According to Realtor Jay Morrison: How to Rent An Apartment the Smart Way


Jay Morrison
VIBE Vixen: What are the three biggest mistakes people make when looking for an apartment?
Jay Morrison: Not having their lease reviewed by an attorney. Most people think it’s not really worth it. It’s a few hundred bucks for an attorney but it’s totally worth it. You want to get professionals that do this for a living. The apartment complex’s attorneys looked at the lease when they drafted it, so why wouldn’t you have an attorney look at your lease.

People don’t negotiate enough. People take the fact that the month and a half security or the first month’s rent has to be that when everything’s up for negotiation. You can ask for just one month’s security if that’s what you want to do. You can leverage the fact that your money has value and your tenancy has value. You can try to get a better deal on an apartment if you have leverage.

Last one: rushing. Most people are in a rush when looking for an apartment and  don’t take their time and do the due dilegence to find the most bang for their buck. Most times people want to get in one place and out the other and just get the first thing smoking.

How do you know when your being gipped by a real estate agent?
Your gut. If the energy doesn’t feel right, that’s not the person for you. Your agent should be transparent and authentic, and you want someone that generally cares about finding you the home of your choice. You gotta get with people that actually care about you as a client and your best interest.

What’s the best utilities to have in your rental agreement?
It depends. Electric off top. If you’re in a three-bedroom apartment and you’re sharing it with five people, you’re going to be running water like crazy. You might want to make water a priority. It all depends on your circumstances. But if you’re a bachelor or single person, something else might be a priority–maintenance fees, parking, fees for a gym. If you’re going to be cramming up in a large rental situation, then you want to do things like water and electric.