The hard and fast rule of many apartment complexes and financial gurus is that your rent or mortgage payments should be no more than around 33% or one-third of your income. If you have a lower than average income, or if you live in a high-priced city, you may not be able to follow this rule. If you need some tips and tricks on how to find and maintain a rental while spending more than the traditional 30% of your monthly income, here are some methods to use.
Figure out what is realistic
If you are in a city with expensive rents, landlords will be less phased at you spending more than the desirable average on rent from your income. However, you must come up with a budget that is realistic to continue for the duration of the lease. Making $6,000 per month and spending $3000 per month on rent can be much different than making $2000 per month and only having $1000 to live off after rent. Make a budget of your realistic needs including debt repayments, food, and necessary expenditures, then determine just how much you can comfortably put towards rent.
Prove prior responsibility to landlords
If you have a good rental history and no credit issues that involve recent late payments, you may be able to convince your landlord to allow you to take on a rental that is more than 30% of your monthly income. If your previous rental was more than the 30% and you were able to handle it with ease, your landlord will feel more relaxed. The best way to prove this is to get a glowing review from your prior landlord. If your landlord also accepts a guarantor, you can find a relative or an institutional guarantor to sign on your lease to put your landlord at ease.
Have rent transferred into a different account
The old saying is, you can't miss what you never had. This can be true of life, and this can be true of rent. Divide up your paycheck and have the total amount of the rent put into another account that has no outside access, such as checks or charge cards. Set this account up for bill pay directly to your landlord or rental company. This will subtract any issues of you overspending and being a little short due to your tight budget.
Have a contingency plan
Life happens, but you can be prepared. Come up with a contingency plan of what to do if you find apartments for rent that accept you, but you suddenly have issues paying. This plan could include having a relative or employer who is on standby to help pay rent, or offering up your home as a temporary vacation rental to make a few extra dollars. Having a contingency plan in writing will keep you focused and properly reactive should you come up short one month. Contact a company like Sterling Realty for more information.