In today’s article, we’ll take a look at some tips on renting a home in Chicago that you should consider when renting your next home in Chicago.
As property values plummeted over the latter part of the 2000’s, many people began to turn to renting. There are plenty of reasons to rent as opposed to purchasing a home, including maintenance costs, desire to live in a densely populated part of Chicago IL, or the desire to live in a smaller space.
Tips on Renting a Home in Chicago
Should I Rent From A Private Owner vs. Management Company?
There are advantages and disadvantages to renting from a management company.
Oftentimes, a management company will quickly make repairs, and be responsive to tenant complaints. Forward-thinking companies may offer rent payment, maintenance and repairs requests, and answers to other questions on their website. Property management companies in Chicago are usually strict about who they’re willing to rent to. They’re more likely to run credit checks, and require certain scores to consider a tenant. Many property management companies are also reluctant or outright refuse to rent to tenants with pets.
Also with property management companies, they tend to charge top of the market rents because they know what the “going rate” is.
Private owners are often more flexible about who they’ll rent to. Many are renting homes that they own in their retirement account, biding time until they retire, so they’re simply looking for an occupant. If you have credit difficulties or have a dog or cat, it might be best to find a private owner.
Private owners often may rent a house at a little bit lower price than a property management company because they don’t want to hassle with finding tenants or they simply may not know the local Chicago IL rental housing prices well.
In the end, both private property owners and local property management companies have to follow the same landlord-tenant laws in IL so the experience with either one should be fundamentally the same.
Be Realistic with Your Budget
Most financial experts agree that you should spend no more than 30% of your total net income on housing costs. If you’re younger, you may want to budget more than 30%, as entry-level salaries are low, and the rental market is booming, leading to higher costs.
Take Pictures of Everything
After renting your next home in Chicago, before assuming the lease, it’s extremely important to take photographs of every inch of the house or apartment. This can be essential to recovering your security deposit at the end of your lease. Some uncouth landlords will use your security deposit to pay for broken items or scuffed floors that existed before you moved in.
Also, when you take pictures of everything it’ll indicate to the landlord that you’re a responsible tenant and build that trust with you as a tenant.
Get Renter’s Insurance
Renter’s insurance protects your belongings from theft and other catastrophic losses. In some states, landlord’s rights trump tenant’s rights, and if something goes missing or damaged in your rental unit, you’ll be responsible.
By purchasing renter’s insurance, your belongings will be protected. Renter’s insurance is extremely affordable, often costing less than $200 a year… which is a no-brainer.
If you’re looking for renters insurance in Chicago IL just pick up your phone book and call any reputable insurance agent (the same type of insurance agents who could sell you auto insurance tend to offer renters insurance too) or head online and do a quick Google search for “Chicago IL insurance agents” and you’ll find a whole list of agents to choose from.
By being very details oriented during your search and moving into your new apartment or rental house, you can ensure a pleasant experience for both you and your landlord! For other tips on renting a Chicago IL home feel free to email us directly or give us a call and we can provide more information and free guides to help you find a great local house to rent… even a Chicago rent to own house list in case your main goal really to purchase a house rather than rent… but your current financial state won’t let you get a home loan (we can help!).
Consider A Chicago Rent to Own Home
The tips on renting a house in Chicago above are quick and simple and apply to a rent to own house as well.
But if your goal is really to own your own house here locally in Chicago… but your financial situation won’t let you qualify for a loan (bankruptcy recently, foreclosure recently, your income not high enough yet, etc.) then renting to own a home may be an option for you.
If that’s you… then start on this website by learning about the rent to own process and even get on our Local Rent To Own / Lease Option House list to see the available rent to own homes in Chicago.
For Other Tips On Renting A Chicago Home
If you have any questions at all don’t hesitate to contact us anytime. We’re here to help! We can connect you with reputable property management companies, provide you free resources as a tenant here in IL that show you your rights, and more! Or, if you do want to learn more about renting to own a local house… excellent! We’ll walk you through the process and see if it’s a good fit for you!