Financial Resource Center

Housing


Negotiate a Lower Rent Payment

by Susan Tiffany, CCUFC / October 1st, 2020


When money is tight and we need to find ways of reducing expenses, we usually go after the non-essentials, like entertainment or eating out, to decrease our spending. However, since housing takes up the biggest chunk of our expenses, it can be worth the effort to talk to your landlord and negotiate your way to a lower rent payment. Here are a few suggestions to begin the discussion with your landlord:

  • Pay more upfront. Offer, say, six months in advance in exchange for lower rent.
  • Leverage the competition. If a similar two-bedroom down the road is at the same rate, but offers a pool and covered parking, let your landlord know.
  • Make your good standing work for you. If you have good credit and are willing to move, let landlords make you an offer. Approach several, and let them come back to you with pricing.
  • Work for rent. What can you offer? Maybe you like gardening or painting or wouldn’t mind vacuuming the hallways. Trade your time or talent for a cut in your rent. If you’re really handy and have the time, volunteer to be the building superintendent for a steeper cut in rent.
  • Sign up for two years or more. Landlords dread hunting for new tenants. Lock in this year’s rate for two years or more by signing a longer lease.
  • Offer to pay a deductible on repairs. Consider paying the first $150 on any needed repairs. This may reassure the landowner that you won’t be pestering about every little hiccup and reduce your monthly rate.

 

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