Sometimes you can’t control when you move. The birth of a child, unexpected job changes–there are any number of things that could determine for you when you have to move. There are other times, however, when you can set your own date. So in those instances, how do you know when the best time to move is? Several factors come into play.
Most of us have a budget we have to stick to when we move, so if your budget is tight, move during the winter. Because of the weather, holiday season, etc. most individuals would rather not move during winter months. You may not have a lot of options apartment-wise, because very few people are moving out. But there’s a silver lining to this: not many people are moving in either! This gives you some leverage to use as you negotiate rent.
If you are looking to rent and want lots of options to choose from, move sometime during spring or summer. That’s the time of year most people move, so chances are high you’ll have a wider variety of apartments too look at in your apartment hunt. Keep in mind, however, that because lots of people move this time of year, you will have to know ahead of time exactly what you’re looking for and jump on it ASAP when you see it. You will not have the luxury of taking your time deciding which apartment you want, negotiating your rent, etc. The competition will be fierce, so have your budget and non-negotiables prepared ahead of time before you start you search.
Don’t have a choice? Perhaps your spouse is in the military or an ailing family member needs your care. “Use your knowledge of seasonal rental trends to your advantage!” U.S. News says. “For example, if you’re looking to move during the fall, use your knowledge of the upcoming slow season to negotiate your rental rate. If you have to move during the summer but aren’t a student, you should consciously avoid apartment hunting in neighborhoods with a large population of students, as your options there will likely be more limited.”