Dallas Apartment Guide

Size Matters: How Much Apartment Square Footage Do I Need?

There are a number of factors to consider when deciding which Dallas apartment is right for you. For instance, do you need a place that’s pet-friendly? Are there certain amenities that are “must-haves”, like a fitness center or free parking?

Then there’s the question of size. You don’t want to end up locked into a lease only to find out the place you’ve chosen doesn’t have nearly enough space. On the other hand, you also don’t want to be paying more for a place that’s too big for your needs. Our Dallas apartment locators explain how to determine the ideal square footage below.

 

Average Apartment Sizes

Knowing what the average apartment measures in at can provide a good foundation. Generally speaking, the average studio apartment is about 500 square feet. According to Rent.com, here are a few more baseline calculations:

  • 1-bedroom: 750 square feet
  • 2-bedroom: 1075 square feet
  • 3-bedroom: 1300 square feet

 

Calculating Square Footage

You can determine the exact square footage of a space by multiplying its width by its length. This practice can become challenging, however, because not all apartments feature rooms that are neatly shaped into a square or rectangle. If you’re looking at a place that has outcroppings, for instance, you can calculate the overall size by sectioning off squares or rectangles and then adding the square footage of each together.

Of course, if you’re working with an apartment locator, like someone from our team, you can simply ask them to provide you with the exact measurement. This makes things much easier for you!

 

How Much Square Footage Do I Need?

There’s no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as it will ultimately depend on how much space you personally prefer. It’ll also depend on how many people will be living there. In general, the minimum amount of space needed per person is 200 square feet. Again, this is the bare minimum. In reality, a space of around 400 square feet per person would be much more comfortable.

There are additional factors to consider as well when determining how much room you’ll need in your apartment. For instance:

  • If you work from home, would a studio with a dedicated office space work? Or, do you need a separate room with a door?
  • Do you entertain frequently? If so, a separate dining area or larger living area might be best.
  • Do you require storage space for bigger items such as a bike?
  • How big is your furniture? (For reference, a king size bed needs at least 169 square feet.)

You’ll also want to weigh your budgetary needs as well. Bigger apartments tend to cost more in terms of utilities, like heat and electricity. You’ll want to be sure you’ve got enough to comfortably cover these added expenses before jumping into a long-term lease.

 

Still not sure how much square footage is right for you? Don’t sweat it. Our Dallas apartment experts can match you with the perfect amount of space for your needs. Best of all, it won’t cost you a penny to work with us! Get in touch today to learn more or get started.

November 20, 2020 / by / in ,
5 Things to Know About Living in Dallas

 

As the largest inland metropolitan area in the entire country, Dallas is as diverse as it is massive. If you’re new to the area, there are a lot of things you probably don’t know about “The Big D,” many of which could make living here even better. To get the inside scoop, we asked our expert Dallas apartment locators to list the top five facts about living in this incredible city. Here’s what they had to say.

 

It can be pricey…unless you have connections.

The cost of living in Dallas is around 7.6% higher than the national average – especially when you figure in other expenses, such as groceries and utilities. Thankfully, you’ve come to the right place. Our team has connections with property managers in some of the most exclusive Dallas apartment communities and can match you with a place that suits your needs, preferences and your budget. Best of all, it won’t cost you a penny to work with us.

 

Getting from here to there is super easy.

The DFW area may be large in size, but getting where you need to go is easier than you may think. In fact, no matter what neighborhood you choose to lay down some roots, there are a variety of ways to get around. The DART (Dallas Area Rapid Transit) system, for example, runs from o’dark thirty (a.k.a. 5 a.m.) through midnight and the fare is cheap. There are also a ton of ride-share options, and most of the neighborhoods rank very high on the walkability scale.

 

It’s not as “big city” as you may think.

The downtown Dallas skyline may be iconic, but there’s a lot more to this area than highways and high-rises. In fact, natural resources and recreational opportunities abound all throughout DFW and the surrounding communities. Grab a paddleboard and head over to White Rock Lake, enjoy a bike ride along the Katy Trail or spend the day hiking through one of the many nature preserves. With beautiful weather year-round, Dallas is the perfect place for someone who loves the great outdoors.

 

It’s a food lover’s paradise.

