Renting with Bad Credit: Is It Possible?

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Renting an apartment is a difficult task for many, and if you lack a solid credit score, renting with bad credit becomes a bigger issue.

If you were lucky and had the opportunity to build your credit during school, then this won’t be an issue.

To be blunt, students and young professionals looking for homes for sale with little to no credit score are fighting a losing battle, as homeownership is a totally different animal. That said, when renting an apartment, most landlords will not want anything to do with anyone without a credit score.

Be that as it may, that’s not to say that those without a credit score are completely without options.

Here are 5 tips to increase the chance of renting with bad credit.

Apartments for Rent by Owner

There  are a lot of resources for people looking for sublets and rentals.

Platforms such as Facebook Marketplace and ABODO are good places to start your search. These sites actually offer some hidden benefits to the traditional renting and viewing as the person showing you around could also be the owner.

This gives you an immediate advantage, as it provides an opportunity for people with no credit score to chat with the owner and start building a connection with them. This also gives you full control over the conversation as to why you lack a credit score or have an insufficient credit score. 

Personal Finance

Another way to show that you will be a reliable tenant even without a solid credit score is to show your personal finance abilities.

Show the landlord that you have enough money saved to pay at least a couple months of rent should you suddenly become unemployed. Landlords fear that when someone doesn’t have good credit, they may not be able to make monthly rent payments. Make sure you let them know that you have money saved to pay your rent.

Get a Roommate

If you’re looking for a rental with a roommate with good credit, then you’ll have a better chance of securing that place.

Make sure that you use your roommates credit score to apply for a rental. This gives you the ability to sign the lease as a co-signer which requires no credit score at all. Co-signers will still be responsible for providing payment for the rental as well as any rental agreements on the lease, but the main advantage is that the co-signer does not have to disclose their credit score at any point of their lease.

Use References & Employment Letters

While the credit score is objectively the best way to determine whether or not you would be able to pay rent in a timely manner, encouraging other people to talk about your personal finances can help persuade the landlord to consider you as a tenant.

Personal references can speak on things such as the ability to pay back money owed, work ethic and spending habits. For people without good credit, having solid references can be almost as good, provided that you tell them that you are using them as a reference.

Increase Your Deposit

If all else fails, then try to offer a higher deposit amount. If your finances allow for it, you can level the playing field by offering more than just the first and last month’s rent. This helps show that you are financially responsible enough to have a sizable amount in savings despite having no credit. 

All in all, work on increasing your credit score, but don’t forget that you have other options as well when it comes to finding a rental.