Shopping for your first apartment can be a scary task! Just about every adult will need to rent an apartment at some point in their lives, and if you are reading this article, looks like its your turn! So, when shopping for an apartment, what should you be looking for? This article digs into some of the ins and outs first time renters should consider before applying to an apartment complex.
1. How far from shopping are you?
Distance to shopping is crucial for many college students. In fact, according to credit.com, only 48% of college students have a car on campus. This means 52% of college students rely on others, public transportation, bikes, and walking to get around. If you are part of the majority, then considering where your closest grocery story is the difference between relying on an expensive meal plan at campus or depending on others for grocery shopping, which is no bueno, amigo. Fortunately, Holly Park has Acme within a 2-minute walk across the street and public transportation is accessible to get to Wal-Mart.
2. How far from your classes are you?
A real make or break to consider is how long it takes to get from your apartment to your classes. If you are an early riser, had a cup of coffee, working on next week’s assignment, blogging, and hit the gym all before 8 AM; you need to simmer down first, but distance from your apartment to classes isn’t as big of an issue. If, however, you are a typical college student, rolling out of bed and into class is sometimes the spice that makes an apartment 🙌. Take it from my experience, compounding the need to take public transportation to get groceries and class, usually you’ll end up missing at least a few classes a semester. Holly Park is a 15-minute walk to most classes on Kent State’s campus. We walked it in this video. If you are super cool, you can even OneWheel or bike around to get around campus without breaking much of a sweat.
3. Do you need space?
We aren’t in the dorms anymore, honey. Treat yourself! Get yourself a room of your own and toss out the bunk bed. The issue, however, is what if your queen size bed, desk, dresser, and Fluffy’s bed doesn’t fit? Make sure you are measuring and planning for the space you’ll be living in. If you’re existing furniture won’t fit in the room, will it be worth the investment to buy or rent furniture for your apartment? What makes Holly Park unique is all our floor plans have rooms large enough for queen size beds, desks, dressers, and Fluffy’s bed plus nightstands and floor lamps.
4. Who are you living with?
Unless you are living in an apartment by yourself, you need to make sure you can live with your roommate. All too often, we run into roommates who fight about seemingly silly things. This is the first time you are going to be living with someone and the stress can make mountains out of mole hills. Before you even consider an apartment, make sure you and your roommate(s) sit and discuss wants and needs with your future living situation. From there, draw up a chore schedule, who is bringing what to the apartment, agreements on sharing possessions, and personal boundaries ( for example: please stay out of my bedroom unless I give you permission). Something that sets Holly Park apart is we don’t do roommate matching. You decide who you live with and are never with people you don’t know.
5. Does your apartment budget match your lifestyle?
We all want to live in the newest apartments in Kent. This, however, doesn’t always match our budget. Before you rent, take time to consider your bills, social life, and shopping habits. You also need to consider life outside of Kent State. It’s always better to save money for a car that you’ll need to get to your future job or internship. So, rather than renting at the newest and fanciest apartment, consider a joint liability lease with people you can trust at an apartment that has tons of space. **Cough** Holly ** Cough** Park** Phew, don’t know what that was! Dry throat, maybe? 😅
6. Can you customize your apartment?
Not many people like the landlord’s colors, especially if they are stark white walls. Are you able to paint your walls, hang pictures, and bring your own furniture? Most individual leased apartments in Kent do not allow you to paint, hang pictures, and you are often stuck with flimsy hotel furniture. At Holly Park, we don’t care about what you paint the walls as long as you return them to the original condition! You can paint and hang pictures, just fix up your holes and prime the walls back to white. We believe that you should feel at home in your space.
7. Does the apartment complex communicate expectations?
Do you look at the apartment complex’s website and feel like it’s just a giant ad? Confused about how to move out, move in, prepping for health inspections, or even how to pay rent? Is there any effort in providing real information first time renter’s care about? Holly Park is the only apartment complex in Kent that focuses on providing information all renters need, even those who don’t live with us, to enjoy their apartments. We aren’t just about collecting rent; we care about our tenants. Can other complexes in the area say the same thing?