Use the Economy to Lower Your Rent So You Can Start Saving

Are you struggling to pay the rent? Or hoping for a better place to live - but afraid you can't afford to move? You might be able to set your own rental price.

You've heard of a buyer's market, but what about a renter's market? It's what we're experiencing right now, say Atlanta bankruptcy attorneys. Rent prices dropped nearly 6 percent last year, according to real estate investment company Marcus & Millichap. Rental units have become more available as kids moved back in with Mom and Dad to save money and people added roommates to lower their rent.

While a growing number of renters could eventually create a shortage - making it a landlord's market - you might still be able to score a lower rent if you act soon.

Before you can negotiate, you need to know the true value of your current rental - or the sort of place you're looking for. Do research by going online or reading the paper to determine what similar apartments are going for in your area.

Use your newfound knowledge as leverage and try to negotiate a fair price with your landlord. If she won't lower the amount you pay each month, don't give up - get bargaining. How about asking for a free parking space, or an apartment with a few more amenities? Maybe she can lower your security deposit - or dole out a few free months in exchange for more payment upfront? If you don't think you'll be leaving the area any time soon, how about offering to sign on for a longer lease for a lower price? Whatever you decide, just make sure you read the fine print of your contract so you won't be surprised by a rate hike or other changes after you sign.

Worried that lowering your rent still won't make it affordable? If overwhelming debt is the problem, bankruptcy might be the solution. With bankruptcy, you can affordably lower - or discharge - debt, freeing up more money for your lease, your savings and your life. Find out if bankruptcy is the answer to your financial struggles when you sign up for an absolutely free personal debt analysis with an Atlanta bankruptcy attorney.

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