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6 Great Apartment Hunting Tips We Learned From TikTok

Photos by @ShelbyTangorra, @chicagowithkati, @arielandapparel via TikTok

Not everyone wants to—or is able to—buy a home in today’s crazy housing market. But even renters with zero interest in homeownership are feeling the heat. In the past several months, rental costs for new tenants have more than doubled, reaching the highest levels on record.

In other words: If you’re in the throes of hunting for a new apartment in this market, you can use some help. And believe it or not, one of the best sources for housing advice these days is TikTok.

As it turns out, the hugely popular video-sharing app is teeming with real estate agents, brokers, landlords, and savvy tenants eager to share their experiences with the highs and lows of apartment hunting. So if you’re determined to nab a great apartment and not spend an arm and a leg during the process, click on the videos below.

1. Stop scrolling and start driving

@jordyntayy

#1 tip when apartment hunting! 🏡 #apartmenthunting #longbeachcalifornia #apartmenthacks

♬ Sunny Day – Ted Fresco

Jordyn Ruiz (@jordyntayy), a content creator who shares apartment living advice, suggests that apartment hunters stop scrolling on the internet and, instead, get in their car and drive around the neighborhoods where they want to live.

Ruiz says she found her one-bedroom, one-bath apartment in Long Beach, CA, by searching “For Rent” signs in the neighborhood. You never know what you’re going to find. Old school!

We also suggest looking at bulletin boards at local churches, laundromats, and grocery stores.

2. Validate the video and look closely

@shelbytangorra

I was on vaycay but I’m back besties! to book, email me at showingsbyshelby@gmail.com 🤍 #apartment #apartmenttour #nyc #nycapartment #rent #nyclife

♬ original sound – Shelby Tangorra

Shelby Tangorra (@ShelbyTangorra) has a niche career in creating video tours of apartments and homes for clients who can’t see them in person. She’s also very familiar with the apartment bait and switch in which the real-life apartment looks far less glamorous than the online version.

Before you even tour the apartment in person, Tangorra advises prospective renters to ask the landlord or property manager for a video of the unit that clearly shows the unit number as they walk through the door. That way you’ll know the unit you’re inquiring about looks the same as it does in the listing.

Once you tour the apartment in person, keep your head down—to look at the floor.

“I always look at the floors first,” Tangorra says. “If there’s a gap between the floor and the baseboard, it is an easy entry for pests.”

Tangorra also suggests testing cellphone service in every room and looking for the location of the cable ports.

3. Get intel from current tenants

@shelbytangorra

Reply to @liz.xoxox apologies for the delayed response on this one but fantastic question bestie! #nyc #nycapartment #apartment #apartmenttour #rent

♬ original sound – Shelby Tangorra

When you tour an apartment, Tangorra suggests talking it up with the tenants who currently live there or any neighbors you see.

“The tenants who live there are more than willing to spill the tea on living in the building—things about the management, other tenants, even weird smells or noises you might encounter,” Tangorra says.

4. Visit day and night, and test everything

@arielandapparel

Apartment hunting tips and what to look for. #movingout #apartmenthunting #adulting

♬ original sound – Toronto Creator

“Check out the neighborhood during the day and during the night,” says Ariel Benjamin (@arielandapparel). “Also, prioritize what’s important to you and make sure you can see that in your place. For me, it’s natural lighting, so I have to see what the apartment looks like during the day.”

Benjamin also suggests giving the apartment you want a good once-over. Turn on the shower and faucets to check the water pressure, and flush the toilets. Then, make sure all electrical outlets work.

5. Timing is everything

@chicagowithkati

Follow for more apartment hunting pro tips! #chicagoapartment #chicagorealestate

♬ Surf – Mac Miller

Kati Catalogna (@chicagowithkati) is a luxury apartment finder in Chicago who says that apartments in her city will rent for $112 more if you sign your lease on the weekend versus during the week.

“That amounts to more than $1,300 extra per year,” Catalogna says.

6. Think twice before jumping into a two-year lease

@cash.jordan

Here’s how to save money on rent. #apartmenthacks #apartmenthunting #rentershack #nycapartment #nycrealestate

♬ original sound – Cash Jordan

If you want to save as much money as possible on your next apartment contract, New York City apartment expert Cash Jordan (@cash.jordan) says to reject a two-year lease if your landlord offers one.

“Instead, tell them you want the option to renew at [the same] rate in a year without being required to do so,” he says.

Will they go for it? It’s worth a try.

“It’s only an upside for you because if rents go up or stay the same, you get the same rent, and if they fall, you can either walk away from that apartment or you can negotiate yourself a lower rate,” he explains.

The post 6 Great Apartment Hunting Tips We Learned From TikTok appeared first on Real Estate News & Insights | realtor.com®.

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