Apartment Renting in Oaxaca, Mexico

Renting an apartment often presents a nice alternative to hotels or hostels for travelers staying in one location for a few days or longer. Hotels and hostels are more common than apartments, of course, but apartments should be considered.

Renting an apartment for a week or longer offers several advantages to staying in a hotel or hostel. One key advantage is cost: a nice apartment will just about always be cheaper if not far cheaper than a comparably nice hotel room. A second advantage is that an apartment almost by definition is far larger than any hotel room, and this is more important the longer the stay. Returning to a hotel room day after day where the only options are sitting on the one chair or lying on the bed gets old fast.

A third advantage is that an apartment has cooking facilities, which allows for additional savings; eating out daily adds up quickly. Additionally, people who have special dietary needs might prefer their own kitchen. Finally, one subtle advantage apartments have over both hotels and hostels includes allowing one to feel just a little less like a tourist and a little more like a local. Emerging from an unmarked building onto the street has a different feel from exiting a hotel.

Hostels can be quite inexpensive, and sometimes cost as little as an apartment, but that low cost comes with a price: shared dorms, bathrooms, and kitchen facilities. All can be shared, or sometimes a private room can be rented with a shared bath, or a private room and private bath can be rented with a shared kitchen. But the increased privacy costs more. Many people aren’t keen about sharing close quarters with strangers. This might be acceptable for more adventurous travelers (indeed, I shared quarters with strangers when I was younger) but most travelers want a nice, clean, quiet, and private place.

However, one advantage hotels and hostels have over apartments is that they tend to offer more service, including a desk clerk on duty most of the time, daily room cleaning, and so on. Apartments tend to be less directly service oriented. On-site manager, garbage removal, drinking water, sheets, towels, etc. might or not be part of the apartment package; you need to ask.

In Oaxaca, there are apartments that specifically cater to travelers and tourists, often associated with a hotel. They are prepared to deal with foreigners who don’t speak Spanish very well, and they also are likely to repair things that break and return your damage deposit when you leave. (Oaxacan landlords don’t necessarily do either!) There are other non-hotel affiliated apartment rentals that cater to the foreign traveler, but they aren’t always easy to find.

Finding them is not easy because there aren’t very many good ones. But here are a few tips that might help.

The first useful step, if you don’t have any local Oaxacan contacts, is to check the Internet. There are several good apartments listed that cater to foreigners and have nice, clean, tastefully decorated apartments at reasonable prices. Most are small, but they will be nice or at least nice enough. Arranging accommodations in advance is a huge relief to a lot of people, who then are able to focus their initial days or weeks on something other than trudging around looking for an apartment.

Info to seek — what is included in the price (gas, electric, city water, garbage removal, etc.), how much is the deposit, is there high speed Internet, kitchen furnished, maid service, and so on. Noise, access, security, pets, etc. Also inquire about the water tank capacity, a cistern, and its size. Apartments without adequate cisterns, especially during the dry season (Spring), can be very uncomfortable.

Be aware that apartment hunting after arriving in Oaxaca usually isn’t quite as easy and straightforward as in the US. In the US, many apartment buildings have an easily visible sign facing the street with contact info, and often basic info like how many rooms, baths, etc. And a quick phone call yields any additional basic info you need to decide if a showing is worth the time. In Oaxaca, signs out front are usually handwritten and have no info besides the phone number. So you often end up wasting time calling someone to discover it’s not worth seeing. If someone answers the phone. And if that person happens to know something about the apartment. Sometimes it takes multiple calls to get basic information.

Because there is no central listing of available rental apartments that I know of in Oaxaca, reliance on ad hoc listings is necessary. Newspapers have a small number of apartment rentals in their classified section but they tend toward the expensive. (This is not all bad: most gringos probably should look for more expensive apartments because the cheap ones are cheap for reasons prohibiting much gringo interest.) The Oaxaca Times, for example, could be checked on line before arriving.

A second place to look after arriving in Oaxaca is in the apartment listings at The Oaxaca Lending Library, on Pino Suarez just south of El Parque Llano. This is probably the best place to look, especially for nicer places that are gringo friendly.

After that, it’s pretty much walking around the streets and hit or miss. This last method is very time consuming and can be unpleasant and frustrating, especially when hot outside. I’ve looked at dozens of apartments with this method — it’s hot, apartments are far apart, sometimes the owners are 15 minutes late, etc. Often you can see within a nanosecond that the unit is nowhere near what you would consider — their definition of two bedrooms isn’t close to what you would call two bedrooms, the kitchen is grimy, etc. The primary advantage is learning the streets and neighborhoods and practicing Spanish. But gems are out there, however few and far between.

By all means consider renting an apartment if you are staying more than a few days, and especially if staying a week or longer. The extra space and the cost savings will make the search well worth the time.

The Best Places to Rent Apartments in Saginaw

If you really like the feeling of a small town atmosphere and want to change your lifestyle and move to a place that will offer a slower pace of living, you may want to consider moving to Saginaw, Michigan. This quaint town is located in the lower part of Michigan. It is 83.4 miles northwest of Detroit and only a 20 minute drive to Lake Huron. Scenic Lake Michigan is about an hour and a half away and the windy city of Chicago is 218.9 miles away or 4 hours by car.

Saginaw is well known for the many cultural events that are held year-round. These include live music performances and many outdoor festivals as well. There are many places to visit such as the Mid-Michigan Children’s Museum and the Children’s Zoo which makes this town a nice place to raise a family.

