There is nothing quite like being new in town and trying to find somewhere to rent. It’s never easy moving your family across town, let alone to a completely different city or state. However, armed with a few basic tips, finding the right rental house in the Pasadena area need never be stressful rather than enjoyable. So here are a few tips to help you find the perfect rental home for yourself and your family.
1. Get to Know the Neighborhoods
Pasadena, CA is made up of a number of “neighborhoods”, each of which has their own “flavor” or “style.”. In fact, many of the neighborhoods are virtual mini-cities that have their own lifestyles. Take the time to carefully research each of the neighborhoods, read a few of the local blogs, check out the stories in the newspapers, and visit them to see what they have to offer. Consider crime levels, safety, amenities, walkability, public transportation, schools, access to your job.
2. Understand How Rentals are Marketed
The rental market in Pasadena, along with most of Southern California is a little different than what you may be used to. There are no central databases for rental properties as you might expect to find in most cities. Many landlords simply place “For Rent” signs in the yard/window or take out a cheap add in the local newspapers. While some landlords do use local realtors as realtors charge a fee for their services. With this in mind, you may find it easier to simply cruise around the neighborhoods you are interested in living in to find your next rental home.
3. You Must Be Fast
In Pasadena, most renters will only give their landlords a 30-day notice of intent to vacate. Because of this, landlords typically don’t list their rentals until the current tenant has actually moved out. The average time for a property in Pasadena to be on the market is only a couple of weeks, with many of them renting in as little as 24-hours. This means you need to be ready to move fast if you want to find a home. Statistics show that most landlords have new tenants moved into their properties within 30 days of them becoming vacant.
4. Be Realistic in Your Expectations
- You need to set reasonable expectations before starting your search, For example:
- Chances are you won’t find a rental that is as nice as the one you are moving out of.
- Chances are you aren’t going to find an affordable rental that meets all of your needs.
- Chances are you may have to buy most if not all major appliances.
- Chances are you will have to pay for water/sewer and all other utilities.
- Chances are your search for the right home is going to take quite a bit of time.
5. Be Prepared
One of the most important things to remember is that you need to be prepared from the moment you start your search. Be sure you have copies of all documentation such as pay stubs, driver’s licenses, references, and anything else most renters ask for. Be sure you have your deposits, application fees, and first and last month’s rent ready to go. As quickly as rental properties fill up in Pasadena, you do NOT have time to gather the required money over the course of a few days. Chances are good, that if you need time, the landlord will have already rented it to someone else.
Hopefully, these tips will help you be more prepared to find the perfect rental property in Pasadena. The most important lesson is to be ready to move as soon as you start searching, rentals go extremely fast, you don’t have the luxury of time.