They say everything’s bigger in TX, and when it comes to appetites, this is certainly the case. Regardless of which neighborhood you choose to live in, you’re sure to be surrounded by your pick of cafes, restaurants, clubs and bars. And if you can’t find a place to eat that satiates your taste buds, just look to the plethora of food trucks that always seem to be popping up around town. From fancy rooftop dining to casual comfort food, one thing’s for sure – you’ll never go hungry!

 

If you like free stuff, you’ll love Dallas.

One of the nicest things about living in Dallas is the access it provides to so many free events and activities. Klyde Warren Park, for example, provides a full calendar of complementary stuff to do, from yoga and Zumba classes to outdoor movies and more. Jump on the free McKinney Ave Trolley and explore the Uptown area. Or, mosey over to the Arts District to visit one of the many free museums, including the Dallas Museum of Art, which is one of the largest in the country. If you’re on a budget, this city’s got you covered.

 

What are you waiting for? Get in touch today. We can help make your dream of living in Dallas a reality!

November 3, 2020 / by / in , , ,
Which Lease is Right for You? The Pros and Cons of Month-to-Month Rental Agreements

 

There are a lot of choices to be made when choosing a Dallas apartment. Which neighborhood should you select? What amenities do you consider must-haves? And – one of the most important ones – what kind of lease should you sign?

While many landlords and property managers require a lease of at least one year, there are some who are ok with month-to-month arrangements. If this is an option for you, but you’re not sure whether it’s worth pursuing, here are a few pros and cons to consider that could make your decision a little easier.

 

Pros

 

Flexibility – Signing a month-to-month rental agreement can offer a greater degree of flexibility, because you’re not locking yourself into a long-term lease. This is an ideal option for someone who is unfamiliar with the area, such as a person who is relocating from another city or state. A monthly tenancy allows you to test the waters and see if the location is really a good fit for your needs.

You also don’t have to worry about the hefty fees and penalties that come with breaking a lease. When you’re ready to move, all you need to do is provide the agreed upon amount of notice (typically 30 to 60 days) and you’re free to go.

 

Ability to Convert – Once you’re settled in, should you determine you’re happy with the area and the amenities of your current apartment, most landlords are happy to extend the option of signing a new, longer-term lease agreement. And since you’re already an established renter, you may even be able to negotiate a better rate because they already know your history. This isn’t always an option for someone who is brand new signing onto a one or two-year lease, as both parties are unfamiliar with one another.

 

Cons

 

More Expensive – The goal of landlords and property managers is to keep as many units occupied as possible. Shorter-term rental arrangements are much riskier in this respect, and therefore often come at higher cost. Additionally, month-to-month leases can be modified with just a 30-day notice. So, your rent could technically be increased at any time. Locking into a long-term lease prevents this.

 

Riskier – Let’s be honest. Moving sucks. Month-to-month arrangements do not protect you against having to find a new place at any point in the not-so-distant future. Again, all the landlord is required to do is provide appropriate notice. What happens if you fall in love with your apartment and its location, but six months down the road, your landlord sends you a notice that you have 30 days to vacate? This is a risk you take when you choose monthly tenancy.

 

As you can see, month-to-month leases have benefits as well as downsides. It’s important that you understand and carefully consider these things when deciding which path to take. If you’ve still got questions or could use a little guidance, just give us a call at (214) 999-1161 or shoot us an email to info@dallasapartmentlocators.co. Our apartment experts would be more than happy to help!

September 28, 2020 / by / in ,
Virtual Apartment Hunting – 5 Questions to Ask When Evaluating an Apartment Over the Phone

 

If there’s one thing we’ve learned from these past several months, it’s that just about anything can be done virtually if you’re thoughtful and creative enough. Believe it or not, this includes finding an apartment. Thankfully, tools like live video streaming technology have made it incredibly easy and convenient to get a good feel for what an apartment is like without ever having to physically step foot inside. That said, there are also a few things you should ask over the phone to help seal the deal. Here are five important questions that can make it easier to find the perfect Dallas apartment.

 

How much?

First and foremost, you want to know whether or not your budget is sufficient for the Dallas apartment you’re considering. It’s not worth continuing the conversation if the rent is way out of your price range. You should also ask what’s expected in terms of fees and other upfront costs. For instance, you’ll need to know if you’ll be required to come up with first month’s rent and a security deposit so you can plan accordingly.