Michigan’s Great Lakes have a many things to offer to a resident of Saginaw. For the active outdoor person, there are many public beaches nearby. There are also many parks and snowmobile trails that allow year-round activities to be enjoyed by all ages.

The real estate industry in Saginaw, Michigan is rather stable considering today’s market. The median home value for the area is around $ 70,000, making it a very affordable place to live. However the median values on Saginaw, Michigan apartments are only $ 600.00 per month and it is possible to find a nice comfortable 2 bedroom place for as little as $ 500.00 per month. Also, one bedroom units generally go for $450.00 to $ 500.00 per month. You might be better off looking for apartments in Saginaw rather than trying to find a property to purchase.

Examples of some of the rental properties that are now available on the market in Saginaw, Michigan include apartments at Township Square. A one bedroom, one bath, 650 square foot unit goes for $ 560.00 a month. In the same complex, a much larger three bedroom, two baths, 1160 square foot apartment will command a higher price of $ 860.00 per month to rent. There are other two bedroom units that will fall in between that price range as well.

A well-established apartment rental complex in Saginaw is called Castle Way Apartments. They offer apartments for lease and their prices range from $569.00 to $ 729.00. Some of the community features in this complex include a swimming pool, playground, and even tennis courts.

Most Saginaw, Michigan apartments include high speed internet as a standard amenity. Covered parking is also common at most complexes. However, for features such as a swimming pool or other nicely appointed items that may be included, expect to pay more than the average monthly rent.

For the budget minded person who is looking for apartments in Saginaw, a complex called Madison Park Estates is a good value. They have apartments for as little as $ 399.00 per month and that is for a two bedroom, 850 square foot unit. That is a lot of square feet for the money. Although the features are limited in this complex, high speed internet and covered parking is included. The nice part about it is that only a $ 99.00 deposit is required with an approved credit check. That is all that is needed in order to move in.

Finally, one more complex to consider before deciding to sign a lease is a complex called Eastlawn Arms Apartments. This complex offers rent for $ 450.00 and will include some paid utilities as well. The apartments all have newly renovated interiors and air conditioning with cable are installed.

The Complete Guide to Apartment Hunting in New Hampshire

Whether you’re relocating to New Hampshire from out-of-state, moving out on your own for the first time, or simply looking for a new place to call home, you’ll want to be sure to research and plan your move long before the day you need to start packing boxes.

To help you along on the process of finding and moving into your new apartment in New Hampshire, we’ve created a must-do list for your search:

1. List your Must-Have’s

a. For most people, this includes the number of bedrooms and bathrooms you need, access to transportation or major commuter routes, and community guidelines such as whether they offer pet friendly apartments.

b. Once you’ve identified the features you can’t live without, you can start narrowing down your search.

2. List your Nice-to-Have’s

a. The nice-to-have features on your list may include utilities, features such as a pool, patio or deck, or fitness center, or amenities like on-site laundry.

3. Determine Your Budget

a. According to recent figures, many experts agree that your total housing payment should be no more than 1/3rd of your monthly gross income. If the rest of your budget is in balance, this should allow you to cover all monthly expenses easily, and still have funds left over for saving or investing.

b. If you plan to have a roommate, be sure to take their portion of the rent and utilities, into account when factoring your budget.

4. Check out the Neighborhoods

a. Now we come to the fun part – deciding on the region and neighborhood you’d like to start calling home. As much of this will be determined by proximity to your job and means of transportation, it may be best to conduct a search on Google maps to get a feel for the cities and towns in the area along the way.

b. One of the best things about New Hampshire is that each region of the state offers a very different lifestyle than the rest. We’ve detailed out a few of the most popular regions to help you narrow down your search:

i. Nashua NH Area Apartments
1. Named one of the Top 100 Best Places to Live in America by CNN in 2010
2. Commuter-friendly and close to the Massachusetts border
3. Area consists of a small city and quiet surrounding towns – many options for everyone!

ii. Manchester NH Apartments
1. Conveniently located 48 miles from Boston on two main highways, with access to a major airport.
2. Manchester is the largest city in New Hampshire, and home to a significant percentage of the jobs and employers in the state.
3. An influx of new restaurants, entertainment venues, sporting arenas and events, and retail shops makes Manchester a great place to call home!

iii. Lakes Region NH Apartments
1. One of the regions that New Hampshire is known for throughout the country is the beautiful Lakes Region, consisting of lakes, waterfront property, and more activities, areas of sightseeing, and a never-ending list of things to see and do.

iv. Concord NH Apartments
1. Concord is New Hampshire’s capital city, and home to government offices, hundreds of businesses, and a thriving downtown area bustling with restaurants, shopping, and entertainment venues.
2. Concord is conveniently located on I-93, and is considered a midpoint between Boston and NH’s stunning White Mountains.

v. Derry & Southern NH Apartments
1. The southern NH area, and Derry specifically, is a growing region most popular with people who are commuting to work in Massachusetts, or looking for a convenient and family-friendly suburb that’s not too far from major cities.

5. Shop Online First, Then On-Site

a. Now that you have your must-have’s and nice-to-have’s narrowed down, and you’ve identified the region you’re most interested in moving to, it’s easy to do an online search to see what type of apartments are available.

b. Websites will now provide you with an Online Apartment Rental Application so you can start the entire process from home, and see what you qualify for. This will save you time from driving around and filling out applications on-site.

6. It’s time to pack, move, and decorate your new place!

a. Congratulations on finding your new apartment rental!

b. When you’re ready to move, check out our blog for great tips on decorating your apartment, storage, moving, and getting around your new neighborhood: http://www.redoakproperties.com/blog