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Looking for a rental?

With everything that has gone on with the real estate market over the past few years, the rental market has become more appealing than ever. According to some national studies, rental prices have risen about 14 percent over last year. As a result, it can be tough to locate the right property at the right price. Many areas have a low supply of available rentals, driving up the price for potential tenants.

With the average rental property staying on the market for only a couple of hours, you have to be competitive. Don’t wait until the weekend to look at properties. Many rentals are available for immediate move-in and will not be available by the time the weekend comes. See them ASAP, even if it’s on your lunch break at work.

You use your cell phone to take selfies, so why not use it to help you locate your next apartment? There are a ton of online tools to help you locate one in your area. Many of these apps or sites will contact you once something new comes on the market.

While you are searching, start pulling together the material that landlords are going to ask for. Have one month of pay stubs handy along with any references from friends or prior landlords. This could give you a leg up on the. Usually, the first month’s rent and a security deposit will be required prior to moving in, so be sure to have those funds available. The quicker you can provide a potential landlord with your security deposit, the quicker you will secure the location. It’s that simple!!

Stay on top of your credit report and pull it yourself prior to your search. Don’t be ashamed or try to hide it. Everything comes up in the end anyway, and it’s better to explain something proactively rather than having a potential landlord think they were lied to. And many landlords understand that people get into financial trouble now and then.

One of the worst things you can do is stiff your previous landlords. Always stay on good terms with them. A quick phone call from your new potential landlord to your old one could be the difference between approval and denial. Always be upfront with everything, especially credit wise.

It’s true that you have to move quickly, and give your potential landlord what he or she is looking for, but don’t be afraid to ask questions. Will you be paying for gas or heat? Who covers the water bill? If you are renting a condominium or town home, what are the rules and regulations of the complex? You will most likely want to review these documents prior to making a final decision. These are just a few questions you should be asking.

With the rental market being as competitive as it is, you’re first move should be to consult a qualified real estate broker who can guide you through the process and negotiate the best possible deal on your behalf.

For more, call 847-292-4700, e-mail gz@zerillorealty.com or visit www.zerillorealty.com.

About Giuseppe Zerillo

Giuseppe Zerillo is the managing broker and owner of Zerillo Realty Inc. He is active on many boards, serving as village trustee of Harwood Heights and corporate secretary for Casa Italia. In 2011, he received the IANU Foundation’s 2011 David Award for outstanding promise in the field of real estate, and in 2012 he was honored by the Illinois State Crime Commission for his community outreach. Constantly seeking opportunities to give back, he donates to several charities and raises money for children with disabilities.