 

When?

Many people have the misconception that apartments are just sitting empty, waiting to be rented. While it’s true we have a pretty impressive inventory of available Dallas apartments, that doesn’t necessarily mean the one you’ve got your eye on will be ready for your target move-in date. Unless you’ve got some flexibility, this takes planning and coordination.

 

What’s included?

Beyond the number of bedrooms and layout (which you should have seen in your virtual tour), it’s a good idea to find out what kind of amenities come with the property. If you’ve read any of our previous blogs, you’ll hopefully have followed our advice and made a list of the perks you’d like to have in an apartment and the things you absolutely can’t live without. Finding out right away how many items on your list match up with each apartment you’re inquiring about can help you narrow down your options.

 

Am I qualified?

Some Dallas apartment communities have certain criteria that must be met in order for a tenant to be eligible to live there. For instance, you may be required to have a monthly income that is at least 3x the amount of the rent. In most cases, you must have a clean criminal background and cannot have been previously evicted from another apartment. Again, knowing what these qualifications are right away will save you time and money.

 

Why do the current residents love it?

Want to know what makes a particular apartment and/or community so special? Ask this question. It’s the best way to get a picture of what it’s like to actually live in a particular place. Maybe it’s the proximity to nearby walking trails, or the awesome social atmosphere. Perhaps it’s got one of the most sought after rooftop pools around, or views of the city that can’t be beat. The answers to this question will tell you far more than you’ll learn by driving by or taking an online tour.

 

Ready to start your virtual apartment search? Have more questions to ask than the ones listed above? That’s what we’re here for! Reach out today and let’s chat!

August 26, 2020 / by / in ,
How to Hire a Moving Company in 5 Simple Steps

When you’re planning a move, you’ve got a lot to think about. Even more so if you’re hiring a moving company. According to the BBB, over 5,700 complaints about movers and moving companies were filed in 2019 alone. Topping the list of complaints were damaged or missing items, invoices that were higher than estimated and late deliveries. Moving can be stressful enough without having to worry about whether your belongings will make it to your new place safely and without incident. The following steps should help make the entire process go much more smoothly.

 

Get referrals.

If possible, ask for personal referrals from people you know and trust who have already used a moving company and can recommend their services with confidence. Ask friends, family members, coworkers or fellow students. Post something on social media. If you’re working with a realtor or apartment locator, ask if there’s a particular company they recommend. If you can’t get a personal referral, at least take the time to check online reviews and references.

 

Make sure they’re licensed and insured.

A reputable moving company will have certain verifiable credentials. In particular, they will be licensed by the U.S. DOT as well as adequate insurance coverage. This provides some peace of mind that the company is trustworthy enough to handle your belongings with care. Insurance is especially important, as even the most experienced movers can sometimes lose or break an item. Should that happen, you’ll want to at least be compensated for your loss.

 

Get multiple quotes.

You don’t have to settle for the first estimate that comes along. To the contrary, you should try to obtain at least three separate quotes from different movers. Doing so will give you more flexibility and control over your costs. This is an especially important step if you’re working on a budget.

 

Watch for red flags.

As you interact with various moving companies, be mindful of how they handle your requests. Are they courteous and professional? Can they confidently answer all of your questions? Are they forthcoming with pricing? One thing in particular to watch for is whether or not they are requesting money upfront. If a mover seems particularly eager to collect a cash deposit from you in advance of your move, it could be a serious red flag.

 

Inquire about professional accreditations.

Being professionally accredited by an industry association may not necessarily be a deal-breaker, but it could be a positive sign of a company’s quality of work and trustworthiness. That’s because most reputable trade organizations thoroughly vet moving companies before approving their membership or issuing credentials. One of the most popular accreditors to look for is the American Moving and Storage Association.

Choosing a company or crew to move your belongings to your new home or apartment isn’t an easy decision. The tips above should help you narrow your options and select a mover that will get the job done properly.

 

Not sure where to begin? Still looking for the perfect Dallas apartment? Give us a jingle. We’re here to help!

