5 Things That You Should Know before Renting an Apartment in San Francisco

shutterstock_66967594Are you contemplating the idea of selling all your stuff and relocating to a city that would always give you something to do and see and help you prevent boredom? If your answer is yes, then maybe you should start looking for a rental in San Francisco, the vibrant Californian city who has inspired many prominent personalities, including Anthony Bourdain, who made shocking statement, declaring the following: “Anyone who doesn’t have a great time in San Francisco is pretty much dead to me.”

Why Should You Consider Moving to San Francisco?

Jokes and exaggerations aside, we could probably give you one million different reasons that would justify your intention to pack your bags and start a new life as a tenant in San Francisco. The friendly people, countless attractive job opportunities in different sectors, wonderful golden sunsets, beautiful rolling hills and majestic surrounding forests are only a few of the elements that define this pretty picture.

Believe it or not, San Francisco is the only city in the world that has actually found a name for its fog: Karl the Fog is incredibly active on Twitter and shares the funniest messages that could put a smile on your face even after the most stressful day at work. “Goodnight San Francisco. May you dream of finding someone special who responds to your texts with more than one word answers” is the kind of statement that makes you love Karl the Fog and realize that even the least pleasant factors can gain positive connotations in San Francisco.

The ever-changing weather stops you from investing in seasonal clothing storage and lets you wear your best-loved wardrobe highlights year-round.  Moreover, San Francisco is a dreamy environment with redwood forests, cool beaches and mountains. If you’re into spicy Mexican food, you’ll want to spend the rest of your days in this city, which is also famous for its healthy bike epidemic, great famers’ markets, huge parks and a nurturing sense of community. In a nutshell, San Francisco is filled with temptations that may convince you to pour all your savings into a for rent or for sale property.

5 Things That You Should Know before Renting a Place in San Francisco

Now that we have shown you the main advantages that your big move could help you unlock, perhaps it’s time to take a closer look at different aspects that you should consider before starting your first apartment search in San Francisco.

  1. Renting an Apartment in San Francisco Isn’t Exactly Cheap. How much money do you have in your bank account and how much do you expect to make on a monthly basis? Based on these answers, you can figure out whether or not a San Francisco rental would be the perfect match for you. As a recent article published by Huffington Post points out, you would have to earn at least $137,129 per year to be able to afford a new roof over your head in San Francisco. According to the same source, the most expensive city in America is constantly getting more expensive, and can become the core of a tenant’s worst nightmare. With rental rates exceeding the $4,000 milestone, it’s safe to say that you would require significant financial support to get the keys to a 2-bedroom apartment located in San Francisco’s most desirable neighborhoods, such as Dogpatch and South Beach, where rentals are in the $4,300 range.
  2. You Can Always Target a Few Budget-Friendly Neighborhoods in San Francisco. Truth be told, some parts of the city let you discover attractive rentals carrying less prohibitive price tags. For instance, the foggy Richmond District comprises more than a few appealing for rent properties that you could occupy for approximately $2,750 per month. Not many people could afford to list these options as bargains, but still, a house under $2,800 per month available in this area, or in other cheaper neighborhoods such as Oceanview, Outer Sunset or Excelsior, is the most convenient alternative to that $4,170 Panhandle –based rental apartment that you like to daydream about, but can’t afford.
  3. The Local Real Estate Market Is Extremely Diverse. From single-family homes in the $2,000 range to small studios that cost twice as much, San Francisco will always overwhelm you with a great variety of properties for rent, matching different budget, lifestyles and expectations. This is one of the reasons why it is so important to count on a great apartment finding service to spot and compare properties with just a few clicks before investing a dime in a new home.
  4. Buying May Not Be the Best Call. Yes, you could choose to bring stability to your life and take on new responsibilities by exploring the advantages of home ownership. At the end of the day, if you can afford to buy a piece of real estate, you could always turn your new house or apartment into a high-end rental to supplement your income and strike gold as a landlord. However, you should know that this option is feasible only if you’re already sitting on a pile of money, given that the median home sales price is estimated at $1,080,000 and reflects a 13% increase compared to the numbers reported one year ago, while the average listing price is $1,337,951 and indicates a 1.6% growth, according to the stats published by Trulia.
  5. You Can Always Find the Most Attractive Rentals in Your Price Range with Apartment Hunterz. Even when you’re intimidated by sky-high costs and your lack of information related to local real estate markets, you can still find convenient rentals in San Francisco and in any other Californian city, using the data provided by Apartment Hunterz. Take a look at thousands of recent listings, pick and save your favorites and benefit from an ample collection of tools especially designed to turn your apartment search into a lovely experience.

