Quick Guide: How to Choose an Apartment


Whether you’re moving into your first apartment, or if you’ve already lived in a few, choosing the right apartment is important. Your apartment will be your living space where you’ll cook, entertain, and sleep. In fact, you are likely to spend more than a third of your time at home if you include your sleeping hours. In any case, you’ll want to select an apartment that works for you. This means finding an apartment that falls within your budget, has the features you need, and is in a location that is convenient for you. With all of that to consider, here is a quick guide to choosing the right apartment for you.

Do Your Research

With most things, it’s best to do your research first, before you make any moves. Going into something like choosing an apartment blind isn’t usually a good idea. Instead, you can scout out places online just as I did when I found my apartment at Alphington from Yarrabend, browse through photos, read reviews, and more. With the internet at your fingertips, you can learn a lot before you ever even visit an apartment.

Make a List of Your Priorities and Stick with Them

Next, make a detailed list of your budget and priorities. You may want to divide your priorities into two separate lists, soft priorities and hard ones. Soft priorities will be features you’d like, and hard priorities will be non-negotiable. Also, make sure that you calculate and set a budget that you can afford to pay every month, so you don’t need to scramble at the end of each month to pay.

Get Opinions

You can always get more than one opinion. You may want to bring someone along with you to check out the apartments, especially if you’ll be living there with them. Solo apartment searching can be effective, but it’s more fun with company and you can get a second, or even a third, opinion onsite.

Visit the Apartments

Once you’ve contacted a few landlords, you should set up a viewing or go to an open house. Whether you’re buying or not, this is an important step to finding the right apartment for you. Take care to set up a look at a time and date that works for you. If you’re viewing the apartment with a friend, roommate, significant other, or family member, you’ll want to coordinate with them as well.

Make a Decision

Finally, once you’ve viewed the prospective apartments, you can go about choosing the right one. Make sure to weigh in important details including-

  • Square footage and functional space- Is it spacious enough? Will you have enough room for your belongings, activities, individuals living with you, etc.?
  • Amenities- Does the apartment have everything you need?
  • Distance- Is the apartment located close enough to work, school, etc.?
  • Style- Does the style of the apartment suit you? If you’re renting, this is very important because you won’t be able to paint walls, make upgrades, etc. in most cases.
  • Budget- Makes sure you can comfortably afford the apartment of your choosing.

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