agreement itself.
Carefully Examine the Costs
From the deposit to the rental, do not fail to understand what you will be paying in total (no
add-ons) each month.
X. Should You See an Apartment Before Signing a Lease?
Not only should you see an apartment before signing a lease you have the right to! It is a
good idea to perform an inspection of the apartment during daylight when most areas are
easily visible. Look at the condition of features such as carpeting, finishes, appliances,
door locks, and general plumbing.
Many apartment lessees forget to consider the apartment dimensions making it difficult to accommodate furniture upon moving in. The layout of the living areas should also be practical and best complement your lifestyle.
Tenants can also request that a report be issued concerning existing property damage. The report is issued by the landlord and includes any stains, broken fixtures, damaged walls, and similar issues. Taking note of existing damages will prevent you from being held liable and possibly losing your deposit, upon the end of your lease. Any damage can be queried well before signing the agreement to avoid unnecessary costs and an attachment to a lease that you cannot get out of.
XII. In Conclusion
Apartment living provides a strong sense of community, it is flexible, a simple lifestyle, and you can choose which features or number of bedrooms are best.
Apartment complexes are available in different styles from contemporary with open plan
living to modest and comfortable for property starters. Modern apartments also offer a
lifestyle that is more than just a home. Many have access to the latest amenities including a
swimming pool and gym or laundry while others are located in the city center and
beautifully maintained, suited to the city hustle and bustle.
Apartments can include wonderful views, close-knit communal living, and high levels of security, particularly when located in a gated or access-controlled community. Its minimal maintenance and affordability contribute to its attractiveness for tenants and developers.
If you are looking for a way to enter the property market with a home that provides less maintenance, affordability, and a strong sense of community, then apartment living is for you.
As a last word of precaution, always remember to read the lease agreement prior to signing it. Have the apartment inspected or look at it yourself to ensure it provides what you need for the time you will be staying there. Factors from its practicality and location to its security and features for families will help you make a valuable and rewarding decision.