Apartment Hunt 101: Researching the Area

Snow on the StoopsLooking for your first apartment can be time consuming and stressful. From deciding how many bedrooms and square footage to comparing the look and feel of different units, it’s enough to make anyone’s head spin. However, one crucial detail to also consider is your apartment’s location for many reasons. Consider the following about your apartment’s location before signing any contract:

Proximity to work

This is the most important consideration, in my opinion. As most of us have to commute to work 5 days a week, being close to your office or work location can make a huge difference. Always use Google Maps or other apps to estimate your commute and find areas where you can get to work and back home faster and with easiest connections. Don’t make your decision only based on proximity to work, but it should be a key consideration.

Proximity to play

Another important location question to ask is: how far is this apartment from where I spend most of my time? If you generally spend nights and weekends in a certain neighborhood, check out apartments there. Consider where friends and family live as well. Choosing a location you love (and that offers different options for eating, night life, outdoor activity) will not only make your apartment experience fun, but will likely save you lots of money in gas and Uber fees!

Safety of neighborhood

Make sure to only look at apartments that you would be comfortable living in. Check online for your area’s crime rates and Google-search each apartment complex to look for news articles outlining any recent criminal activity there. If there are poor reviews for the complex, consider looking elsewhere.

Accessibility to public transportation

If you rely on public transportation to get around, try to find an apartment that is close to a stop. Spending too much time walking back and forth to public transit can quickly become frustrating, so try to map out your best commute options before picking an apartment.

Local amenities

Moving into an apartment gives you a great excuse to get familiar with a new neighborhood! Look for apartments that have fun facilities, or look for apartments in neighborhoods that have a lot to offer. Look for unique restaurants and nightlife, outdoor activities (parks, walking trails, bike paths), and other activities that you enjoy!

Although it may cost a bit more to get to a place you really love, think over the above considerations┬ábefore signing your apartment’s contract. It may end up helping you save money in the long run, and can make your first apartment experience much more fun!

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Author My First Apartment

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Sarah is a dog lover and advocate for conversation & laughing at your own jokes. Since finishing her college career in communications, she began working (and living) in Atlanta. After living in a few different apartments over the last few years, she's ready to share experiences. Stay tuned for adventures, tips and advice!

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  1. Avatar Addie

    Transportation is one of the most important things, in my opinion. If you do not rely on public transportation, I think it is very important to get a sense of the neighborhood that you will be moving into. If you don’t have off the street parking, what are the cycles like? Will you have to park two or three blocks away from your place? All important to ask when deciding.