It’s that time of year. You’ve just moved into your apartment, are finally settling in, and suddenly you’re already being asked about renewing your lease for the 2018-2019 lease term! You may be thinking “I don’t even know if I’m going to like who I’m living with or where I’m living now, so how am I supposed to choose for next year already?”. We totally understand!
Madison’s campus area market is a unique one. Almost all apartments in the campus area begin leasing for the following fall nearly 11 months in advance. It seems crazy, we know, but MPM adheres to this schedule in order to be as fair and efficient as possible for our residents and property owners.
Deciding Whether to Renew
Most landlords will give you a week or two to make a decision about renewing before they list your unit publicly. If you like where you are living, get along well with your roommates, and are confident in your plans for next fall, it’s always best to renew your lease during this time frame. If you wait to renew, and your unit gets placed on the market, there is a chance that your unit will be signed by someone new.
If you like your apartment but have plans to switch roommates, you are still able to renew your lease, remove the residents who are leaving, and add your new roomies.
In most cases, the renewal rate you are offered will be lower than the market rent price offered to the public. The lower-than-market rate and saving on moving costs can make renewing your lease a good option financially.
Ask your landlord if they are offering any additional incentives for residents who renew their leases!
I Don’t Want to Renew. When Should I Sign a New Lease?
There isn’t really a “best time” to sign a lease. It all comes down to your needs. Some people prefer to plan ahead and sign a lease early. The benefits of signing a lease during the fall are that you typically have first pick of the most desirable units, and many landlords offer promotional rates and gifts for signing early.
Others prefer to wait to find housing until later in the school year. This option is great for those who aren’t yet sure of their plans for the following year. Landlords may also offer discounted rates for units that are still on the market later in the year.
Regardless of when in the year you begin your housing search, be sure to read our tips for choosing your next apartment in Madison before signing on the dotted line.