With job loss and a housing crisis on the rise in most states, a lot of renters are downsizing. Renters are trying to move and make the best use of their dwindled income, due to the Covid pandemic. Rent prices are all over the place and there is a great benefit of using a rent calculator to determine how much you can afford, as we move into the new year. When it comes to renting a new home, at this current time where the pandemic seems to have no end in sight, budgets have changed indeed. I found this website Zumper.com which is used by millions of renters to find houses, rooms, condos, or apartments for rent. On the site there is a rent calculator that helps you calculate what the realistic picture is of what you should be paying in rent, based on your new income status.
As always, you need to be realistic about how much you should spend on rent. First, you need to look at your monthly budget and income as well as your projected monthly budget and income for the rest of the year. Being a freelance/gig worker, this is very important to consider.
Your monthly budget can give you a range of how much you can spend on rent. First, you should make a list of everything you normally spend money on each month. Second, go through that list and start cutting out extraneous items that are wants and not needs (i.e. Starbucks). Based on your income after taxes and the new list you are basing your actuals on, you can see where you can save money and put toward your rent.
If you are planning to move, make sure that you calculate the expenses to move out of your current home as well as the upfront expenses of the new rental property. The usual upfront expenses include a security deposit, pet deposit if you have any animals, moving fees, and parking fees, if any. Also, you need to include the average cost of utilities per month.
Normally, the general rule is to spend around 30% of your income on rent. That means if you make $6500 a month, you should spend up to $1950 a month on rent. 30% to 40% is the most you should spend on rent.
On Zumper.com you can submit a digital rental application with your credit report.
Like other rental sites, you can find new listings for rentals in real time with different drop-down filters.