Deciding to rent an apartment or house might be a better alternative when you’re still saving to buy a house. But how much rent you pay will play a major factor in how much money you can continue saving along with your current income. While your credit history will always be evaluated in determining if you can rent at all, can you negotiate your rent before you move in?
While not impossible, it’s much easier to negotiate a lower rent after you’ve lived in a rental for a while.
Present Your Landlord with Evidence of Lower Rent Nearby
With the ability to research rents online (particularly through places like Zillow), you can print out information about nearby neighborhoods having lower rent than you’re paying. Take those documents to your landlord and show him or her the proof when negotiating on a rental lease. While other factors can pertain to a higher rent, having documented evidence is a major first step in proving your case.
Present Evidence of Your Good Rental Track Record
Even if you’re moving to a new rental unit, provide documented proof and contact information to prove you were a good renter. You already have to prove your credit history, though showing a track record of paying your rent on time is just as important. Also, be sure to keep a conscientious record of properly following all the rules, including keeping things clean and managing noise ordinances. Your new landlord can contact your prior landlord to find this out.
Create a Symbiotic Relationship During the Negotiation
If a rental manager is going to consider lowering your rent, they expect you’ll do something in return for the favor. In that regard, you might want to consider volunteering in the neighborhood to do yard work, or even holding a party for tenants in an apartment. A real standout is offering to do referrals if the manager is having a challenging time filling vacancies. For the latter, a discounted rent is a slight form of commission for gaining new renters.
Proving Your Track Record Through Family and Friends
Sometimes you need to have members of your family or friends vouch for your character and financial history. Members of your family with better credit can also help in giving you financial backup to show a sense of reliability. And while a prior landlord can provide a good track record of you following rental rules, family and friends can help give more extensive details about you that can convince a current landlord to give you a rent break.