Apartment Hunting 101: your Leasing Agent

by : Kinan Beck

"Looking for an apartment can be a time-consuming and sometimes overwhelming experience. Trying to sort through all of the different apartment listings can be quite tedious and deciding which ones are truly worth your while can be difficult. Since so many of us are dealing with busy schedules, it is difficult to find the time to look at different apartment listings and to try to coordinate your schedule with the schedules of various landlords. Therefore, if you are looking to simplify the process while also increasing your chances of finding your dream apartment, it is a good idea to enlist in the services of a leasing agent.

What is a Leasing Agent?

A leasing agent is a person that actually works for the landlords of apartment complexes, shipping centers, and office buildings. The primary job of a leasing agent is to help the landlord find tenants. When the leasing agent successfully finds a tenant for the landlord, he or she receives a commission. The leasing agent also takes care of finalizing the leases. As such, the landlord relies upon the leasing agent to find good tenants that are willing to pay a fair price for the apartment.

What Should I Expect from a Leasing Agent?

Just as a real estate agent is hired to represent the person selling the home, a leasing agent is hired to represent the landlord. Therefore, you are responsible for trying to negotiate the best deal possible. After all, the leasing agent is going to try to get the best deal for his or her client as possible because this will result in a larger commission. In order to guarantee that you are properly represented, you might want to higher an agent to represent you.

How Can I Be Sure to Get the Apartment I am Looking For?

In order to make sure you find the apartment you are looking for, you need to have a clear idea of what you are looking for when you approach the leasing agent. This includes knowing how much you are willing to pay, the size you are looking to rent, where you prefer the apartment to be located, and the amenities you want to be included. If you are a pet owner, you will also need to bring this to the attention of the leasing agent.

By putting together a comprehensive list of what you are looking for in an apartment, you can simply submit this to the leasing agent and ask that the agent contact you with a list of apartment options that fit your criteria. Once the leasing agent supplies you with a list, you can select the ones that are of the most interest to you.

In some cases, the agent will only provide you with the apartment information and you will be left to look into the apartments on your own. In other cases, the leasing agent will actually take you to view the various apartment rentals on the list. If this is important to you, be sure to deal with an agent that will take this extra step for you."