Getting approved for your first apartment with no rental history could be a difficult challenge. Since landlords are known to be wary about opening their doors to new tenants who don’t have a renting history. Therefore, how are new renters supposed to qualify with no type of record of paying rent? This is a classic case of “Needing an ID to get an ID”. You need to convince your landlord you’re as responsible as they come. If there’s a way there’s a will, first-time renters have been getting approved since renting an apartment has been around.
“Getting approved by a landlord takes prepping and the right documentation,” says Xavier, a 10-year renter in Bellflower, CA. By following the steps below you’ll have a greater chance of being approved.
How to Get Approved to Rent an Apartment Without a Rental History?
Landlords want to see that you have the monthly income to pay rent in a timely manner. So before you start submitting your application to different landlords across town make sure to gather the appropriate evidence. Evidence that will support your monthly income and savings.
The main thing the apartment manager and our landlord wanted to see is that you have a stable income to put towards rent.
“If you have a relative or friend who has rented before they should be able to look over your documentation and give you pointers,” says, Gary Cana a former renter in Bellflower, CA.
Documents of a stable income are not the only things you need to have. There are other things that will strengthen your chances to qualify.
It can be difficult to get approved for an apartment without a rental history, but there are a few things you can try:
- Get a co-signer: If you have a friend or family member who is willing to co-sign on the lease with you, this can help improve your chances of getting approved. The co-signer will be responsible for paying the rent if you are unable to, so make sure you have someone you trust and who is financially stable.
- Offer a larger security deposit: If you are unable to provide a rental history, you can try offering a larger security deposit to the landlord as a way to demonstrate your reliability and financial stability.
- Provide references: You can ask previous landlords, employers, or even personal references to write letters of recommendation for you. These letters can help demonstrate to the landlord that you are a responsible and reliable tenant.
- Explain your situation: If you don’t have a rental history because you’ve never rented before or you’ve had a temporary living situation (such as living with family), you can explain this to the landlord and provide documentation to support your case.
It’s important to keep in mind that each landlord has their own requirements and preferences, so it may take some time to find an apartment that will accept you without a rental history. Be persistent and keep looking, and consider getting a co-signer or offering a larger security deposit if necessary.
The pros at the Local Records Office created a list of the paperwork you should bring along to the meeting with your potential landlord. If you don’t have all the paperwork on the list try to get the majority.
6 Things You Need to Have When Trying to Rent an Apartment for the First-time
- The original or a copy of your 3 years of income returns, detailing your income history.
- The original or copies of your pay stubs for the past 3 years, proving your current income.
- Get your boss or manager to write you a letter that states how long you’ve been working at your job. Write down the company name, and phone number, and sign. To make it more official the letter should show how much you make and your monthly income.
- The latest copy of your credit report from Equifax, Experian, or TransUnion shows that you make your payments on time.
- Copy of your bank statement, including your savings, account to show if times get rough you’ll have backup funds to pay the rent.
- A list of professional references that state that you’re a responsible person that just needs an opportunity.
This is How You Nail the Deal With Any Landlord and Get Approved
If you don’t have a rental history because you’re young and it’s your first time moving out of your home here are some pointers that will help:
- Bring your parent(s) with you, the landlord will see most likely have one of your parents cosign a tailored lease.
- If you’ve been paying rent at your parent’s house have your parent write a letter of the monthly amount you paid, even if it was a small amount. The landlord will see that you’re responsible and are used to paying rent.
- Having pets might be a deal-breaker especially if it’s a big dog or more than one. You should ask about the apartment pet rules.
- This is one of the most important pointers if you’re able to provide a few months’ rent in advance that will show how dedicated you are.
Finding an apartment is difficult as it is and adding the chances of being approved to those odds is an even smaller chance, so being prepared is crucial.
At the same time take your time finding something that fits you, your needs, and your budget. The last thing you want to be is a renter that regrets their apartment.
How Should a Beginner Budget for an Apartment?
There are several ways you can afford an apartment:
- Look for a roommate: Splitting the cost of an apartment with a roommate can make it more affordable. You can also consider sharing a larger apartment with a group of friends or family members to save on costs.
- Budget carefully: Make a budget and try to cut back on unnecessary expenses so you can allocate more money towards rent. You may also want to consider getting a part-time job or finding ways to increase your income.
- Negotiate with the landlord: If you’re struggling to afford an apartment, you can try negotiating with the landlord to see if they are willing to reduce the rent or allow you to make smaller, more frequent payments.
- Consider government assistance: If you are low-income or have a disability, you may be eligible for government assistance to help with your housing costs.
- Look for cheaper options: Consider looking for an apartment in a less expensive area, or consider downsizing to a smaller apartment to save on costs. You may also want to look into apartment communities that offer discounts or special rates for students or senior citizens.
It’s important to keep in mind that it may take some time and effort to find an apartment that you can afford, but with careful planning and budgeting, it is possible.
How to Afford an Apartment on Minimum Wage?
It can be challenging to afford an apartment on minimum wage, but it is not impossible. Here are a few steps you can take to make it more manageable:
- Look for a roommate: Splitting the cost of an apartment with a roommate can significantly reduce the amount you have to pay each month. You can also consider sharing a larger apartment with a group of friends or family members to save on costs.
- Negotiate with the landlord: If you are struggling to afford an apartment, you can try negotiating with the landlord to see if they are willing to reduce the rent or allow you to make smaller, more frequent payments. It’s also a good idea to shop around and compare prices to see if you can find a more affordable option.
- Consider government assistance: If you are low-income or have a disability, you may be eligible for government assistance to help with your housing costs. It’s worth researching different programs in your area to see if you qualify.
- Look for cheaper options: Consider looking for an apartment in a less expensive area or downsizing to a smaller apartment to save on costs. You may also want to look into apartment communities that offer discounts or special rates for students or senior citizens.
- Make a budget and cut back on expenses: It’s important to carefully manage your budget to make sure you can afford your rent. Look for ways to cut back on unnecessary expenses, such as eating out or subscriptions, and try to find ways to increase your income, such as taking on a part-time job or finding ways to earn extra money on the side.
Remember that it may take some time and effort to find an apartment that you can afford on a minimum wage salary, but with careful planning and budgeting, it is possible.