We understand how difficult it becomes for a person to rent an apartment when they have poor no credit score at all. Credit scores determine how financially stable or unstable a person is. It shows a person’s credit history in terms of how often they’ve failed to pay a bill or rent, and how many times they have made a late payment.
A credit score of 650 is average and such will likely be approved when renting. The cutoff point is below 620 as that suggests a potential tenant has had issues financially in the past. Below we’ll discuss what you can do if you have a poor credit score and wish to rent an apartment.
Renting an Apartment with Bad Credit score
If your credit score is lacking or not as high as you’d like, options are available that’ll still allow you to sign a lease. However, in addition to a credit check, landlords may run a background check as well to determine any criminal history an applicant may have. As long as you’re clean there, these steps will assist you in securing a lease.
Start with checking your scores
First, thing to do before you start hunting for apartments to rent is to know where you stand credit-wise. This will give you an idea as to what you should expect before you go to searching.
You can obtain your free credit report once a year which you should go through to identify any errors. There are also ways you can check your score for free which is ideal if wanting to minimize costs.
Being honest helps
After you’ve learned where you stand, it’s best to be upfront and honest with your potential landlord. This will give them a fair idea as to what your history has been – especially if you’ve run into a rough patch financially. Let them know about your credit score and how you plan to improve it in the future. Help them understand your situation along with reasons you’d still be a reliable tenant with regards to payments.
Look for a Co-signer
If you’re determined to improve your credit score, then ask a friend or family member with a good credit to co-sign the agreement with you. This would make your landlord have faith in you as if you (someone with a bad or no credit score) fails to pay then they can charge your co-signer.
Put down a higher security deposit
A person with bad or no credit score may likely be required to pay more upfront payment. The usual upfront payment includes one month’s rent along with a higher security deposit. If you know your score isn’t great, save a bit more and expect to put more down after signing the lease.
You can also decide to pay two months in advance along with the security deposit. This may ease the property owner’s concerns and allow you to move in without any delay. Just be sure to budget that in before apartment hunting
Have your rent deducted automatically
Another way to ease concerns would be to set a permanent payment method. You can set up a Direct Debit, this means every month the rent would be deducted from your bank account. All you have to do is maintain funds in your account. It’s a good idea to save a bit more before renting and let them know how much you have on hand. This way you can pay without any fail.
Get a roommate
If the landlord is still wary of renting an apartment for you, then you may look for someone with a good credit score and rent the apartment on a sharing basis. This way they’d have a sense of security their rent would come on time.
Look for apartments that don’t perform credit checks
There are ways you can avoid the credit check entirely if you do a little research. Here are some available options you can take:
- Look for privately owned apartment complexes
- Keep an eye out for rental signs from homeowners
- Do a quick Yelp or Craigslist search for rentals in your area
- Also, glance at classifieds in the local newspaper every so often
Don’t give up
Once you’ve secured your space, be sure to keep up with payments as some apartments send your on-time payment information to the credit bureaus, namely Experian, and that’ll help boost your score. Either way, if you get declined, don’t get discouraged as options are always available and persistence usually pays off.