Congratulations to the Smith family on moving from Tennessee to Torrance! I had the great pleasure of meeting these two and helping them secure a rental in the South Bay. Although I mostly help buyers and sellers with their real estate needs, I also help many tenants find a place to lease/rental. Did you know that it does not cost a tenant any money to use a real estate agent for their transaction? The owner usually pays the listing agent and leasing agent for bringing them a tenant.
Here are some renting tips:
–Prices are negotiable, which means this could work in your favor or in the landlords favor. If a house has been on the market for over a month there might be room to negotiate for a lower price. However, if it is a new listing and there are multiple applications you may want to consider offering more rent to secure the place.
–Pets may be negotiable. Depending on the landlord, type of pet, and how long the listing has been on the market you could always offer a larger deposit for the pet or even more rent to try and secure a place. All landlords are different so some may have a strict “no pet” policy while others may just prefer no pets and would consider one under certain circumstances. If you do have a pet, be prepared to pay anywhere from $500-$1000 per pet as an additional deposit.
–Landlords are looking for good credit. Be prepared to have your credit ran and to pay a credit check fee (usually around $30). You are entitled to a copy of your credit report and most landlords are looking for a score of 700 or above. Granted, there are certain situations where some landlords are willing to work with someone that has bad credit. If it is due to a bankruptcy that happened years ago, or a medical emergency that racked up the bills, you should write a letter to the landlord explaining your situation. You may also want to offer more rent and proof of funds to support that you have the money to make payments on time.
–Proof of funds. Landlords often ask to supply supporting documents to show either a bank statement or pay stubs. They are typically looking for proof that you have the money for the deposit and first months rent as well as income that show up to three times the amount of rent. ie: if rent is $2000/month they would like to see that you make at least $6000 a month. If you have multiple people applying for the house the total combined income would suffice.
Keep in mind that every landlord is different and one may be flexible on a certain term where another would not. Please feel free to reach out to me with any questions or real estate needs, I am always happy to help!