1. Most rentals require that your gross household income (income before taxes) be at least 3x amount of rent. If you are relocating, most will accept an offer letter or letter from your employer as proof of current income. Otherwise paystubs are required, or bank statements or tax returns, if you are self-employed.
2. Deposits vary. If you are a first-time renter or have credit issues, etc., you may be asked to make an extra deposit, called a risk fee.
3. Most do not work with broken leases and evictions. If they do, the broken lease or eviction usually needs to be at least 2 years old, but 3 years with good rental history is more standard. A broken lease means owing a property money because: you moved out before your lease was up, you owe cleaning fees, have unpaid late charges, etc. An eviction is when you have been required to leave the the rental on court order.
4. If you are leasing an apartment, many apartment complexes are on a computerized pricing system, similar to airlines, where rates change daily and are based on your move in date and length of lease. Your rate is only locked in when you make a deposit on the apartment. Deposits are refundable at the end of your lease. Usually longer term leases are a better deal – the rates are better and you have a longer period of time before your rent can go up. For the length of your lease, your rent cannot be raised. Short term leases, if offered, are usually more expensive.
5. Fees: Application fees are never refunded, but deposits are, usually, if you change your mind BEFORE application approval, or when you fulfill your lease and leave the rental in good condition.
6. Most properties, if they allow pets, require pet deposits and allow two pets. Most have breed and weight restrictions. Most also charge pet rent monthly, per pet.
7. Credit requirements vary with management companies. If you have open bankruptcy, foreclosure, credit score below 600 you may pay a risk fee of some kind, if the property works with those issues.
8. Finally, treat your home with care and respect and when you move out, be sure and clean it very well, Do not leave anything that belongs to you, even if you don't want it. Most properties charge steep cleaning fees if anything is left behind and / or the apartment is not clean and in the same condition as when you moved in, and they often do not tell you that you have the charge. You don’t find out until it shows up on your credit report, as a broken lease.
9. Please keep your lease in a safe place where you can refer to it if you need to. Become become familiar with it, and what it says.
10. Good luck with your search! And please remember to list Terry Hiller, Century 21 as referral on your application and let me know when you have applied. Thank you!
10. Questions: Call or text me at 210-244-3635.