These days, having a less than ideal credit score can make almost anything in life much harder. You need a healthy credit score to get a mortgage, a personal loan, and an auto loan, etc. But your credit score can also prevent you from renting the apartment of your dreams. Landlords use credit scores to gauge whether an applicant is reliable and can pay rent on time.
Most landlords look for credit scores that are a 600 or above, and for those that fall under a 600, finding a place to live can be a huge undertaking. If you have been notified that your rental application has been denied, you are most likely getting denied due to your credit score.
If you want to rent your dream apartment with less than perfect credit, here are some ways you can make your dream a reality:
Get a Cosigner
Getting a cosigner is a great way to increase your odds of approval in nearly any lending or rental situation. Usually, a cosigner is a close friend or relative that has a great credit score along with a secure income. You are essentially “borrowing” their credit to increase the likelihood of approval.
However, it is important to note that bringing on a cosigner is a huge undertaking. If you miss a rental payment or are in the process of eviction due to lack of payments, your cosigner’s credit score can take a huge hit. Be sure that you and your co-signer have a healthy relationship along with an open communication channel.
Understand Your Credit Score
Landlords will scrutinize your credit score to an extreme degree. Before you apply, check your credit score and report to see what negative items could potentially keep you away from your dream apartment. You are entitled to receive a free credit report and all 3 of your credit scores once per year from the government mandated website www.annualcreditreport.com.
If you have negative marks on your credit score, call your lenders to see if you can have the negative marks removed from your score. You can ask to remove the marks out of goodwill (essentially, they just remove it to be nice) or you can offer to pay back a fraction of your debt to have the item removed.
Educate Yourself First
If you are looking to apply for various apartments, it’s a good idea to call the management company or landlord first to see if they have any credit requirements and what they are. Landlords tend to look for a monthly income of 3x the rental price.
All in all, renting an apartment with bad credit is difficult. You might even be required to pay extra for a security deposit due to the increased risk you can pose to your landlord when you have a bad credit score. As a last-ditch effort, you can even offer to pay the landlord a little extra in rent per month in order to offset the risk.
If you have less than ideal credit but are in need of an auto loan, CrediReady can help. Our network of approved lenders and verified dealers have experience working with buyers in all credit situations. Take a moment to fill out our free no-obligation loan search form today and start shopping for your dream car!