When it comes to renting an apartment, most people think about the space itself – how many bedrooms, is it pet friendly, is there a laundry? While these factors are certainly important, you first want to narrow down where you want to live so you can start your search. To help you find the perfect spot, we’re looking at how to choose the right neighborhood to rent an apartment.
Choosing a Neighborhood: Renting Vs. Buying
First, choosing a neighborhood when you’re renting is much easier than when you’re buying a home. While some tenants stay for many years, others don’t always live in an apartment for an extended period of time, so you can base your decision on your current needs, and then when your needs change, you can move on. This is unlike buying a home when you have to consider what you’ll need in the future. For example, if you don’t have children, but would like to someday, nearby schools probably won’t affect your decision of where to rent an apartment. On the other hand, when you’re buying a home, you are buying what you need now and what you want your life to look like in several years, so school districts may play a very important role in your choice.
Consider Your “Must-Haves” in a Neighborhood
First, you need to set your “must-haves” in a neighborhood or area. These are usually just two or three items that you can’t do without to maintain the quality of life you want. This could include:
- Proximity to your job so you don’t have a long commute;
- Near public transportation;
- Bike or pedestrian friendly;
- Walking distance to a grocery store;
Once you determine the factors you can’t negotiate on, look at neighborhoods that meet those criteria, then start your “nice to have” list. These are, as the name suggests, elements to a neighborhood that you want but aren’t your highest priority. This could include:
- Close to outdoor recreation and green spaces;
- Near trendy restaurants and bars;
- Living in a diverse area with a lot of culture;
By knowing what you need and want, you can decide what you might have to sacrifice in order to get everything you need.
Research Your Neighborhoods
Break out the map and start looking at areas that meet your “must-haves.” Then, dig a little deeper and see, within that radius, the areas that also meet your “nice to haves.” By this point, you should have a pretty good idea of neighborhoods that may meet your needs, but a map can only tell you so much. Visit the areas you’re considering at different times during the day to get a better feel for the neighborhood and get information like:
- What is traffic like?
- Is it too noisy or too quiet?
- Are amenities nearby?
Find an Apartment Building
While you are looking around at neighborhoods, when you see areas you’re comfortable with, take note of the apartment buildings in the area. You’ll get a more accurate view of how they look and the surrounding neighborhood when you’re in person compared to going back and looking online. Take pictures or write down building names and locations, then you can research individual buildings and see if they have the amenities, size, and other features you’re looking for. By starting with the neighborhood and working your way down to the apartment, you’re likely to be more satisfied with your lifestyle.
Rent an Apartment in Uptown Minneapolis
If you are looking to be near trendy restaurants and the beautiful scenery of Bde Maka Ska while living in a well-maintained historic building, our apartments for rent in Uptown Minneapolis are perfect for what you need. Reach out to us at 952-927-4144 or fill out the form below to learn more about what we have available and schedule a tour.