If you are considering renting apartments in Columbia, SC for the first time, there are a few items that you need to think about when creating your budget for renting.
1 Application fee: Many landlords will charge prospective tenants a fee to apply for the apartment they’re renting out. The fee accomplishes a couple of things; one of the major objectives is ensuring applicants are serious about renting the apartment. Think of it as similar to a college application fee.
Additionally, an apartment application fee can cover other expenses on the landlord’s part, like running a credit check on applicants.
2 Security deposit: Once you actually secure your apartment, you will need to pay a one-time security deposit up front that the landlord will hold until you move out. The security deposit is required to protect the landlord against extra expenses caused by damage to the property. This deposit is usually the equivalent of a month’s rent, sometimes a bit more. If you’re lucky enough to find a place that allows pets, you will probably have to pay a pet deposit as well.
If you eventually move out and leave the apartment in good condition, you should expect to get your deposit back. However, if there is damage your landlord can keep some or all of that deposit to make repairs before the property goes back on the market.
3 Moving expenses: Depending on how far from your parents’ house you’re moving, it might be necessary to hire a moving company. And even if you don’t need to hire a moving company, at the very least, you can expect to spend quite a bit on gas during the moving process.
4 Utilities: Depending on your credit situation, utility companies might treat you just like a landlord would and require a deposit be paid. Expect the same from the gas company, cable company or any other monthly contract service for which you’re a first-time customer.
5 Furniture, dishes, toiletries, cleaning supplies, etc.: You’re lucky if an old couch or TV accompanies you from your parents’ house to the new apartment, but remember, you have to furnish the entire place. Then there are items like plates, paper towels, bathroom cleaner, a microwave — the list goes on.
The Dallas Morning News