Simple Tips to Renting an Apartment with Bad Credit

Author: Lauren Ross

Real Estate Agent Gives House Keys To His Client After Signing C

A credit score can be the make-or-break factor when trying to secure a loan. Whether you’re applying for a mortgage or a car loan, having low to bad credit can hinder the application process – and may even result in a loan denial.

When looking for a new apartment, you will most likely have to go through a credit check before securing a rental.  It’s possible to find an apartment you love with bad credit; you just need the right tips and resources to seal the deal!

Here are four simple tips to renting an apartment with bad credit:

1. Having a Guarantor is Good

Having a trusted family member or friend with good credit on the lease may provide the landlord or management staff the reassurance they need to accept the rental application. A cosigner (guarantor) won’t be living in the apartment with you, but will be held legally responsible to cover the rent if the tenant defaults on payments. Because you don’t want to put your guarantor in that situation, look for an apartment with affordable rent.

2. Be Candid About Credit & Bring a Referral

Being upfront and honest about your credit history to the landlord or staff can put you in a favorable light on your apartment application. A credit score is not always a reflection of poor money management decisions, but could easily stem from recently losing a job or incurring a huge financial setback, like a hospital bill. Show the landlord or staff your efforts in turning over a new leaf with a reference letter. The letter should be issued by a previous landlord that shows your progressions in paying rent on time or overall rental history.

3. Offer a Higher Deposit

Most apartments will require a security deposit before move in – a covering cost in the event a tenant causes damage to the apartment. If the tenant has not caused any damages, they will get their deposit refunded at the end of their stay. To help alleviate credit concerns the landlord or staff may have, offer them a higher security deposit so they can take out a rent payment if need be.

4. Find a Roommate

Roommates are great because you can split the rent and utility bills 50/50. Landlords and management staff may feel more comfortable renting the apartment to two individuals, because there are two making rent. When you go to sign your lease, bring income statements, pay stubs, and employment letters so the application processes swiftly!