5 Pre-Application Tips to Appeal to Landlords


Folder with documentsIn today’s competitive rental market, renters must prepare to impress potential landlords. Property management companies look for a handful of qualifications to screen applicants, most of which can be attained through moderate groundwork.

Consider these five pre-application recommendations to win over landlords and property managers.

Evaluate Budget Constraints

Before applying for a rental property, make sure it is affordable. Don’t apply to apartments out of budget, even if the rent may be negotiable. Zillow allows users to search for rental homes and apartments within a designated region and price range, limiting results to practical options. Often times, landlords require income statements from potential tenants to determine whether they can afford monthly payments. Potential renters should make sure their finances are in order before applying and arrive prepared to provide documentation upon request.

Assess Records

When applying for a lease, a property management firm is most likely going to obtain a background check on potential tenants. This report includes the applicant’s credit score, criminal record, employment history and past residences. While some background scans are more extensive than others, it’s a good idea to prepare for all of the possible questions a landlord may have following a background check. If possible, take steps to build up credit before filling out a rental application. Set up online accounts for automatic bill pay to avoid missing payment deadlines. The longer bills are paid on time and in full, the higher a credit score rises. Further, increase monthly payments to eliminate as much debt as possible. Job stability also positively affects credit score, so it may be best to avoid risky career moves while attempting to build credit.

 

 

Avoid Credit Checks

If a potential renter is plagued by bad credit but needs an apartment right away, avoid property management companies requiring credit checks. As long as the tenant can prove their income level is sufficient enough to make monthly payments, the credit score shouldn’t matter. Smaller, privately-owned property management companies are less likely to run credit checks. However, most places still run criminal record checks, regardless of credit history policies.

Find References or Cosigners

References are especially important for first-time renters. Some landlords are willing to look past a bad credit report if a prospective tenant can provide positive references. Make sure those listed are relevant and unbiased, such as a coworker or manager. If the renter is involved in volunteer work, a supervisor is another good contact to put on a lease. Enlisting a co-signer is beneficial for renters with little to no credit. As long as the co-signer has a regular income and a good credit score, their signature agreeing to cover the rent if the tenant cannot assists in the approval process.

Increase Down Payment

Saving up for a higher deposit proves the applicant is serious about the apartment. This also eases the impact of a less than satisfactory credit history. The larger payment reduces property management concerns about late dues because they can deduct unpaid rent straight from the increased deposit. However, if all payments are made on time, it should be refunded in full. As with any standard lease, a portion of the deposit is intended to cover property repair costs and the sum won’t be returned to the tenant if they are liable for property damages.

Bad credit or a problematic renting background should not discourage a tenant from applying for the perfect rental. With these five preparations, many landlords are able to look past imperfect applications and feel comfortable extending leases. Renters with positive credit history looking at highly-sought properties should also use these recommendations to stand out as a low-risk, high-reward leaseholder.

By Jennifer Riner of Zillow

Written by Jon the Saver

This post was written by yours truly, Jon Elder. My mission is to help you succeed in your personal finance life. Join me on the journey to financial freedom! You can subscribe through RSS FEED or EMAIL updates. You can also find me on TWITTER
and FACEBOOK
. Happy investing 🙂

Jon the Saver

This post was written by yours truly, Jon Elder. My mission is to help you succeed in your personal finance life. Join me on the journey to financial freedom! You can subscribe through RSS FEED or EMAIL updates. You can also find me on TWITTER and FACEBOOK . Happy investing 🙂

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