Sometimes, when you look at your monthly bills, you just can’t help but think how nice it would be to be a kid again. There’s no need to worry about food expenses, utility bills, and that dreaded monthly rent. But of course, you’re an adult now, and financial obligations can’t be avoided. One thing you can do though is to help lessen your rent expenses. We know how challenging it is to juggle bills if you’re barely making enough money, so here are some tips that can help you save money on rent.
Location, location, location
If you’re in the process of looking for a place to rent, keep in mind that those that are in the best locations are the most expensive. Sure, it’s convenient if you’re in the city hub, but because everybody wants to live there, the prices can be ridiculously pricey. The best way to go about this is to move a couple of miles away from the most popular spots. This way, you’ll save a few hundred dollars but you’re just a few blocks away from your favourite Japanese restaurant in the city.
Trade your valuable skills for discounts
Do you have awesome DIY skills? Why not put them to good use by trading them for a discount? Ask your landlord for any DIY projects you can do--fixing plumbing problems, installing electrical outlets, painting the walls, etc. Of course, you must be suitably qualified to do this. Hiring a professional to do these tasks will cost the landlord a huge sum, so your proposal is a win-win situation. The landlord gets to save on money and you get a slashed-off rental rate.
Get a roommate
Before you do though, make sure to ask your landlord first, and that you understand the legal requirements for this. With a roommate, you’ll have someone to share the bills with. But before you say yes to the first person who responds to your ad, do a thorough interview first. If your roommate ends up being lazy and irresponsible, you’ll be dealing with more problems aside from an expensive monthly rent.
Choose a rental package with perks
When choosing a place to rent, shop around and compare not only the monthly fee, but also the perks included. If you’re choices are a $650/month without perks and a $700/month + Wi-Fi + water + parking, your best option is the $700/month deal. Compute your expenses for Wi-Fi, water, and parking, and you’re bound to pay the same as or even more than $700. It might not make sense at first, but if you include your other expenses into the computation, you’re actually saving more money with the more expensive rate.
If all else fails, haggle
When planning to put your haggling skills to the test, be sure to do your homework first. Research on the current rates in your location, and get proof (online/paper ads) that your landlord’s asking price is a bit too much. Then prepare documents that prove you are a good tenant. These can include referrals from your previous landlords, credit report, and even bank statements. Armed with these documents, negotiate for a more reasonable price. Then prove to the landlord that you’re a tenant worth keeping because of your good behaviour and financial standing. Finding a good rental deal can be tricky. But with enough research and haggling, you’re sure to get the best deal. For more tips on how to save money, check out the Alpha Finance blog.