July 22, 2020 / by / in ,
7 Reasons Walkability is a Must for Dallas Renters

There are a lot of awesome things about living in the DFW area, but one of the biggest benefits is the area’s walkability. For the unfamiliar, this term refers to how easy and convenient it is to get around a particular neighborhood on foot, and Dallas certainly doesn’t disappoint. Still not convinced? Here are seven reasons why walkability should be at the top of your list when touring Dallas apartments for rent.

 

Grabbing groceries on the fly is super easy.

Running low on coffee creamer? Forget that jar of salsa you need for tonight’s dinner? Don’t sweat it! When your Dallas apartment is located in a walkable neighborhood, running out to quickly grab whatever you need whenever you need it is a breeze. And since you can shop on the fly, you don’t have to worry about those long, boring and time-consuming major shopping trips.

 

You’ll save a lot of money.

When you don’t need a vehicle to get from point A to point B and back again, you’ll cut out expenses like gas, insurance, parking and repairs. This will free up some serious cash to be able to splurge on a vacation, buy that big-ticket item you’ve been eying, or better yet – move into a bigger, better and more luxurious Dallas apartment.

 

Dinner and drinks have never been easier.

Want to meet up with friends for cocktails after work? Don’t feel like cooking tonight? No problem. The walkable neighborhoods in Dallas are chockfull of great restaurants, bars, cafes and clubs. Eat out somewhere that’s literally steps from your front door, or grab takeout without having to pay a delivery fee. Sweet!

 

You’ll be safer.

Drinking and driving is never cool. If you live in a neighborhood that is walkable, you can indulge in your favorite adult beverages without having to worry about arranging a ride, picking a designated driver or worse – being tempted to get behind the wheel after you’ve had a few. So, go ahead. Order another round. You deserve it!

 

It’s better for the environment (and your body).

We all need to do our part to help make our world a safer and cleaner place, and ditching your vehicle in favor of your tennis shoes is a great way to contribute. What’s more, walking more isn’t just good for the environment. It’s also a much healthier option for your body. Do good, feel good – what’s not to love?

 

It’s much more convenient.

Who wants to waste time sitting in traffic or circling the block trying to find a place to park? In a walkable neighborhood, you don’t have to worry about these daily hassles. You’ll save time and enjoy less stress all around.

 

You’ll get to know your neighbors.

Last but not least, living in a walkable neighborhood gives you the opportunity to get out there and interact with your fellow Dallasites. In an increasingly digital world, it’s nice to be able to make human connections for a change.

Want to know which Dallas neighborhoods are the most walkable? Check out this walk scorer or better yet – get in touch. Our experts have the inside scoop!

July 3, 2020 / by / in , ,
Relocating to Dallas from Out-of-State? Here’s What to Do with Your Car

Moving is a pain in the butt as it is. Having to relocate to an entirely different state makes it that much more complicated. Among the logistics you must figure out is what to do with your car. Some places are more vehicle-friendly than others, and of course, there’s the question of where to park. Thankfully, at Dallas Apartment Locators, we specialize in relocations, so we’re intimately familiar with the ins and outs of moving from another state.

 

If you’re planning a move to the Dallas area soon and you’re unsure what to do with your vehicle, here are some of your options.

 

Sell It

One simple solution to this dilemma is to just sell your vehicle prior to your move. Of course, if you’ve ever sold a car before, you already know that this can be easier said than done. Still, it may be worth it to cut ties now, so you don’t have the hassle of dealing with it after you move.

 

Living without a vehicle is perfectly doable, especially in Dallas, since clean, safe and affordable public transportation is readily available in almost every neighborhood. Plus, you could make a little extra money to upgrade your furnishings or stash away for emergencies.

 

A word to the wise, though – if you’re going to sell your car, be sure to put it on the market as soon as possible. You never know how long it might take to close the deal, and you don’t want any added stress as it gets closer to moving time.

 

Ship It / Drive It

If you’re not ready to say goodbye to your vehicle, or you can’t afford to get out of the lease or contract you’re currently in, moving with your car is also an option. Of course, that then leaves you with the question of how to get your vehicle from point A to point B. The most obvious way is to drive it there, either by doing so yourself or asking someone else to drive it there for you.

