I remember when I rented my first apartment, my landlord asked me for my information for a credit check. Having just finished my freshman year of college, I had no credit history to speak of let alone any clue what they might want to know from my credit history. I had a cosigner for my first apartment but through the years I’ve had to make sure my credit score is good so that I can continue to be able to rent an apartment. A landlord wants to ensure that the tenants they select are responsible and will take care of their property and pay their rent on time. Performing a credit check on a prospective tenant can give a landlord a reasonable indication of what to expect from that tenant.
Here is what most landlords actually look for when they check your credit report:
It’s a no-brainer that the more debt you have, the less likely a landlord is willing to rent to you. Landlords run credit checks to see how much debt prospective tenants have. Once they know your debt load, they often compare that to your income to see if you can afford to rent the apartment while still being able to pay off your debt. If your income and debt load do not match up, the landlord will not be likely to rent to you.
Consistency and Predictability
Landlords look at a potential tenant’s credit report for evidence that the candidate has established consistency, stability and predictability in their finances. Consistency is demonstrated by what a prospective tenant does over and over financially. If a credit check reveals that a borrower has on-time payments with several accounts, over several years, then he or she is consistent. Stability can be determined by a number of factors. The number of years you’ve held a job, the number of accounts you have open, and your payment history all contribute to stability. A potential tenant who can handle his or her financial obligations and works for the same employer long-term is a financially stable individual. Landlords check credit reports to predict the behavior of the person who will be renting the property. The more consistent and predictable you are with your job and your finances, the more likely you are to be approved to rent an apartment!
A landlord can check a prospective tenant’s rental history through a credit report. A landlord can use rental history data to see where you have lived and make inquires concerning your previous rental agreements to see if you paid your rent on time or owe any money to your previous landlord. They will check your rental history for predictions on your future behavior as a renter. Rental payment history only goes on your credit report if your landlord reports your payment history to a credit bureau. One of the main ways I build credit is through paying my rent. I don’t have any other big expenses to build credit with other than my rent so I pay my rent online through WilliamPaid and they report my payments to a credit bureau so that every time I pay my rent on time each month, it goes towards building my credit. This helps not only my personal credit but also makes me more likely to be approved for an apartment in the future!
Submitted by WilliamPaid.com. WilliamPaid lets renters & roomies pay rent online, automatically, with more flexibility and it’s FREE. Users can also build credit with each rent payment.
While finding a normal apartment that suits your needs can be difficult, parents have extra concerns when evaluating apartments. Is the complex secure? Is the area safe? Is the apartment spacious enough? Here are some ways to help narrow down your choices to find the apartment that fits your family:
Search for Kid-Safe Apartments
Many safety tips for children in apartments occur in the actual process of choosing where to live. There are many things to consider when choosing an apartment. Is the property safe? Is it near a busy street? Is it well lit at night? Are balconies and patios kid-friendly and secure? Is the pool area secure and the playground well-kept? Additionally, look for apartments close to your child’s school for a quick commute, or the ability to walk your child to and from school, or even one directly on a school’s bus route. A gated apartment complex is best in terms of security, but also check to be sure that the apartments have deadbolts and sufficient safety features.
Search for Kid-Friendly Apartments
An apartment complex with a playground, play area, or on-site playroom is a major plus for kids. Also check and see if the apartment complex is home to other families as well. This will both give an idea of the apartment’s suitability for children and its potential to provide future friends for you children. An apartment that is in close proximity to parks or libraries is also preferable.
Search for Family-Friendly Apartments
As a parent, it is important to meet some crucial practical needs when it comes to selecting an apartment. Laundry machines or hookups in the rental unit are ideal, but an on-site laundry facility will do as well. Anything is better than waiting around with the family at a Laundromat late at night after work. At least two baths is another ideal, since sharing one bathroom tends to lead to squabbles and backups in the morning. Make sure there is plenty of storage space for toys, clothes, books, projects, and other odds and ends in the apartment.
With some careful searching, you are certain to find the perfect apartment right for you and your family. Weigh all your options, and think about the specific needs of your family before making a decision.
Living with someone can complicate a relationship. Money issues can complicate it even further. My first roommate experience culminated in an explosive fight over money and unpaid utility bills. In order to avoid a disaster situation like mine, here are some tips to divide expenses between roommates so that money problems are never an issue.
Know your expenses
Before figuring out how you are going to divide up your expenses, you have to know what your expenses are. You’re most likely going to have utility bills, such as heat, electric, and cable. In addition to utility bills, think about shared household items such as paper towel, toilet paper, and cleaning supplies.
Start from the beginning
Part of the problem with my roommate situation was that we never discussed who was paying what and how we were going to go about dividing up the expenses of the apartment. When you move in, have a “family meeting” and discuss bills and expenses. My one roommate is in charge of all of the utility bills and my other roommates and I pay him at the end of the month. It’s an easy system that we have never had a problem with. I also have a friend who pays for the heat and electric bill and their roommate pays for the cable and Internet bill. Figure out the best system for you and your roommates and establish it early so each roommate knows where they stand and what they owe.
Have a communication system
If you’re the one in charge of the bills, ask your roommates early and often for their share of the bills so they have time to get you the money. Establish a communication system, such as a text message reminder at the end of the month or a calendar on the refrigerator or in a shared space to outline what everyone owes and when it’s due. Communication is key in any relationship and when money is involved, it’s best to be in constant communication so that no one is surprised.
What about rent?
The biggest shared expense for you and your roommates will be your rent. If one of your roommates is late with rent, it can affect your relationship with your landlord and can cause you to have to pay a late fee. Look into paying your rent online. That way you won’t have to collect any rent from anyone at the end of the month. Your rent will just automatically be taken out of your account when it’s due.
Guest post by WilliamPaid.com. WilliamPaid lets renters & roomies pay rent online, automatically, with more flexibility and it’s FREE. Users can also build credit with each rent payment.