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Renting in Santo Domingo and Santiago

I am currently living in Sosua.  I would like to spend some time in either Santo Domingo or Santiago.  However, unlike Sosua the more I research these two areas, the more I learn about the need for a Fiador or to pay months in advance.  Yet, people that I have met here advise me that any money given to an owner should be consider a gift because there is little to no chance that it will be return. 
Am I missing something?  People are moving to the DR  they are renting apartments and like me they do not know anyone who is going to co-sign a lease for them.  Is the Fiador requirement as much of a problem as every one says it is?

In Santo Domingo you must have a fiador.   A fiador is almost always available at a price, usually one month rent. 

Deposits - are almost always "lived out".  So you just do not pay the last two months rent of your lease. Then you move out.

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