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Pointers On Finding Low Income Housing
Finding affordable housing can seem arduous. However, the good news is that there are a number of ways that you can find savings on the cost of putting a roof over your family’s head.
Identify cheaper neighborhoods
You’ll find affordable housing in less popular neighborhoods, whether you are buying or renting, so prepare to shop around. Hot and trendy areas such as the Village in Manhattan and the Mission in San Francisco should be among the first removed from the list. As an alternative, you can identify a low income apartment in more affordable areas, such as the outer boroughs of New York and Fresno.
You also stand to save huge amounts of money if you are willing to completely change tack and move to low income housing states. It would be an understatement to say that Dubuque, Iowa, and Manhattan are very different segments in the real estate market. Nationally, the Midwest and the South are the most affordable regions to live. The average price of apartments in the Midwest is $132K, while the South comes in at $147K. Compare those prices to $238K for an affordable apartment on the West Coast and $236K for an average home in New England.
If you're really bold, you can follow the lead of some urban frontrunners and move to exceptionally economically depressed areas, like inner-city Detroit. Students and young people looking for cheap apartment homes to pursue an arts career are attracted to the Motor City.
What’s your budget?
Create a detailed budget to help you determine what you can afford in terms of housing costs. Moreover, it helps you make informed decisions about what you need to cut back on to accommodate higher mortgage or rent payments. Financial advisers argue that dividing your monthly post-tax income into percentages according to how much you plan on spending will help.
Consider all expenses, including student loan payments, utilities, transportation, food and deposits to retirement or savings accounts. Experts believe that 20-35% of income spent for housing is a reasonable. The U.S. government considers housing "affordable" if it costs you no more than 30% of your after-tax income. If you spend considerably more than that, it may become difficult to afford other necessities, save money, and, of course, go on vacation. However, according to a 2007 survey, more than 60% of Americans spent more than 30% on an apartment.
Go for low income apartments that are within your budget. Some flexibility is allowed, however. For instance, if you relocate closer to your workplace, you might be able to accommodate more housing costs, since your transportation costs will be markedly lower.
At times, by simply by using your networking skills, you can find low income apartments that you might have missed otherwise. Tell everyone you know that you are looking for a new place—family, friends, neighbors, and coworkers. It’s possible that your colleague knows someone who is moving out of affordable apartments. Perhaps a friend of overheard a conversation about a new vacancy in his low income apartment building and the landlord hasn't even had time to put up an ad online or a listing. You never know!
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