Apartment Hunting

How to Ace an Apartment Application Interview

You’ve narrowed down your search to two or three apartments that seem perfect for you. How do you move your selections from your wish list to keys in hand?  There’s nothing more frustrating than showing up for an appointment with your potential landlord only to discover that you’re missing some crucial pieces of information.  Here are a few tips to help you be prepared for a successful meeting.

Credit score. Your potential landlord will likely pull a background check, including your credit history. You can monitor your credit with services like Credit Karma, Experian® and LifeLock®, which are updated weekly. If you are just starting out in your career or don’t have the best credit, don’t despair. Less-than-perfect or zero credit won’t necessarily disqualify you from renting. You may be asked though, to put down a more sizable deposit.

Proof of income.  Bring along recent pay stubs from your job. If you are a new hire, take along a copy of your letter of engagement/acceptance. Be willing to provide contact information for your employer, should the apartment manager ask. That means name, job title, email and phone number.

References. You’ll need references to rent an apartment to verify that in the past, you paid your rent on time, left the unit in good condition, were a good neighbor, etc.  If you are moving from apartment to apartment, a note from your former landlord will suffice. If this is your first apartment, get creative. For example,if you lived in a dorm or other on-campus lodging, check with a residence hall director for a letter of recommendation. 

Form of payment.  Most apartment complexes will charge potential tenants to run a background and credit check, plus an application fee. The average cost of the background and credit check is about $30. Application fees can cost roughly $25-$50. A lot of places prefer these payments by cash or check, so keep that in mind.

You might be thinking that this sounds an awful lot like a job interview. In a way … it is. You are striving to make a good first impression and prove that you would be a trustworthy and responsible tenant. Being prepared when you go on an apartment interview will go a long way in demonstrating your credibility to a future landlord.

At Vision Communities, we are committed to creating the best apartment communities for you and your family. We feature multiple bedroom layouts, in desirable communities such as Polaris, Clintonville, and downtown Columbus. For more information about our communities, contact our team to get started.