How to Share Your Rented Apartment with a Roommate without Losing Your Mind

shutterstock_289979564Ever since you were a teenager, you have always wanted to move to California, share an apartment with your best friends, live on $1 fast-food menus, change jobs and houses at a fast pace and live a life of adventure.

At this point, as a responsible adult, you have other goals and expectations and wish to make the most of every single opportunity that California can offer you to grow on a personal and professional level. So here you are, trying to find an affordable property for rent that you could call home for a long period of time.

Should You Share Your Space with a Friend or a Stranger?

Since your modest income doesn’t really allow you to be very selective and want to find and rent a decent place where you wouldn’t be embarrassed to host a party or let a friend sleep on your couch, you are considering the idea of getting one or more roommates.

Nonetheless, the thought of sharing your living space with a total stranger can be quite daunting. At the same time, sharing your rented apartment with a friend may cause frustration and disappointment, and possibly even ruin the one great relationship that has lasted more than a week. The good news is that your situation isn’t as bad as it may seem. The way we see it, you have two options at hand: you could either use the insight offered by Apartment Hunterz to start looking for a smaller apartment that you could afford; or you could follow plan B and start interviewing potential roommates. If you’d rather explore the latter option, here are a few tips that you could apply to avoid turning your flatmate into a frenemy.

  1. Rely on Social Media to “Read” All Your Candidates. Let’s get one thing straight: first impressions can be quite deceiving, especially when people are motivated to portray themselves in the best light. Think about it this way: finding a great roommate (like yourself), who holds the key to an affordable, awesome-looking apartment located in one of the best neighborhoods in the city is no easy task.

This is why most candidates interested in becoming your bedfellows won’t hesitate to lie about their guilty pleasures and bad habits (like stealing your snacks from your cabinet drawer, partying every night until 5 am or having uninvited guests overnight without asking for your permission). Luckily, a little bit of social media research will allow you to identify potential red flags in no time and separate the weirdos from the people who are reliable, friendly and decent enough to become your roommates.

  1. Divide the Costs in a Transparent Manner. While you and your roommates know just how much money you have to spend on rent each month, utility bills can catch you by surprise and tear a hole in your budget. This is why you should plan ahead and avoid being the one and only account holder, to prevent unpleasant surprises, like the unexpected departure of your flatmate who “forgot” to pay his share.

Therefore, you should probably set up the Internet, electric and gas accounts as soon as you move into your new apartment and find a bunkmate whom you can trust. Fewer individual hassles lead to a superior long-term insurance. For instance, you could write the rent check, while your roommates take care of utility bills. You can always pay each other back using a great variety of tools, such as Venmo or PayPal, or in cash. Share the costs in a transparent manner; leave the bills on the fridge or on the table, do the math and make a footnote to highlight how much money each flatmate owes.

  1. Set Specific Ground Rules. Furthermore, keep in mind the fact that there will always be certain differences between you and your roommates, in terms of preferences, habits, likes and dislikes. After all, you have different personalities, backgrounds, passions and interests. You can prevent crises fueled by these discrepancies by setting up a series of ground rules. Are you allergic to cats? Let your bunkmate know. Are you an obsessive-compulsive organizer who hates to see piles of dirty dishes in the sink? Again, share this secret with the people who live inside your house. Great communication is the key to a drama-free, enjoyable apartment sharing experience.
  2. Share the Chores in an Equitable Manner. Assign cleaning and maintenance tasks to each roommate to keep your apartment spotless and prevent conflicts and misunderstandings. If you don’t want to be the only one who washes the dishes or brushes toilets, make a chore wheel and turn the house cleaning process into a fun, friendly competition. With so many free templates available online, you could retrieve, download and personalize your favorite design in less than half an hour. At the end of each week, encourage your roommates to spin the chore chart and get to work.
  3. Always Count on a Backup Plan. OK, so sharing an apartment with friends or total strangers is not as easy as you tend to think. An apartment sharing experience is not always similar to the one that you’ve envisioned after watching a few “Friends” episodes. People change. They break the rules. They get tired of sharing their territory with other people. All these worst case scenarios force you to come up with a good backup plan. Our advice is to start using the listings provided by Apartment Hunterz to find a great Californian rental apartment that you could afford on your own. This way, you wouldn’t have to worry about living under the same roof with people whom you hardly know or trust. Let Apartment Hunterz simplify your selection and discover the most attractive deals on the Californian real estate market in only a few days.

