11 Tips to Get an Apartment If You Just Got a Job

If you want to rent an apartment, you’ll have to meet a few requirements in order to qualify.

Many landlords rely on the rent as their monthly income, so they’ll ask you to provide proof that you’ll be able to make your payments on time every month. 

Can You Get an Apartment if You Just Got a Job?

Without concrete proof of your stable income, the chances of success for your rental application are pretty low. That is why it’s a little tricky to get an apartment if you just got your job.

Of course, you have a job and you’re getting paid, but landlords prefer people with at least a few months of stable job and paycheck.

But that doesn’t mean you can’t get an apartment.

There are some other ways that you can make your rental application stronger, which will help convince the landlord that you can make your monthly payments smoothly.  

Most landlords have set a standard percentage of your salary that can go towards your rent.

This is done so that the landlord knows you’ll not cause problems paying your rent.

The common rule of thumb is that your salary should be three times the monthly rent that you pay for your apartment. This is for your own mental accounting and not a rule or condition by the landlord.

However, not everyone can live by that rule, especially young people who are just entering their professional lives.

Also read: Do All Occupants Have to be On the Lease?

Tips to Qualify for Apartment Rentals If you’ve Just Got a Job

If you just got a job and need to rent an apartment, here are a few effective ways you can qualify for apartment rentals. 

Ask your employer for a letter

If you just got a job, submitting a letter from your new employer in your rental application can significantly improve the chances of its acceptance.

The letter will verify your income claims and offer assurance to your potential landlord.

Here are a few tips on how to get a letter of employment: 

  • Get in touch with your employer and request a letter of employment. Make sure you let them know that you need it to rent an apartment. 
  • If your employer doesn’t have a sample letter or format, send them one yourself to save their time.
  • Talk to your landlord about the method of delivery. Ask them if you could submit the letter yourself or if they’d like your employer to send the letter directly.
  • Consider sending a cover letter along with a letter of employment. It will help your landlord make the connection between the letter of employment and your rental application.
  • Confirm whether the landlord received the letter. Ask the landlord if they found the letter satisfactory or if they’ll need more information.

Offer a Higher Deposit

One effective way to make your rental application more appealing to the landlord is by offering an upfront security deposit.

This will reassure the landlord that you have your finances well-managed even when you don’t have a long employment history.

It also gives the landlord an extra incentive to accept your application over others. 

If you have some savings to tap into it, you can also consider paying a few months of rent in advance.

This will convince the landlord of your financial stability even when you have just started a job.  

Provide References 

You can provide references from your previous landlords or employers to assure your prospective landlord of your responsibility, reliability, and trustworthiness.

If your previous landlords can put in a good for you, it can improve your credibility by many folds. 

Reference letters are an excellent way to prove your trustworthiness to new employers and landlords.

Make sure you provide the contact information of your referees along with the letters so the landlord can double-check if they want to. 

Maintain a Good Credit Score

Your credit score is another thing that your landlord can also take into consideration while assessing your application.

If you have an excellent or good credit score, it will reassure the landlord that you are responsible and pay your bills in a timely manner.

This will improve your chances of getting the apartment significantly.

If you want to maintain your good credit score, or improve your current score, follow the effective tips given below:   

  • Understand what makes a good credit score. The key elements that make up a credit score include the amount of your debt, your payment history, recent credit, credit age, etc.
  • Paying bills on time is one of the biggest contributing factors to your credit score. If you’re making all your payments on time, you will be reported to credit bureaus, and thus, your credit score will stay maintained.
  • Try to maintain a low balance on your credit cards because a higher credit affects your credit score negatively. 
  • Keep your old or unused credit cards open because if you close them, the credit bureau will remove all their history from your credit report. This can result in the shortening of your average credit age as well as a drop in your score.
  • Don’t take too many loans at once. Having a lot of debt damages your credit score badly.    
  • Only apply for credit cards when you really need them. Collecting cards and balances unnecessarily can also lower your score. 

Find a Co-signer or a Lease Guarantor

Adding a co-signer or a guarantor to your lease makes you a compelling option for landlords.

A co-signer or a lease guarantor is basically some who legally signs on the lease and takes responsibility for the rent if in case the tenant can’t or refuses to pay. 

A co-signer is a sort of insurance for the landlord. Co-signers are mostly family members or close friends who have an excellent credit score and a stable income.

This may not feel like an ideal situation for you personally, but it will help you get an apartment if you’ve just got a job. 

Declare any Extra Income that you have 

Mention any unusual or extra source of income, such as child support, alimony, legal awards, tax refunds, etc. that is in addition to your monthly salary.

You can get a court-ordered agreement for these types of income sources easily. 

You can also ask the landlord to verify your unusual income online or by calling the court as this information is part of the public record.

This will assure your prospective landlord that you had a stable source of income even before you got the job. 

Provide your Bank Statements

If you don’t have an employment history or a steady income to show, but you have assets or savings in your account, you can show the bank statements as proof of your financial stability.

This will assure the prospective landlords that you’ll have a backup to tap into when you’re unable to pay the rent from your salary. 

Avoid High-demand Apartments 

When you’re looking for an apartment rental, make sure you don’t waste your time over places that are in high demand.

These apartments have several applicants, and it makes it much harder to compete and meet all the requirements. This reduces your chances of sealing the deal. 

Therefore, it would be better if you don’t waste your time and look for apartments that are comfortable and yet not too popular.

Look for a landlord who has a few apartment units up for rent and is a little flexible about their requirements. 

Get a Roommate

Another way of finding an apartment when you’ve just got a job is to move in with someone who’s already renting the space: a roommate.

When you have no proof of income, a roommate who’s already living in a rented space would be an excellent option for both of you.

You can strike a deal with the person that benefits you both, and it saves you the trouble of dealing with a landlord directly. 

However, you’ll have to find a trustworthy person to share an apartment with. Consider asking your friends and family for any leads.

Make sure that you confirm with your future roommate that their lease allows them to sublet the apartment so that you don’t get in trouble with the landlord. 

Rent from an Apartment Owner

When you don’t have proof of income, the rental agencies will be reluctant to take you on as a client.

In that case, your best option is to look for an apartment owner who’s putting up their apartment for rental. 

Dealing with the owner directly gives you the opportunity to talk to them more openly and explain your situation in detail.

Apartment owners don’t usually have rigid requirements as longtime landlords do, so you have a better chance of securing an apartment rental from them.   

Ask Friends & Family to recommend apartments

Asking close friends and family for help is always a great idea. You might find out that your friends have friends that offer rentals or serve as landlords.

If that friend agrees to vouch for you personally, it will be an ideal scenario for you. Personal recommendations are sometimes even more effective than professional ones.

Also read: How to Check Your Apartment Rental History Report

Final Words

Yes, you can get an apartment if you just got a job.

However, you might have to support your rental application with other documentation that attests to your financial stability or reliability.

If you can get a co-signer who has an excellent credit score, then that would be an ideal scenario as well. 

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