 

Another option you may not have thought about is paying to have it shipped from your current location to your new digs. This is a great option for when you don’t want to put extra miles on your vehicle, such as with a lease, which often limits your mileage and results in a fee if you go over. It’s also a great choice for those who are simply way too stressed to have to deal with moving their vehicle on their own.

 

There are a lot of different vehicle shipping companies available online. Get some quotes and remember to give yourself enough time. If you wait too long, they may not be able to accommodate your vehicle.

 

If you do decide to ship, be sure to remove all personal items from your vehicle beforehand and purchase insurance from the shipping company to cover any potential damages.

 

And, of course, contact your new Dallas apartment to determine what your options are as far as parking and/or storage of your vehicle once it arrives.

 

Still haven’t picked a place yet? We’ve got Dallas apartments to suit every vehicle situation, including those in the heart of public transit as well as those with ample secure parking options. Get in touch today to learn more!

July 3, 2020 / by / in ,
Moving On Up – How to Snag a Dallas Luxury Apartment, Even if You’re on a Budget

The DFW area certainly has its fair share of neighborhoods, and as you’re probably already aware, some are more pricy than others. Living in a more expensive area can be great for young and up-and-comers, especially in terms of night-life and career opportunities. But renting a luxury apartment in Dallas when you’re on a budget can be quite challenging. Thankfully, it’s still doable. Our seasoned Dallas apartment locators offer some helpful tips below.

 

Revisit your budget.

The first tip for being able to afford a more expensive Dallas apartment is to start living a little below, or at least within your means. And that requires a solid budget. Write down all of your monthly expenses and identify areas where you might be able to cut back. For instance, simple things like cancelling a subscription or making coffee at home instead of stopping at the café every morning could free up additional cash that you could put toward a higher rent.

 

Put on your negotiation hat.

What many people don’t realize is that the costs of many of the services we pay for on a monthly basis are not necessarily set in stone. Sure, some are straightforward, like the electric bill. But others, like your mobile phone, internet or cable bill, can easily be negotiated. All it usually takes is a simple phone call. You may be surprised at how flexible these companies are willing to be and how much you could potentially save simply by asking.

 

Boost your bottom line.

If cutting out unnecessary spending isn’t enough (or you simply can’t bring yourself to say goodbye to your morning latte), another option is to increase your income. There are a number of ways you can do this, whether it’s getting a secondary part-time job, freelancing, starting a side-hustle or seeking full-time career opportunities that pay better. Adding some extra money to your budget can open all kinds of doors for you in terms of apartment options.

 

Ditch the car.

The good news is, Dallas is home to some pretty awesome public transportation options. For instance, there’s the Dallas Area Rapid Transit service (a.k.a. DART), which conveniently links downtown Dallas with most of the surrounding suburbs, the McKinney Avenue Trolley (a.k.a. the M-Line), which covers the Uptown, Downtown and Klyde Warren Park areas, and of course, ride-sharing services like Uber and Lyft. By taking advantage of these affordable services, you can easily ditch your personal vehicle and all the expenses that come with it, like payments, insurance, gas, etc.

 

Work with a pro.

The last tip we’ve got to offer is to consider working with a professional. Our Dallas apartment locators have connections with some of the most affluent apartment communities in the DFW area. As such, we know about deals and options that aren’t necessarily available to the general public. Best of all, we can match you with a luxury apartment that suits your budget without charging you a single penny. What do you have to lose? Get in touch today to learn more!

June 15, 2020 / by / in ,
Roommate Living: Budgeting Tips for Shared Expenses

 

Sharing your Dallas apartment with a roommate or two can be a great arrangement, but figuring out how to divvy up the bills can sometimes be challenging. The fact is, it’s not always as easy as just splitting everything 50/50, and different people have different viewpoints and practices when it comes to budgeting and spending. Establishing some guidelines in advance can help prevent disagreements, misunderstandings and financial issues from arising down the road. Below, our apartment locating experts draw off their decades of experience to offer some pro tips for budgeting shared expenses.

 

Create a plan and commit to it.

The goal of creating a budget in advance is to help keep the peace for the long-term. This requires that everyone involved be on the same page and happy, or at least comfortable with the plan. However you choose to divvy things up, whether it be each roommate taking a particular bill or splitting all bills proportionately, make sure these details are all hammered out and fully agreed upon before moving forward.

