About 43 million families rent properties in the U.S. It’s a competitive rental market, especially if you want to find a good deal on a place. Landlords and property managers depend on your rental application to determine who the next tenant in that apartment will be. They ask for a lot of information and you need to provide it quickly. An incomplete apartment application is going to cost you a killer place in the perfect location.
Read on to find out what you need in advance on your next apartment application so you get approved quickly and don’t lose out on a great place.
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Check Your Credit Score
Landlords want someone reliable in their apartment, and they want to get paid on time. The way that they determine if you’re likely to pay on time is through your credit score.
Be sure to check your credit score and know where you stand. You may need to provide a letter of explanation to the landlord with your application if you went through a hard time that brought down your score.
Proof of Income
Many property managers and landlords require that you make 2.5 to 3 times the rental amount. You’ll need to prove that you make that much by providing your most recent paystubs. What do you do if you don’t have a paystub or if you’re self-employed? You can use a fillable paystub template to create one.
If you’re self-employed, bring copies of 1099 forms, or recent bank statements to show what you made. This will provide additional information to the landlord and put them at ease. If you don’t make enough money to rent an apartment, consider asking someone with great credit to be a co-signer on the apartment.
You’ll want to contact past rental agencies and landlords you’ve rented from in the past. If you were a good tenant, ask them if they would be able to provide a positive reference for you. For first-time renters, you can use personal references or professional references. The landlord wants to make sure that you have good character and you’ll take care of the unit.
Bring Your Checkbook
You may come across the most perfect place and you want to do everything you can to get it. Be prepared to fill out an application on the spot and pay for a background check and application fee.
In most cases, you’ll pay an application fee to cover the landlord’s administrative costs and to know who is really serious about renting. The cost usually covers a criminal background check and credit check.
On Your Next Apartment Application
Are you ready to go apartment hunting? You now have what it takes to create a winning apartment application. Be sure you check your credit score, prove your income, have a list of old addresses, and provide great references.
Also, be prepared to pay an apartment application fee on the spot. You may want to check on this before you see the apartment for yourself. For more helpful tips to live a better life, visit the Lifestyle section of this site.