How To Find Off Campus Housing

Finding your dream apartment is not an art or a science — it’s a combination of the two. Apartment hunting is 50 percent hard work — performing searches, reviewing the research, going on tours — and 50 percent instinct. “Is this photo an honest portrayal?” “Do the monthly installments make sense for my budget?” “Can I get to class on-time from that location?” These are the types of questions that should come to mind as you look for GVSU off campus housing.

To make your search easier, 48 West put together the following apartment-hunter guide for students in Allendale, MI — although any renter may find the tips helpful. While this isn’t an exact manual, the following information does answer many questions students commonly have when they’re looking for off campus apartments in Allendale. Still have questions? Feel free to contact 48 West or schedule a property tour today!

What Are The Best Apartment Search Tools?

Man Searching Online For GVSU Student Apartments

Gone are the days when the only place to find apartment listings was the back of a newspaper. Now you can conduct apartment searches of all sorts online, and they are almost always packed with additional photos, video, and information.

Online Directories

Not too long ago, students perused newspaper classified ads for off campus housing, squinting at the tiny print promising an “apartment for rent.” In the modern era, it takes only millionths of a second to raise millions of listings online. Apartments.com and Trulia are key online resources for apartment hunters. Although some lesser known yet youthful websites, like PadMapper, have found loyal followings among student renters.

Word Of Mouth

Search tools need not always be high-tech. Asking the opinions of current residents in an apartment community can provide prospective renters with details that may not be listed on the property website. And if you’re targeting student apartments in Allendale, speak with students, such as classmates, about their apartments. Talking with people is a way to gather useful details to supplement the information found online.

Apartment Touring Tips

Searching online and talking with current renters only gets you so far in a search. While you may end up picking out a few finalists, see if for yourself before closing the deal. The following tips will help you make the most of a tour.

Ask Questions

Schedule a tour by contacting the leasing office ahead of time. During the tour, a member of the leasing staff will escort you to an open apartment. Even though you don’t inhabit the apartment yet, use this time to envision what it might be like to live there. Walk into every room, flip on the light switches, and test the appliances. If it’s a furnished apartment, try out the furniture yourself. Remember, the goal is to achieve a true sense of what living in that apartment would be like.

Tour The Property

Don’t end your apartment tour at the door. Venture onto the rest of the property to check out the on-site amenities, assess the availability of parking spaces, and maybe even speak with a few residents to get their take on life in that community.

Explore The Neighborhood

You can make the most of tours of Allendale apartments by exploring the surrounding neighborhoods as well. If you’re a student who will commute to class, consider the distance between the apartment and the campus. Students also live off campus in favor of more choices for dining and shopping, so check out which restaurants and stores are nearby. Other details to consider include what is the traffic like in the area, and, if you enjoy walking or biking, whether there are bike paths and sidewalks to use.