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Moving into your first apartment is exciting, but knowing where to start can quickly get overwhelming. Planning is the key to a smooth move. 

Our team has helped countless people get settled into their first place, so we understand the significance of this moment. We’ve created this checklist to make moving into your first apartment easy.

1. Create a Budget

Moving into your first apartment involves more than just monthly rent. First-time renters without a solid budget might be surprised by hidden costs.

To avoid financial shock, create a detailed budget. Aside from rent, also consider utilities, water, trash, HOA deposits, insurance, pet deposits, and any necessary advances. Knowing your financial limits will help you find a place that suits your lifestyle without breaking the bank.

You can use Google Sheets templates or other free tools like GoodBudget to track and manage your expenses. 

Factor in Deposits and Advances

Most landlords and property management companies require security deposits and advance payments. 

These upfront costs can vary, so inquire about these fees when researching potential apartments. Factor these amounts into your budget to avoid surprises when securing your new place. 

Explore Utility Costs

Research the average costs of utilities in the area. This includes electricity, gas, water, and wifi. Contact local service providers to obtain estimates for these services based on the size and location of your new apartment.

Plan for Miscellaneous Expenses

Moving inevitably comes with unforeseen expenses. Allocate a portion of your budget for miscellaneous costs. This could include packing supplies, cleaning supplies, and any unexpected fees. 

Set a Realistic Monthly Rent Limit

When you look for new places on Zillow, it’s tempting to save only dream apartments. However, to prevent financial issues, you’ll need to set realistic rent limits. 

Related Post: 5 Costly Mistakes to Avoid When Moving to Cincinnati

A general rule of thumb is that your rent payment should be around 30% of your monthly income. If you’re having trouble finding places within your budget, it might be time to look in different neighborhoods or find a roommate. 

2. Research Your Neighborhoods

Explore neighborhoods within your budget, considering safety, proximity to work or school, and amenities.

Research different leasing companies to find one that aligns with your needs. Make a checklist of your priorities, and compare them against each location you’re considering moving to. 

3. Finding the Right Place

Once you know where you want to live and have your budget figured out, you can apply for your new apartment!

Schedule Tours

This is an exciting step in finding your new place. Once you’ve narrowed down potential apartments, schedule tours to get a firsthand feel for each space.   

Pay attention to lighting, storage, and potential maintenance issues. Ask questions about the neighborhood and the leasing terms during your tour to ensure the apartment meets your expectations.

Application Process

After you’ve toured the apartment, start the application process. Be prepared to provide information about your income, and remember that many places may ask for previous housing information. 

You might also expect to pay an application fee when submitting this document. 

Rental Insurance

Protect your belongings and your peace of mind by securing rental insurance. This relatively low-cost investment provides coverage for your personal property in case of unexpected events, such as theft or damage. 

4. Pick the Right Moving Company

Choosing a reliable moving company is crucial for a stress-free relocation. 

Related Post: How to Choose the Right Cincinnati Moving Company

Research Multiple Moving Companies

Begin by researching and gathering information on multiple moving companies.

Explore their websites, read customer reviews, and ask for recommendations from friends or family who have recently moved. Compile a list of potential moving companies that align with your needs and budget.

Request Quotes

Once you’ve done your research, request quotes from moving companies. Nelson Markesbery offers free estimates and video quotes

Be honest about the size of your move, the distance to your new apartment, and any specific services you may require, such as packing or storage. Compare the quotes provided by each company, considering not only the total cost but also the breakdown of services included.

Check for Licensing and Insurance

Ensure that the moving companies on your shortlist are licensed and insured. 

The right credentials ensure you and your things are protected and indicate the company follows industry standards. 

Read Customer Reviews

Reviews give you insight into the experiences of others who have used the moving company’s services.

Look for reviews that highlight the company’s professionalism, punctuality, and the condition of belongings upon arrival. Pay attention to how the company addresses and resolves any issues that may have arisen during the moving process.

Inquire About Equipment and Vehicles

Your moving company should have appropriate equipment and well-maintained vehicles to handle your move efficiently.

Ask about the trucks they use, as well as any specialized equipment for handling fragile or large items

Check for Transparent Communication

Communication is critical for the moving process. Choose a company that uses clear communication from the first time you speak with them. Nelson Markesbery assigns a moving coordinator to each relocation, ensuring the process goes smoothly. 

Responsive communication indicates customer satisfaction and a better overall moving experience.

Get a Written Contract

Once you’ve selected a moving company, ensure all agreements and terms are documented in a written contract. Review the contract thoroughly, including the services provided, the agreed-upon schedule, and the final cost. 

Call Nelson Markesbery For Your Apartment Move 

Moving to your first apartment is an exciting journey that deserves careful planning and consideration. Get a FREE quote, or contact our team at (859) 371-8111 and

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