Planning any sort of move can be a stressful endeavor, but knowledge and proper planning are powerful tools. Luckily, Chicago is an exciting city with a thriving rental market and a bevy of eclectic neighborhoods to choose from. Before your big move to the Third Coast, there are 10 important items to check off your list. 

1. Get a feel for the rental industry

Our market is a unique one, filled with a competitive spirit for renters and agents alike. In 2018 alone, over 10,000 new apartments were added to Chicago’s roster. One would think new real estate construction development is a great thing — and it is — but during this real estate cycle that began in 2012, certain demographics are having issues with student debt, are more geographically mobile than ever before and are demanding the convenience that comes with city life. New generations of renters are delaying marriage, children, home buying, and instead opting for Chicago’s high quality (and cost) of living compared to other large cities in the U.S. 

2. See how your budget stacks up

Chicago boasts one of the strongest rental markets and some of the most sought-after neighborhoods in the nation. It can be affordable, if you know where to look and when to sign a lease. Do your research, and make sure you know about the seasonality of prices before you sign in the summer. You could save up to $1,000 a month just by signing in the winter, or by signing at a new building that is in a “lease-up” period.

3. Research what it’s like to live in Chicago

Moving to any new city can be both exciting and scary. Chicago is home to a rich history, growing economy and cultural diversity. It’s hard to get a “feel” for a city without actually being there, so we polled our team of locals and put together an article on what its really like to live in Chicago. The good, the bad, and everything in-between!

4. Get the inside scoop on what you should consider when moving to Chicago.

Read this article to learn more about the things everyone should think about when renting in Chicago. It will help jump-start your apartment search, and you’ll have a leg-up knowing what to expect and what to look. Topping the must-haves include: public transportation; restaurant and bar deals; Divvy bike locations; and delivery zones (a major plus during potential polar vortex days!) 

5. Pick a neighborhood

Perhaps the biggest decision of your move to Chicago will be neighborhood choice. Check out this blog for a breakdown on the pros and cons of each neighborhood — from proximity to public transportation, green space, budget and nightlife. 

6. Plan a visit if you haven’t been, and tour like a local

What’s better than first-hand experience? If you have a chance to visit Chicago and preview your new home, you’ll have the best insider scoop possible with these “Tour Like a Local” hotspots. After you’ve found where the locals celebrate their after-work happy hours….

7. Call AptAmigo

AptAmigo is an expert on all things Chicago. We’ll help you pick your favorite buildings, schedule all your tours, and even buy you Ubers and coffee. If you’re here visiting, let us know! If not, we will be happy to schedule tours in your place and can even take video for you, call you during tours and be your eyes and ears during the remote search process. Learn more about “sight unseen” tours here!

8. Decide if you want a luxury apartment, pet-friendly apartment, or apartment with a view

Oh — that view. Lake Michigan is a dream, especially from a high-rise, and Chicago is home to some of the most amenity-filled apartments and luxurious, sweeping views in the nation. And, we’ll never forget about your best friend at AptAmigo. From the ground floor to the penthouse, dog lovers can choose from green space, dog runs, dog spas and even dog playgrounds. See our top-picks for luxury apartments, pet-friendly apartments, and apartments with a view.

9. Sign a lease and unpack!

We’re down to the best part — coming home! The next chapter of your life in Chicago begins once you sign on the dotted line, and now’s the time to unpack your life and begin anew. It’s an exciting time, and we’re equally as thrilled to welcome you to one of the best cities in the world. So dust off the Welcome Home mat, unpack with ease, find the wine glasses and enjoy the view. Cheers!

Sweet Home Chicago

The number of Chicago transplants is higher than ever before. If you’re looking to move to a city offering both excitement and affordability, contact AptAmigo to help you begin your search. We pride ourselves in making the process as stress-free and seamless as possible. We’re your apartment dream team!