Once you've overcome the initial hurdles every expat goes through of moving to a new country, one of the most exciting moments is when you feel settled enough to consider buying your first apartment. It's at this moment your new country begins to feel like home.

While renting is, of course, often the only option when moving to a new country, we all know that renting an apartment feels like throwing money away. In many major cities throughout the EU, the monthly payment on a mortgage is less than a third of what one would pay for a rental each month. Purchasing an apartment makes sense for many reasons.

With inflated prices, getting on the property map, however, can be a challenge. Buying a cheap apartment is, of course, the answer. But how do you do that? Below are four tips to help you find that cheap apartment:

1. Look At Many Apartments

One of the best pieces of advice we can give you is not to get too attached to an apartment place when you're looking. While it's helpful to be able to have a benchmark from which to measure other apartments, it can work against you if you become too attached to a place as it may prevent you from seeing the potential and the pluses in other apartments you view.

Additionally, and more concerningly, if you become too attached to a particular apartment, you may end up spending more money than your budget allows.

Instead, one helpful strategy is setting up an appointment with a real estate agent and seeing as many apartments in a day as possible. This way you can quickly form an idea of what you are looking for, what you can expect for your budget and the quality standards.

Alternatively, instead of working with a real estate agent, you can do your own research and compile a list of 8-12 apartments to view over a weekend.

2. Look Beyond The City

Expand your search and look outside of major cities and, instead, at surrounding suburbs. If you don't work in the city or can work remotely, why not live slightly further out? Not only are the prices lower but you can usually get a whole lot more for your money including the size of the apartment as well as an outdoor area such as a garden or backyard, which you most likely wouldn't have living in the city.

Even if you do happen to work in the city, the good news is that out of city towns and suburbs are continually developing as cities become more and more populated. This also means networks for public transport are becoming better and more frequent. In many cases, you can find express trains or buses during peak hours, which means you can get from surrounding towns and into the city in no time.

3. Make Many Offers

Continuing from point one, rather than get attached to one apartment and risk being disappointed if you don't get it, we suggest making offers on many apartments that you like.

In the real estate world, there is a rule that says you look at a hundred apartments, make an offer on ten, and get one accepted. Making many offers increases the chances of you finding a cheap apartment.

4. Buy a Fixer-Upper

One of the best ways to finding a cheap apartment is to buy an apartment based on its potential with the goal of renovating it.

Before purchasing a “fixer-upper”, however, it's a good idea to know how much money you will need to spend on renovations. If you're handy, great. If not, shop around for contractor quotes to get an estimate for the fixes.

We would, of course, suggest avoiding a place that could be risky, hazardous, or cause other complications. To be certain, have a professional home inspector inspect the apartment to guarantee its safety.

Every Cent Counts

When it comes to saving money for an apartment, at FerratumBank, we have designed a couple of powerful mobile bank savings tool aimed to help you get there.

Within the FerratumBank app, set up a Savings Goal by first naming your goal - “apartment”, for example. Next, set the target for when you'd like to achieve savings goal. You will now be able to see how much money you will need to save each week or each month to reach your goal. Next, set up the frequency of your recurring deposits – weekly or monthly - we will take care of the rest.

If you already have some money saved away, why not open a FerratumBank Term Deposit and watch your money grow? New apartment, here we come!

So, if buying an apartment is your goal, we can help you get saving in just a few taps of the button!

Blog articles are not legal information and should not be seen as legal advice. You should consult our legal documents and list of price for specific information. For any questions, please contact our customer support at customersupport@ferratumbank.com