Rental Application Approval Tips

Jason Roblin
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Is your mother’s meatloaf not what it used to be? Are you getting tired of your dad’s outbursts of laughter while watching the Big Bang Theory?  Maybe it’s time to take the plunge and consider moving out of your parents’ basement.

While the idea of moving out on your own and getting your own pad is intriguing, it takes a bit of time and energy to become an approved tenant.

Generally, most landlords have an application process. They are looking for good prospects who will be diligent in paying their rent on time and who will be respectful of their property. They will often consider the following:

  • Is the potential tenant able to afford the monthly rent based on their current income and other monthly expenses as shown on a credit bureau report?
  • Does the prospect have a good credit history? That is, do they pay their bills and rent on time and in full?
  • Does the applicant have good references to support their rental history and employment status?

In order to speed up the application process, as well as improve the likelihood of being approved as a tenant, consider doing the following:

  1. Obtain a letter of employment from your employer (on company letterhead) stating your current position and income level. This saves the landlord from calling your employer to obtain information, plus it eliminate the hassle of the employer trying to determine whether or not they should disclose the information.
  2. If you have had a positive rental experience in the past, have your former (or current) landlord write you a letter of reference stating that you were prompt in paying rent and there were no significant damages when you moved out.
  3. If you have a less than satisfactory credit history, are a student or do not currently have income to support the rent at your desired rental property, recognize these potential barriers for approval. It may help to submit a co-signor application along with your original application.

If the place you are hoping to rent is more expensive than what your income can support, consider choosing a good roommate. Have them complete steps one through three and be sure to do your own homework! You might want also want to determine some ground rules, so that your living arrangements are satisfactory to both parties.

It isn’t necessary to take these steps to become an approved applicant, however the extra effort will show how serious and responsible you are. Plus your application will be approved quicker, which means you’ll be able to give up the futon at your parents’ place sooner than you think!