Moving out is a big step; it can be both exciting and terrifying. The best advice we can give to first time renters is to find an apartment that fits into your budget and don’t be too picky about the quality of living.
Sometimes you’ll get lucky and your first apartment will be a gem, but that usually only happens in the movies. We’re not saying it can’t happen, just don’t be disappointed if it doesn’t. Part of being a first time renter is learning to make do with what you have. That’s the thing about first apartments -- you take the good with the bad because living on your own is awesome.
If you’ve been on your own for several years, what advice would you give to first time renters? 13 people share memories -- both good and bad -- about their first apartment. If you’re apartment hunting for the first time don’t be shocked if it has some (or all) of these qualities.
Cheap rent. “We got this dumpy apartment that saved us money because it only cost $350 per month. We were fine until our downstairs creepy neighbor told us he could hear EVERYTHING going on in our apartment.” -- Lauren G.
No privacy. “Does a dorm room count? I loved that I lived alone, the fact that the carpet was kind of gross was probably the worst of it.” -- Miranda M.
Noise. “My first apartment was on one of the very few bus lines in town. Crime was rampant in the area.” -- Jackie B.
Good location. “My first apartment was small, really small, but it was in a great location close to campus. I moved to a new city to attend college so my parents wanted me to live in a safe, a.k.a. student, neighborhood.” -- Nick B.
No space. “My room was so small, I had to build the bed inside the room. On the floor plan, it wasn’t even a bedroom. It was called the breakfast nook.”
A crazy neighbor. “We had a crazy neighbor who moved back home after getting out of jail and threatened to kill us on a regular basis so we had to move. He sadly murdered the person who lived there right after us.” -- Michelle S.
Roommates. “Four women in a three-bedroom apartment meant we had a place to host our friends. We paid $200 each a month, much less than the dorm.” -- Teresa M.
Freedom. “I just moved into my first apartment by myself (without roommates). The best is having my own privacy, decorating however I want to and not having to worry about my stuff lying around. But I miss my washer and dryer.” -- Athena L.
A weird landlord. “The landlord literally tried to kill me. Was upset I reported the building for locking me out, changing my key, and not exterminating cockroaches. He turned on my gas without telling me while I was inside. I had him arrested.” -- Michelle D.
A nosey neighbor. “Neighbors can really make or break an apartment. I had a neighbor who literally sat outside my door and when I would come home late ask me where I had been. Like it was any of her business.” -- Sam R.
Cleaning issues. “My apartment had fleas -- so that was awesome!” -- Mark G.
Over friendly neighbors. “Our next door neighbor liked to put on a ‘show’ every night at 3 a.m. if you know what I mean.”
Independence. “Best thing about my first apartment: It was the first time I lived on my own. I learned to embrace my ‘alone time’ and felt so gratified when I signed my first rent check.” -- Lindsey I.
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Consumer Education Services, Inc. empowers people to overcome their financial challenges and lead financially-healthy lives.
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