OMG! Why did the rent rate increase in just one day? Or why is the rent rate different than the price on my list? Or I saw this same apartment on another website and this floor plan was listed at $XXXX price, why the difference? I am asked so often questions like this I decided to write a blog post to help explain WHY. It can be frustrating when the affordable apartment you liked yesterday may not be so affordable today. You may be asking ‘how can the prices keep changing?’ There are many factors that affect apartment market rent rates; here are some of the biggest to keep in mind while you hunt for an apartment.
1. SAME FLOOR PLAN DOES NOT ALWAYS = SAME PRICE Almost all apartments have a starting price on each floor plan offered. Factors such as the floor level, unit upgrades, and views can cause the rate to vary.
2. SUPPLY & DEMAND As an apartment reaches high occupancy rates the rent rates tend to rise and they are not pressed to offer specials. When an apartment has low occupancy rates, the price may drop and they may run some specials to get those units leased faster. The rate can fluctuate either way.
3. DYNAMIC PRICING SOFTWARE Many apartments use this software. It’s an algorithm that determines the optimal price for a specific date. Airlines use this software -as seats on the plane are purchased the rates for existing seats change. With apartments as units lease or notices to vacate are turned in - the info is entered into this software. This is how prices can change daily!
4. MOVE DATE For example, if a unit becomes available on the 1st of the month, but you want to start the lease on the 12th, the rate if you start lease on the 1st is likely to be less than if you start on the 12th. WHY? Because every day that unit is sitting vacant the property is losing money. If they hold unit for a lease start date of the 12th they lose the opportunity to lease it sooner.
5. LENGTH OF LEASE Usually longer lease terms have a lower rate but this is not always the case now that many apartments use Dynamic Pricing Software. This software is designed to have leases ending at different times to prevent the occupancy rate to plummet. You may be offered a lower rate on a 10 month lease or a lower rate on a 14 month lease. It just varies.
BOTTOM LINE Now that you understand why apartment pricing is so fluid it will take away some of the frustration. Always consider rent rates listed are the APPROXIMATE rate. ANY apartment rate you see on your list, on ANY website, even the apartment complexes own website is subject to change without notice. Once you get a formal quote from an apartment the rate is typically good for 24-48 hours.
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