If you’re looking for a new place to live in Chico or Redding, but you don’t have the luxury of time or multiple visits on your side, you can still search for rental properties from your desk – if you know what to look for.
1. Take Online Tours
Time may not be on your side, but don’t rush your decision. This is going to be the place you’ll call home for awhile, so make sure it’s somewhere you can picture yourself scrambling your eggs, putting your feet up after work, and hosting a movie night with friends. In other words, make sure you like it. You might think that's easier said than done, but rental property site have virtual tours you can take of the properties.
You’ll also want to consider what’s most important to you.
- Number of rooms you need
- Proximity to public transportation, schools, shopping
- Rent amount
- Amenities such as a swimming pool, fitness center, clubhouse, etc.
Identifying your personal wants and needs will help you narrow down your search.
2. Read Reviews
This will require a little bit of research about the Chico or Redding rental properties you’re considering, but it’s well worth the time and effort. Since you can’t exactly drive through the neighborhoods to get a first-hand feel, you’ll have to rely on other resources.
- Google maps. Type the rental property address you’re considering into Google. See what images come up to give you an idea of what the surrounding neighborhood looks like.
- The local paper. Reading the local newspaper online can help you learn what neighborhoods have higher crime activity or which seem to have a lot of fun community events.
- Crime maps. Most cities have crime maps which you can access through the local law enforcement website. This will help tell you how safe the neighborhood is.
- Yelp. People tend to write more about bad experiences than good ones, so if you check the reviews on Yelp for the rental properties you’re considering, you’ll see what others have to say about their experience living there.
- Craigslist. Many property managers will advertise on Craigslist. This will also allow you to narrow your search by neighborhood, price and size, and it’s free to use!
The best thing you can do is talk to others who live in or near the neighborhood you’re considering. Even if you just have an acquaintance who lives there or can ask the property manager questions, they can help tell you about the different areas and where you might feel more comfortable.
3. Schedule a Visit
Okay, so you’ve done everything you can do searching for Chico or Redding rental properties from your desk. NOW it’s time to take a road trip. You’ve already narrowed down your choices, so pick 3 properties you like and visit them.
Don't sign a lease or rental agreement without seeing the property first, or at least someone you trust seeing the property so you can take note of any problems and have them fixed.
Once you decide on a place always carefully review the lease and don’t be afraid to ask questions about anything you are unclear about before signing.
Finding the right place to live can be challenging, especially if you don’t have much time and live in a different city. We hope we made it a little bit easier for you to search for Chico or Redding rental properties.