How to get an apartment with bad credit

Applying for and getting approved for apartments in any city with bad credit is a hurdle that is hard to overcome. A credit score that falls below the threshold that apartment managers are searching for is a big setback. Many communities reject renters for this reason along with evictions. 

Residents who can find a property manager that is willing to look past the details in your report,  can give themselves a fighting chance to secure a home in the community. This will require a lot of hard work and the ability to jump through some hoops. As long as you’re not super picky about the neighborhood or location, you can get the apartment.

Now many of you’re wondering how to cut through all the red tape and locate a number of properties with a price you can afford. Let’s dive deep into how a renter like you can locate, apply for, and secure a place with a deal!

Run a credit report yourself

If people think that they have a low credit score, the first thing they need to do is to pull  their credit reports themselves. They can order a free-of-cost copy of their credit reports from each of the three credit bureaus. Check annualcreditreport.com. If you don’t know, these are  Equifax, Experian, and Transunion. Be sure and look at all three. Sometimes they can also have errors in them. If you do see any errors or mistakes on your credit report, take immediate steps to fix them. Credit errors won’t fix themselves. 

Can you rent an apartment with bad credit?

Maybe you don’t want to take the steps you need in order to fix or repair your credit. The one-word answer is yes, you can rent an apartment in a community with bad credit. However, you need to be quite smart and strategic about how you secure the rental. Here are some tips on how to position yourself as the strongest applicant, and get the home you want, despite your credit.

  • Pay more upfront:   

Most property managers and landlords require a security deposit in advance and the first month’s rent together to get into a property. If you want to make a good first impression, then pay two or more months’ rent in advance, or offer a good amount of security deposit. Some renters have been willing to pay the entire amount of the lease upfront. This tells the apartment manager you are serious. 

  • Find a co-signer: 

If you have someone who is ready to co-sign, make sure that they have good credit and a history of timely rental payments or mortgages. Do make sure that your co-signer knows what they are getting into because if you default or are unable to pay your rent , you both will be held equally accountable for it. This may irrefutably hurt the relationship between the two of you. A  co-signer should be a family member or very close friend.  Students are a prime example of a type of renter who might need a co-signer. 

  • Bring documents and references: 

Your credit score is just one part of the story that makes up your profile for applying. If your score is low, submit with your application documents and any information that tell the other side of the story; and demonstrate that you are a credible and trustworthy applicant capable of paying your rent on time. This might be showing your previous rental history. A letter from a landlord or manager would also qualify. What landlords really want to see is a stable income. Almost all apartment complexes will use the proof of income on your w-2 or paystubs in the approval process. If you don’t have any credit history, that rule you out alone. 

  • Search for an apartment that doesn’t require a credit check:

 Most owners of property will require a credit check before they rent their apartment to any tenant. They have agreements with services that will check your entire background.  There are, however, some landlords who do not care or require a credit check.  These are the types of communities and properties you will want to target. They are out there, you will just have to find them. 

  • Consider a roommate: 

Did you know there are services out there that match people looking for roommates in a ?  Just make sure that your roommate a good potential and has a good credit score as well as a clean rental background 

  • Readjust your expenses: 

Have you actually looked at your monthly budget and what you are spending your money on? Check your bank and credit card statements to really dial in on what you spend the most money on. You may find that you can cut back on certain items, pay back any debt, and save up some more cash. You could reallocate that money to pay rent, or better yet, put it in savings. This can increase the chances of you finding 

  • Sign a lease with someone else: 

Maybe you just can’t negotiate terms with a particular landlord, or they are taking too long to make a decision. In this case, your time is better spent looking to lease a place with amenities you like with another landlord. Try another area or find a home with a longer commute.   In fact, you should always have backups when your looking for your next space for rent. Have your considered renting a house? 

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