So how much rent can you really pay? Your family is growing, and you want to ditch the apartment for that 3-bedroom rental home. Your kids could have their own room, and the kitchen, wow! Room to entertain for Super Bowl. (next year) You call the property management company, and find it’s not rented. You get excited. You’re almost there!
Then you find out you don’t make nearly enough money to qualify for the rent. Sad faces all around.
Where did you go wrong? 30% of your income for rent is the basic guideline, right? But is that before or after taxes, does that cost include utilities and rental fees? Kitty is part of the family. Will he cost extra? And you still have that pesky student loan hanging around, the truck payment, Christmas credit card bills….rats.
So how much rent can you really pay?
Life is more than rent
Being rent-strapped is a bummer. Leaving yourself no room to breathe is no fun, and you should take into account what would happen if you get laid off and have to go job hunting for a couple of months. Would your savings be able to cover that?
The best way to figure this out is to look at what you’re spending now.
Biils – These are the things you have to pay. Rent, car payment, student loans, renter’s insurance, gas or commuting costs, credit card payments, cellphone, Internet, food, utilities, trash pickup, rental fees…arg. That stuff comes right off the top of your paycheck.
Entertainment – Netflix counts here. Maybe Amazon Prime, restaurants, movies, you get the idea. You can do some dealing here.
Healthy living – Dentist bills, gym membership, hair cuts, school shoes, tithing to your church. Good stuff, but still money out.
Savings – Investing in your future, saving for a rainy day. Whether it’s a 401K, IRA, or just a traditional savings account, this is a good idea.
So lay it all out and see how things look. You might realize that you could cut back on expensive big screen movies and watch at home in your new rental. Or skip the weekly trips to the sports bar and have your friends over to watch the game, using your bigger kitchen to prepare the fun. Here’s where you can move things around and see just how much you can afford.
Talk to a Property Management Firm
Property Management firms handle rental homes, so they know the money score. They’ll also know what houses are available in your area before anyone else knows, and how much the rent will be.
All County Colorado Springs is happy to go over your finances with you, start the application process, and figure out how much house you can afford comfortably. We will also let you know what rental fees you’ll be looking at, so you won’t have to guess. It’s a good first step.
Then together, we can watch for the perfect rental for your family, and we’ll be ready to pounce on it!
If you want to play around with the numbers, Zillow’s rent affordability calculator (https://www.zillow.com/rent-affordability-calculator) will give you an idea of what you can afford. This will just be an estimate, but it’s a tool that can help.
And remember! All County Colorado Springs is here for you. Call us anytime at: (719) 445-7172 to discuss your rental home needs. Your family could be in that dream home in no time at all!