Apartment Financial Matters

One of the most important considerations when it comes to finding a new apartment home is finances. How much apartment can you afford? What will a prospective landlord be looking for in terms of income and credit history?

You'll want to start with a budget. There are general guidelines about how much of your take-home income should be allocated toward different expenses that can be helpful in this process:

  • 30% Housing

  • 18% Transportation

  • 16% Food

  • 8% Miscellaneous

  • 5% Clothing

  • 5% Medical

  • 5% Recreation

  • 5% Utilities

  • 4% Savings

  • 4% Other Debts

So, if your monthly income, after taxes, is $3,000, then $1,000 per month in rent would be an appropriate target. Of course, these are not hard and fast rules. Regional costs may vary - average transportation and food costs could be lower in a particular area, allowing for a reasonable shift of those funds toward housing costs. By the same token, you can take personal steps to allow you to allocate a larger percentage of income towards housing - lowering debt costs, saving on recreation or clothing.

A rule of thumb with many apartment communities, when evaluating tenant applications is monthly income that is three times the monthly rent. If you don't quite meet a community's income requirement, a higher security deposit a co-signer might satisfy the landlord.

Most apartment communities also require a security deposit and many will want your last month's rent paid at the time of lease signing, so you'll need to have approximately three months rent on hand when you set out to find your new apartment.

A standard part of the application process is also a credit check. A credit report will show any liens, evictions, wage garnishments and delinquencies. It's a good idea to get a copy of your credit report in advance. It is estimated that 30-50% of all credit reports contain serious errors, so you'll want to correct any errors in advance. The three main credit reporting agencies, from which you can obtain reports, are:

  • Equifax

  • TransUnion

  • Experian

Don't panic if there are some blemishes on your credit. Few people have spotless credit histories, and many apartments will still be willing to lease to you. You can help mitigate a less-than-stellar report by making sure that you are current with all payments at the time of application. Pay off as many small balances as you can before beginning your apartment search can help. Again, a larger deposit or a co-signer may satisfy a potential landlord.

Getting your ducks in a row, before you meet with potential landlords, will go a long way toward improving your chances of getting the lease. Evaluate your income and expenses to get a good idea of what you can afford, pull a credit report and take steps to correct any errors, and do whatever you can to polish up your ratings. You're ahead of the game already!

Apartments in Area:

Columbus Apartment - The Grand Reserve

1 to 3 BDRM apartment in Columbus, GA from $809 to $1229


Columbus Apartment - Ashley Station

1 to 3 BDRM apartment in Columbus, GA from Call for Pricing


Phenix City Apartment - Greenleaf

1 to 3 BDRM apartment in Phenix City, AL from $570 to $840


Columbus Apartment - The Crossings

1 to 3 BDRM apartment in Columbus, GA from $785 to $1145


Columbus Apartment - Stratford Lane

1 to 2 BDRM apartment in Columbus, GA from $449 to $709


Phenix City Apartment - Post Ridge

1 to 3 BDRM apartment in Phenix City, AL from Call for Pricing


Columbus Apartment - Midtown Tower

2 to 3 BDRM apartment in Columbus, GA from $670 to $850


Columbus Apartment - Two Men and A Truck

apartment in Columbus, GA from Call for Pricing


Phenix City Apartment - Westgate Apartments

2 BDRM apartment in Phenix City, GA from $575


Columbus Apartment - Heritage Place Apartments

1 to 2 BDRM apartment in Columbus, GA from $545 to $685


Columbus Apartment - Hardaway Square

2 to 3 BDRM apartment in Columbus, GA from Call for Pricing


Phenix City Apartment - Stadium Place Patio Homes

3 BDRM apartment in Phenix City, AL from $885


Columbus Apartment - Woodville

1 to 3 BDRM apartment in Columbus, GA from $625 to $970


Phenix City Apartment - The Gardens on Stadium

1 to 3 BDRM apartment in Phenix City, AL from Call for Pricing


Columbus Apartment - Milgen Village

1 to 2 BDRM apartment in Columbus, GA from Call for Pricing