It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Dorm rooms are filling up with eager students and young adults are moving into their very first apartments.
It’s pretty tempting to head straight to Target and fill up a cart (or two) with all the things you so desperately want need. But not so fast! You should adopt a habit of smart shopping, buying as many essentials as you can for just a buck at your local discount chain.
The Section 8 program aims to help people with one of the most basic of human needs: shelter. As rent prices continue to rise, programs like this can be helpful to individuals and families that just can’t seem to make ends meet.
Big-city living isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Not only will you find plenty of small-town charm if you live in a less populated town; you’ll also save money. Apartment Guide found America’s most affordable cities — the top 10 cities with the least expensive median rent prices — and we dug up a few cool facts about these hidden gems as well.
Named after the city in Italy, the northwestern Alabama town of Florence not only boasts the cheapest rent in the nation; it’s also the home of the University of North Alabama. Music lovers are in luck; artists from all over the country come to Florence each summer for the W.C. Handy Music Festival. It originally focused on blues and jazz, but now includes rock, gospel, country and more.
There’s no way around it – you need extra cash. While selling blood plasma may have crossed your mind, there are easier ways to pad your bank account. Have you thought about selling stuff that you no longer want or need online?
From furniture to textbooks and even the most random knick knacks, you’d be surprised what people are willing to pay for the stuff you’ve long neglected. The hard part may be determining the best vehicle for getting your stuff into a buyer’s hands. Craigslist and eBay are two notoriously popular options, but which one is right for you? Apartment Guide explains the good and the bad of each.
Our recent budget survey found that a majority of people who are moving opt to do the work themselves — without hiring a moving company – and they are spending less than $1,000 on the entire move. One in three renters plan to spend more on entertainment at home in their apartments this year, however. (Maybe that’s where the moving money is going?)
On that subject, LearnVest notes that the average American spends over $900 a year on cable. You might consider a less-expensive option to get access to your favorite shows, like HuluPlus or Netflix, instead.
Here are a few easy, fairly painless ways you can get a new saving plan started in 2014!
Lose the “latte factor”
Financial expert David Bach, author of the best-selling Finish Rich books, advises everyone to determine their “latte factor.” Your personal “latte factor” refers to the small, seemingly insignificant items you purchase on a regular basis, such as a daily coffee from Starbucks. These items may have small price tags, but when purchased periodically they really add up. You could buy café lattes five days at $3.50 a pop, or you could choose to save that money — which adds up to over $900 a year — in an interest-bearing account. Saving money is the same thing as making money, so it’s a good idea to look at where you’re bleeding extra cash — such as daily coffees, cigarettes, unused gym memberships, etc. — to consider what you might be able to cut out.
If your used clothing is in good shape, consider selling a few items to make some extra cash.
It’s practically inevitable: Live in an apartment for a while, and your rent is likely to go up at some point. And hey, we feel your pain. No one likes to pay more per month for the same thing. But c’est la vie, life isn’t fair, you can’t always get what you want, etc.
The National Association of Realtors predicts average apartment rates will rise 4.3 percent in 2014. That could sting a little – unless you’re prepared to budget for a rent hike. We’ve got some ideas to adjust your spending habits so it won’t hurt as much to give your landlord a little extra money every month.
The new trend in long-term renting serves many apartment dwellers well. Check out the economics behind the phenomenon here.
If you see yourself living in your apartment for the foreseeable future, you are not alone. Chances are, you may fall into a category labeled “perma-renter.”
For perma-renters, apartment living isn’t a temporary situation; it’s a preferred way of life.
The number of perma-renters is on the rise. In the wake of the recession, the housing bust and a stagnant job market, perma-renters have no interest in becoming homeowners. They’re content to stay put, seeing apartment life as a more convenient and affordable alternative to buying a home.
Here’s a look at some of the economic factors helping to create the current perma-renter boom.