Note: This article was originally posted on Trulia Blog (www.trulia.com/corp) on May 11, 2015 by Trulia http://www.trulia.com/blog/6-premium-apartment-amenities-worth-the-extra-cost/
Before dishing out the additional cash, make sure the flashy perks offered by your potential landlord are worth the cost.
If you’re shopping for an apartment, you’re likely to come across a lot of amenities that simply aren’t worth the money. Really, how often are you likely to use the sauna, and who wants to use a wobbly pool table with bent cue sticks? But some amenities really are worth the cost — these six top the list.
1. On-site fitness center
The ease and convenience of an on-site fitness center means you have fewer excuses not to stay in shape. Particularly if you live in a harsh climate, this perk means you’ll get in your workout even when it’s brutally hot (or insanely cold) out. Of course, this applies only if the gym equipment is in good condition, and if it’s not so crowded you can’t get on a treadmill. Stop by and see the place for yourself during peak workout times before deciding.
2. Doorperson or porter
A doorperson isn’t just about feeling important or having someone to greet you each morning or evening. This person is also a valuable security feature. If you were a criminal, would you choose to cause trouble where someone was on watch or opt for the easier target down the street? While a doorperson isn’t the same thing as a security guard, they may pose enough of an obstacle to deter crime.
3. Better location
If you can cut 10 or 15 minutes off your commute over the course of a year, this is a real savings. It’s always worth the extra price to get an apartment close to work, school, or the places you frequent. Also, consider an apartment that’s convenient to your favorite shopping centers and restaurants.
4. “Free” Wi-Fi
If you have access to complimentary Wi-Fi, you can lower your cellphone data plan expense and save money every month. Plus, you’ll have Wi-Fi for as many devices as you own, and you don’t have to worry about charges for sharing your data plan or overage charges. In the long run, it’s cheaper to add this to your rent than to pay individually for each of these services all year.
Search “apartment storage ideas” and you’ll find pages of great ideas to make your apartment seem larger than it really is. If you aren’t the DIY type, you might consider renting an extra storage closet on-site, typically in the parking garage or basement. Besides providing quick access to your bike and seasonal decorations, an on-site storage closet may save you from looking for another bedroom, which can cost more than another $500 in rent per month.
6. Pet services
Pet daycare, dog walking, grooming, and other pet services can be expensive if you have to hire someone to do them. Including this with your rent is often cheaper and more convenient. One caveat: check out the service providers before agreeing to this arrangement. If the services are well managed, it’s a valuable perk.
Any amenity you’ll use is a good value for you. The key is to avoid paying for amenities that aren’t going to directly save you money or give you added convenience.
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