A bit more effort is required to find an apartment with a lease less than one year since there are less of these around. The shortest leases are month to month. These tend to be furnished and are much higher in price than the monthly rent on a one year lease. Often, but not always, the monthly rent on a six month lease can be higher than a one year contract.
Scan Targeted Locations
Drive around the desired neighborhoods where you want to live and look for apartment complexes advertising move in specials, or that indicate multiple vacancies in some way. An apartment complex with numerous vacancies is more likely to consider offering you a six month lease.
Search for apartment listings online or in local newspaper ads. Other methods to try are the telephone directory and free apartment advertising booklets found at supermarkets. If you want a high-end apartment, then you can find what are called executive or corporate apartments. These are rented on a month to month to basis and are typically listed in the telephone directory. Otherwise, apartment complexes that do offer six month leases tend to be more economical.
Look for sublets in the local papers. A sublet is where you take over the remainder of a one year lease because the current tenant wants to vacate early. These are more commonly found in neighborhoods near higher education establishments where students move a lot.
Negotiate a Lease
Book appointments to look at the apartments. Depending on where you are aiming to live, apartments can rent quickly, so try to make all your bookings closely spaced together, especially if there are not a lot of vacancies.
Discuss the terms of the lease with the landlord or management. Your ability to negotiate depends on how anxious management is to have the apartment rented. Other negotiating tactics include offering two months' rent upfront to ensure the landlord you will be a good tenant. Offering to move in right away and in the apartments present condition is another tactic to try. Private landlords are less likely to offer a six month lease, unless the current tenant leaves early.
Carefully inspect the lease to verify rent due dates, move-in and move-out dates before signing the agreement.