As a student or professional looking to live in the central and campus area of Austin, finding a place can be nerve racking and confusing as to when, where, and how to look for a new place. Especially, since the area leasing schedule is called “Pre-Leasing” due to the time of year you have to find a place for the following year. Sounds crazy that you have to decide whether to renew your lease only after two months of living there but that is just the nature of the beast due to the high demand of housing in the area. A typical cycle of a student lease begins in August and end in late July of the following year with letters and notices of renewals going out in September with an October deadline. That’s when the fun begins!
October is a busy month for the early birds who know exactly what they are looking for and want to lock a place down to relax the rest of the year without the stress of finding a new place or missing out on one you know you desire. The early October leaser typically knows exactly their requirements of a new place, roommates, and wants to be able to choose from an array of apartments and houses. Many of the corporate apartments in the West Campus area are quickly leased and have waitings lists already queued up from the previous year. The demand is also extremely high for larger West Campus apartments and houses, 4+ bedrooms are usually the first to go as there are fewer of them available in the first place. October through the end of the year is the first wave of leasing and usually cuts out a decent chunk of the availability.
However, no need to fret if you wish to wait until finances replenish at the start of the new year there will still be plenty of availability. You may not have your very first pick of the corporate apartment or a very desirable condo complex but there will be other units to meet your needs. Usually around this time you still have the pick of the litter. After around March is when the availability tends to slim down and there are actually more units put on the market late due to owners allowing late renewals and closed sales by investors from the beginning of the year. It can still be a gamble to wait if you’re particular about your housing but if you have a little more flexibility you should be fine.
The last wave is from March until July and the units become quite scarce, especially in West Campus. In North Campus you can still find plenty of studios, one bedrooms and often two bedrooms. However, since it will be late in the leasing season, you may have to give up a desired amenity or two. It can be difficult for freshmen or transfer students that won’t find out if they made it into The University of Texas until that Summer. Not to worry, with all the new construction catching up with demand, the availability will be slim but you will still have options.
We hope this gives you a better idea of how the leasing season works and when you think would be the best time. Also, take the stress out of your search and have Uptown Realty work for you to find you that perfect place. The service is totally free for you and can save the headaches and heartaches of searching on your own.