Rent-Direct.com’s

Complete Guide

for Smart Renters

 

Finding your rental strategy

Step 1: Decide What You Can Afford and What You’re Willing to Tradeoff

Step 2: Figure out if You Need a Guarantor

Step 3: Know Your Credit Report

Step 4: Prepare Your Application Package

Step 5: Use your Rent-Direct.com Account All Through the Day

Step 6: Charm the Landlord and Make An Appointment to See the Apartment

Step 7: Meet the Landlord and Inspect the Apartment

Step 8: Complete an Application, Get Accepted, Sign the Lease

Step 9: Congratulations on Your New Home!



Step 1: Decide What You Can Afford and What You’re Willing to Tradeoff


What can you afford?

As a rule of thumb, Manhattan area landlords require a renter’s salary to be at least 40 times the monthly rent. If your salary is $40,000, then you should be looking for an apartment in the $1000 range ($40,000  divided by 40 = $1,000). If your salary is too low to show that you can pay the rent on your own, a landlord will accept you with a guarantor. A guarantor must show that he/she can pay for your rent as well as maintain his/her own household, so landlords usually require that a guarantor’s salary be 75 times your monthly rent in addition to your contribution.


Outside of Manhattan, landlords look for a salary that’s 25 or 30 times the monthly rent and they accept a guarantor who has an income that is 50 times the monthly rent.


What are your apartment parameters?

You already identified your three main apartment parameters when you became a member of  Rent-Direct.com: maximum rent, apartment size and location. Now you need to decide which one of these is your  “non-negotiable” need. You’ll have more choices the more flexible you can be about the parameters.


















What the Golden Triangle tells us is:

If your have a fixed maximum price you can pay (and who doesn’t), then you will need to adjust your size or location to find an apartment.


If you must have a certain sized apartment, then you must be willing to pay the price or change location.


If you must have a certain location, then you will have to compromise on size or price.


In other words, if your budget isn’t unlimited, you will have to make some compromises, and you can only compromise on three things, size, price, and location.


Only you can decide which combination is most important to you. If you’re looking with a roommate, be sure to discuss your “non-negotiable” requirements before you start your search. Your Rent-Direct.com membership can be adjusted throughout your search to reflect any change in your requirements. You can also set up multiple search profiles to enable you to look, for example, for a studio apartment for yourself and a two-bedroom to share with a roommate. The key to success is to be flexible with all the areas outside your “non-negotiable” item.

TIP: If the maximum rent must be within a fixed range, you’ll have more apartment choices by being flexible about the size of the apartment or the neighborhoods you’ll consider.


If, on the other hand, you must have an apartment of a certain size, you’ll have more apartment choices by being flexible about the rent maximum and the neighborhoods you’ll consider.


Finally, if you must live in a specific area, you’ll find more available apartments in that neighborhood if you can be flexible about the size of the apartment and on the rent.


That’s it. Those are really the only variables; size, price, and location. If you must have one, then you might have to compromise on the other two.

TIP:  Your Rent-Direct.com membership can be adjusted throughout your search to reflect any change in your requirements.


You can also set up multiple search profiles to enable you to look, for example, for a studio apartment for yourself and a two-bedroom to share with a roommate. The key to success is to be flexible with all the areas outside your “non-negotiable” item.


To set up multiple search profiles, just call Rent-Direct.com’s Customer Support number: 212-807-1414 opt. 4.

TIP:  What about buildings with amenities, such as doormen, pools, recreation rooms, etc. How do they affect the “Golden Triangle”?


If having a doorman is a must have, then all the factors discussed about the Golden Triangle remain the same; you will still have to pick the size, and location that fits your budget.


More and more new buildings have amenities that were all but unheard of just a few years ago. But remember how much you will pay for them. Isn’t the doorman/security issue the most important? Don’t get too caught up in the fantasy of how much fun you will have if your building has a rock climbing wall, a screening room, or billiards tables. You will hardly remember they are there after a few months.

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