When moving long distance, it’s not always feasible to visit your new city in advance to scope out potential apartments. Relocation fees can add up quickly, so purchasing an extra plane ticket and overnight hotel stays can be too much. However, not all is lost. It is possible to find a place to call home remotely.
Things to think about:
- Research – Firstly, research your new city. This is especially important if you do not know much about where you’ll be living. Obviously, if you have friends in the area, start with them. If you don’t, the Internet needs to become your temporary best friend. Use your computer to visit Chamber of Commerce websites, look up crime data, research school info and peruse city message boards. City-Data forum is a good place to start. Once you have a feel for different areas, start looking for apartments in your price range. Use Google Streetview to further explore apartment buildings and the surrounding areas. Once you’ve come up with satisfactory options, call for more information.
- Ask the Right Questions – Since you can’t rely on your own senses, you need to thoroughly question your potential landlord or broker. Besides all of the normal apartment questions, you need to also inquire about things that don’t show up in pictures, like noise.
- If You Aren’t 100% Comfortable – Try to avoid signing a lease, and wait until you can see the apartment in person. If this isn’t possible, think about finding a short-term sublet. Throw your belongings in storage and rent a furnished apartment for a month or two. This way, you’ll get a feel for the city, and you can confidently find a more permanent spot on your own time.
Have you rented an apartment from out-of-state? Let us know!