 

5 Reasons Why You Should Start Your Californian Apartment Search Online

shutterstock_257094796A few years ago, finding the perfect property for rent in a city or neighborhood that you knew nothing about was a complicated, time-consuming and potentially risky business. Basically, you had to spend a few hours daily touring different parts of the city, looking for “for rent” signs, meeting property managers and talking to existing tenants behind their landlord’ back.

People looking for a new roof over their heads in California can still embrace this old-school approach to conducting an apartment hunt, or they can choose to take an alternative route and surf the Internet to spot the most attractive options in terms of price, features, amenities and location.

5 Reasons Why You Should Start Using an Online Apartment Finding Service

If you can’t figure out which search method would work best for you, keep reading to uncover the 5 main reasons why you should start using a world-class apartment finding service right away.

  1. Everybody Else Is Doing It. At work, you are a leader, not a part of the herd. You make decisions based on your knowledge and expertise; when in doubt, you trust your instincts. This is why you don’t like to do things in a certain way, just because everybody else is following the same course of action. However, when it comes to looking for a new home in California, you have to make an exception and explore every path and every single tactic that all the rest of the apartment seekers are relying on to achieve their goals.

Here’s why: first of all, in today’s market, it is almost impossible to stumble across properties for rent that you could describe as a total steal. Secondly, the demand is high and the housing inventory is low. Think of what motivates you to put down roots in Cali, including its awesome year-round weather, great jobs, cool beaches and even cooler people, and you’ll soon realize why so many other individuals are striving to get the best deals on the local real estate market. Not convinced? If so, take a look at the hard numbers unveiled by Realtor.com. These recent stats indicate that 9 in 10 house hunters see the internet as their primary research source, while 56% of all respondents turn to the Internet during the first step of their apartment search. Hopefully, these numbers will ensure a better understanding of the digitalization of apartment searches and convince you to start looking for rentals in California online.

  1. An Online Search Implied Less Effort. Here’s the problem with traditional house hunting techniques: they are time-consuming and boring. They require your presence in different parts of the city and force you to leave your home and office just when you’re starting to feel productive and don’t have time or energy for any type of distractions. On the other hand, online searches return the best results in your own environment, making it easier for you to separate the awe-inspiring listings from the yawn-inspiring ones without having to tour them in person.
  2. An Online Apartment Search Helps You Save Time and Money. Each hour spent outside your office building can make you lose time and money associated with new or ongoing projects. Fortunately, now you can eliminate this disadvantage by looking for properties online, from the comfort of your home or office. For instance, Apartment Hunterz delivers a generous collection of listings and also offers a great variety of search tools that make it easier for you to retrieve attractive rentals with a few clicks. Moreover, you can save your searches and revisit your favorite options whenever, wherever.
  3. Apartment Locators Offer You State-of-the-Art Tools Ensuring a Simpler House Hunt. From tools designed to facilitate an instant, uninterrupted communication between landlords and tenants to support centers for both parties, modern apartment finding services provide all the assistance one could ever require to find, filter and save listings, schedule convenient in-person meetings with property managers and upload or download the necessary forms.
  4. A Great Apartment Finding Service Will Help You Keep Your Options Open. When it comes to renting a place in a city that you know nothing about, the real challenge is to target the areas providing the highest number of for rent properties matching your specific criteria, including monthly rates, layout, number of bedrooms and bathrooms and available amenities. Luckily, advanced apartment finding services help you broaden your horizons, by offering you detailed listings available in different Californian cities and neighborhoods where you could actually afford to rent a house or an apartment. You would just have to do your homework to research various ZIP codes and let the search engine guide you towards the available rentals in your area of choice.

How to Profit from a Flawless Online Apartment Finding Experience

Now that you have uncovered some of the secrets of the leasing industry, you are probably thinking about using an apartment finding service to spot the best rentals in a certain Californian city of neighborhood. Before going any further, evaluate your needs, demand and possibilities in an objective manner. Create a budget for your big move and stick to it.

If you think that you could get the keys to a two-bedroom apartment in downtown Los Angeles with in-unit washer and dryer, floor-to-ceiling windows and hardwood floors for less than $1,000 per month you are probably wasting your time and energy. Always identify and compare median rent prices before setting your heart on a particular ZIP code and use the insight provided by Apartment Hunterz to refine your search using various filters, communicate with landlords and schedule in-person property tours that could lead to a faultless apartment renting experience.

