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apt maintenance fees

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gypsygirl1925
2/18/2008 16:12 EST

I've read that all apts come with a maintenance fee. What does this cover and what percentage is it of the rent? Is it possible to rent a small apt in a safe area for USD$300-400 month? I've seen apts for rent on a website that lists the annual rent-does that mean you have to pay a year's rent in advance?

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valentine
2/22/2008 15:26 EST

Hi,

Apartments here are usually condos that people are renting out and thus have common expenses (homeowners fees), there is also a door tax, etc. I wouldn´t set your sights on such a cheap place, unless you have some connection to UY and can live near people you know or who know your family. An ´estranjero´ living alone needs to live somewhere within a few miles of the coast and needs to live somewhere with good security.

Count out at least $800 for the apartment and apartment related expenses.

You said you saw a listing for annual rents, think about how one rents in the US...they run your credit report. As a foreigner you don´t have such a thing here, nor any sort of collateral. Are you going to get your residency papers? Will you have an account in a local bank? How can the owners be sure you aren´t going to trash the place and disappear?

I paid for the full year of my first apartment here. I have since moved and am now paying month to month. It depends what you can work out with the owners, same as in the US.

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gypsygirl1925
2/24/2008 19:47 EST

Thank you Valentine.

I completely understand about paying rent in advance-there is always the potential problem of squatters who are hard to remove.

$800USD per month for an apt would be completely out of the question for me. That's more than apts here where I live in western WA.

Is it ever possible to rent a furnished apt? It seems a lot of expense and trouble to rent and completely outfit an apt before you even have your residency approved. One may only want to try out the city for a while to see if it is a good fit.

If it's not too nosy, can you let us know what area you live in and what your rent is? Do you have roommates?

Lastly, the price of apts seems to be good value compared to my area, but I've read you have to pay in cash. Is this true?

Thanks for all your time,

Candy

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valentine
2/25/2008 09:02 EST

I know if you are from someplace besides Los Angeles you would think $800 is high, but with gas and electric, water, door tax, and homeowners fees, it is hard to find cheaper. Not because cheaper rents do not exist, but because the perception of Americans as wealthy is universal no matter what you wear or how you live. No one will hurt you, but you will be robbed incessantly if you move to, say, Malvin Norte. Of course there are always possiblilities. I do know a lady who is considering renting out a room in her beach front apartment for $500. But in general people do not rent out rooms. If you are determined, you may find a cheaper place.

As far as furnished apartments, they are available but harder to find. Some are furnished with just furniture and some come with linens and dishes too. These are often geared to business people and teachers who are only here for a limited time so they are much more liberal about accepting rent on a month to month basis with less collateral.

If you plan on a few months of higher rent, and are persistent, I am sure you can find a cheaper place when you get more familiar with the city and make some Spanish speaking friends who can help you negotiate.

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