Rent Budget Calculator: How Much Rent Can I Afford?

Housing Finances rent-budget-calculator-hero

Want to know how much rent you can actually afford? Here’s how the rent budget calculator works: Enter your monthly after-tax income and our calculator will tell you how much you can afford to spend on rent. Adjust the slider to see how spending more or less leaves room in your budget for savings and discretionary spending.

Rent Budget Calculator

How much rent can I afford?

Your take-home pay, with the cost of payroll deductions for health insurance, 401(k) contributions, or other automatic savings added back in.

You can afford to spend up to

$0

on rent

As a general rule, you should spend no more than 30% of your monthly income on rent. This may be higher or lower, depending on the other expenses you have, such as any debt payments you need to make.

Use this slider to see how spending more or less on rent affects your budget:

Rent This should include all housing expenses like your utilities.

$0

Other Expenses This includes other essentials like insurance, groceries, or minimum debt payments you’re required to make.

$0

Discretionary This includes non-essential spending like gym memberships or dining out.

$0

Savings/Extra Debt This includes savings for things like a rainy day fund and any extra debt payments.

$0

According to the 50/30/20 budget rule, necessities like rent, utilities, insurance, and minimum debt payments should take up 50% of your after-tax income, any wants should take up 30%, and savings or paying off any extra debt payments should take up 20%.

See where the rest of your budget is going

How to Determine How Much Rent You Can Truly Afford

Apartment hunting is difficult enough as it is, but our rent budget calculator can help simplify the equation. Whether you’re moving out for the first time or you’re a seasoned pro, knowing how much rent you can afford can make the apartment search a lot easier. 

In general, experts find the average spending on rent and utilities to be around 30 percent of your monthly income. Even though this percentage can vary widely based on income, this rule of thumb was set to ensure most people will not be cost-burdened by their living expenses. If you’re paying down significant debts or are saving for a big purchase, a thrifty budget might put your rent at 20 percent of your total monthly income. On the other hand, if your living space is a huge priority, you might choose to splurge by spending 40 percent of your income on rent. 

There’s ultimately a huge number of factors that go into determining how much you spend on rent. Things like the location, size, and amenities can make all the difference. You’ll have to decide for yourself how much you’re willing to spend and forego in other areas. 

To help you find your dream apartment, we created these helpful printables. There’s an apartment comparison checklist if you’re looking at different options and questions to ask your realtor to make the search easier. To spruce your space up on the cheap, there’s also a printable decor sign. Check them all out below:

Next Step: Set Up Your Budget

Once you understand how much of your income will go towards your rent, it’s the perfect time to take another look at your budget. An easy place to start is with a 50/30/20 budget, which means you spend 50 percent of your income on necessities, 30 percent on your wants, and 20 percent on your savings or debts. 

After you move to your new apartment, your finances may change. If you find you have a bit more (or less) wiggle room, Mint can help you stay on top of your budget:

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