 

06
Oct 2015
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Things That You Should Factor in Before Deciding to Monetize Your Californian Apartment

shutterstock_231320299For many months in a row, you have struggled to supplement your income the rapid, easy and perfectly legal way. You’ve worked overtime and spent many nights awake, thinking about new, ingenious business ideas that you could pursue to make more money. However, none of these approaches to getting rich have returned the desirable results, so now you are turning your attention to the most valuable asset that you could use to add a significant amount of money to your savings on a monthly basis: your California-based apartment.

Should You Rent Out Your Home to a Complete Stranger?

Since you already have a roof over your head, you can afford the luxury to rent out your property. In this context, the question that you need to answer is this: what kind of strategies should you employ to monetize your slice of real estate in the most effective way? After giving some thought to this matter, you realize that you would very much like to turn your apartment into an attractive short-term rental that could offer you the opportunity to interact with more people, establish fruitful tenant-landlord relationships, offset the costs associated with your property (such as mortgage payments and home improvement expenses) and maybe even set some money aside for a rainy day.

Nonetheless, your decision to do business with complete strangers may pose several risks. To begin with, how would you be able to handle potential complaints made by neighbors, deal with repair/improvement requests, collect rent and manage other responsibilities that experience landlords usually balance with ease? Moreover, what happens if your tenant destroys your property and refuses to cover the losses that he or she has caused? How could you evict a problematic tenant without breaking the law and exposing yourself to further complications?

These are just a few of the most important questions that you should answer before turning yourself into a so-called “accidental” landlord.

3 Key Aspects That You Should Analyze Very Carefully Before Deciding to Rent Out Your Apartment

To get the bigger picture here and make an informed decision in what your future as a potential lessor is concerned, keep reading to analyze the main aspects related to a stress-free apartment leasing experience.

  1. The Advantages of Turning Your Californian Property into a Cash Cow. Start by listing the main factors that could convince you to become a first-time landlord. More specifically, why would you be inclined to turn your Californian apartment into a short-term rental? Go beyond the obvious monetary advantages, and you’ll realize the fact that you could unlock a series of additional benefits by renting out your property, including flexibility, social connections and a special form of empowerment.

As a landlord who owns a superb piece of real estate in one of the most desirable tenant-friendly Californian cities, you can afford to be flexible when choosing the dates when you would like to rent out your accommodation option. For instance, you could try to find a tenant that could occupy your home while you’re on vacation. This way, you would manage to cover your utility costs, make some extra money and prevent security risks while you’re far away from home.

Furthermore, by meeting many people and allowing them to sleep on your couch or rent your apartment for a short while, you could expand your circle of friends and establish mutually beneficial relationships in the long run. Last but not least, Californian rentals always empower their landlords, by enabling them the opportunity to fulfill their dreams and satisfy a certain need. For example, a landlord could use the income generated by his or her apartment to prevent foreclosure, get out of debt or travel extensively, while another one could use the extra cash to make a down payment for a new house or a car.

  1. The Risks of Monetizing Your Apartment. After listing all these benefits, it is extremely important to acknowledge the risks associated with your decision to rent out your apartment to a bunch of strangers. We have already discussed the main potential threats; most of them revolve around theft, property damage and financial losses. The good news is that you can always keep risk factors in check by investing in a home insurance policy; also, it wouldn’t hurt to implement a few extra measures of precaution, especially since prevention is better than cure. For example, you could use the info provided by a great local apartment finding service to screen tenants the easy way. Apartment Hunterz lets you communicate with rental seekers in real time, while downloading and uploading forms to simplify the entire transaction. Make the most of this type of support to separate scammers and unreliable candidates with prospects with serious intentions, whom you could never perceive as a potential threat.
  2. The Simplest Ways to Convert Your Property into a Lovely Short-Term Rental. Now that you can evaluate both the risks and advantages of renting out your house or apartment in California, you are probably wondering: what’s the simplest, safest and most convenient way to find a great tenant for my short-term rental? In other words, how could you promote your home to reduce your costs and effort and maximize your satisfaction?

Here’s an idea worth exploring: instead of relying on traditional media and word-of-mouth to keep your estate in the public eye, make the most of the ever-growing popularity and influence of online channels to reach your target. Start by advertising your listings via Apartment Hunterz and use a great variety of tools especially designed for landlords to improve the visibility of your ad, get in touch with prospects, screen all candidates with ease and find the perfect tenant in only a few days. This type of service has revolutionized the way in which people rent out their properties in California, so if you’re striving to monetize one of your slices of real estate, give it a try to strike gold as a first-time landlord.