Are you looking for a new place? Have you wondered what do you need to rent an apartment? There is a list of documents you should gather and conditions you should fulfill in order to show your prospective landlord that you are the best tenant. Read on to find out more about how to prepare for your flat hunt.
What Do You Need to Rent an Apartment – Prepare These Essential Documents
Perhaps you think that merely filling out the application form is enough to rent a flat. If so, you’ll be surprised to learn that this process requires much more than that. The best solution is to assemble essential documents while looking for housing. Some of those are:
- Pay stubs
- Driver’s license or other proof of identity
- Bank statements
- Proof of residence
- Rental history
What Are the Criteria for an Apartment Application
If you don’t have any experience as a tenant, then your primary goal should be to find out if you are the right person for that. But what does this mean?
If your monthly budget is low or your cost of living is too high, you’ll quickly discover that renting a place alone is not the best option for you. Consider living with a roommate to share the expenses.
These are the major questions you should ask yourself and determine whether you have everything you need to rent an apartment:
- What is my monthly budget?
- How much is rent going to be?
- How much is the security deposit?
- What kind of credit score do I need to rent this flat?
- How much will the utilities cost and which utilities do I need to pay for?
- Who will be my co-signer? (In case it’s required)
- Who will move my belongings? Should I ask friends or my parents for help? Is hiring moving services a better option?
References and Other Relevant Issues
Excellent references are half the work. However, to get your new place, some additional papers will be required, too. Find out how to get excellent recommendations and what other papers you should obtain before you submit your application.
Personal Promotions Are the Best Recommendations
Why are rental references essential and who is reliable enough to vouch for your qualities as a good tenant? Having a few qualified people who can guarantee for you is one of the major factors that could help you to get the perfect apartment.
If you are an experienced renter, ask your previous landlord for a recommendation in the form of a letter. If they agree to it, they should provide contact information as well, so that your future landlord or landlords can contact them if they have any additional questions.
An excellent reference about your virtues sometimes represents the decisive factor when it comes to renting an apartment. It’s best to choose somebody who will confirm your positive characteristics that are crucial for an ideal tenant: financial stability, maturity, cleanliness, timeliness, and responsibility.
Just make sure to ask those people for permission to use them as your references, because your new landlord might call them to confirm your statements.
In addition to your references and recommendations, you should provide your rental history. That is a list of all the places you had lived in lived before with phone numbers and addresses. This list should contain the duration of your stay, the rent amount, and the reason why you left. To facilitate your application process, providing a copy of this document instead of filling out the form will be enough.
Pay Stubs and Employment Letters
To confirm that you are employed, your landlords might ask for two most recent pay stubs. Also, they might accept an offer of employment letter as proof that you will be able to pay the monthly rent. Proprietors usually accept tenants for whom the rental price is 30% or less of their earnings. So start applying for jobs as soon as possible if you don’t already have one.
Credit Check and Social Security Number
Larger rental agencies or property managers will probably do a credit check to find out if you are the right choice for them. Here are things you should know to protect yourself and your social security card:
- Show it only to a person who works for a legitimate company
- Don’t give this information to proprietors or individuals
- Don’t make photocopies of your card
If, for whatever reason, you cannot show pay stubs to your landlord, bank statements are a valid option, too. Ask your bank for the last two months’ reports that clearly show how much money you have and what your income per month is.
Proof of Residency for an Apartment Application
Don’t forget to bring with you some identification before filling out an application. These documents will be required during your apartment tours, too. That can be a state ID, passport, or driver’s license. In case you’re not a citizen of the country you’re moving to, you should show a visa or other proof of identity. Otherwise, you most likely won’t be allowed to rent a flat.
By knowing what your current job is and what a few of the previous ones were, your proprietor will be familiar with your financial stability. Also, this is a good indicator of how responsible and reliable you are in your day-to-day life.
Vehicle Registration and Proof of Insurance
You should check the number of parking spaces that belong to your building in order to find out if there is enough space for your car. Also, if you’re shipping your car with you to the new city, you should provide proof of ownership and insurance.
Read the Fine Print Before You Sign the Lease
If you find a place that is beautiful, clean and fulfills all your needs, it would be a pity to let it go to someone else. This can easily happen just because you forgot to pay a fee to apply for the rental agreement. So make sure you read all the fine print in your lease agreement carefully and don’t skip any crucial steps.