 

Think ahead.

Future problems can easily be avoided if you try to anticipate what issues may come up down the road. For example, let’s say you decide that each roommate will take one or two utility bills. Anticipating in advance the possibility of one utility being overused can help you plan for how to prevent an issue down the road. So, you may agree that the A/C will be kept at a certain temperature to prevent the electric bill from skyrocketing disproportionately.

 

Decide what expenses are worth sharing.

Obviously, not every expense will make sense to share/budget for. Some things are more subjective and therefore more difficult for more than one party to agree to. For instance, everyone has their own taste and preferences on things like décor and furniture. Agreeing to split the cost of such items may not work in situations where one roommate has more expensive taste than the other(s). Therefore, it might make more sense to stick with the more straightforward bills, like rent and utilities.

 

Consider the unexpected.

From time to time, expenses may arise unexpectedly, such as repairs, rental increases or unforeseen fees. It’s a good idea to decide in advance how these unplanned expenses will be divided if and when they do come up. Ideally, setting aside a little extra each week or month can help cushion the blow and prevent these last-minute costs from causing financial hardship.

 

Keep track.

It may seem like an unnecessary extra step, but keeping track of all your expenses can come in handy should any questions or concerns arise throughout your tenancy. Having a record of the bills that have been incurred and paid can also be helpful in case you decide to audit things down the road. For example, you might decide to revisit your budget agreement annually to make sure everyone is still paying his or her fair share. Having all of the details handy can make this step infinitely easier.

 

Sharing your living space with someone else can be an excellent way to save money, but if you’re not careful, financial disagreements could erode an otherwise perfect arrangement. The budgeting tips above should help keep the atmosphere in your home happy, peaceful and respectful.

May 17, 2020 / by / in , ,
Thinking of Breaking Your Lease? 4 Important Things to Do First

 

There comes a time in every renter’s life when it’s time to move on, whether it’s due to a relocation, a better opportunity, changes in circumstances or something else. When that time happens to arise in the middle of a lease, however, there are a number of things to consider – especially if you’re looking to break your lease without incurring too much hassle or expense. While there’s no way to guarantee you’ll escape unscathed, there are a few things you can do to improve your odds.

 

Check your lease.

The first thing you should do is dig out your lease and read through it, looking specifically for an early termination or break clause. This section should provide more details around the requirements that must be met in order to break the lease and what the consequences may be in the case that you do. For instance, most landlords and property managers require, at the very least, a written notice. There will also most likely be a fee involved.

 

Give your landlord a call.

Even if there are specific requirements spelled out in your lease, you may be able to negotiate a better outcome if you give your landlord or property manager a call. At the very least, he or she may be willing to work with you to make the penalty a little easier to manage. For instance, if you are required to pay two month’s rent in order to get out of your lease, the landlord may consider allowing you to make that payment in several installments. That way, they still get their money but you’re not financially strapped.

 

Find a replacement.

The reason landlords have tenants sign leases and put early termination clauses in them is because they want to limit vacancies as much as possible. If you know of someone suitable who would be willing to take over your lease, you may be able to negotiate a transition without having to pay any penalties, since you’ll be saving your landlord time and prevent a vacancy. Don’t know anyone? Ask around or place an ad. Your effort in getting the ball rolling will likely be greatly appreciated.

 

Justify your stance legally, if possible.

There are certain situations in which breaking a lease is legal and can be done without consequence. Some of those situations may include, but not be limited to:

  • Unsafe or otherwise uninhabitable apartment conditions
  • Property manager or landlord has violated entry rules or engaged in harassment
  • Reassignment due to active military duty
  • Apartment is considered illegal and therefore un-rentable

 

If you believe your situation may fall into one of these categories, do some homework and be prepared. That way, when you notify the landlord or property manager of your intention to break the lease, you’ll already be armed with the information you need to back up your case.

Ready to break your lease or find a new Dallas apartment? Looking to relocate to the DFW area and not sure where or how to begin your apartment search? Our experienced apartment hunters can match you with the perfect place for your needs, preferences and budget. Get in touch today to get the ball rolling!

May 13, 2020 / by / in ,