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Caitlin Ary, Renter in Burbank, CA

How can I convince a realtor/owner to rent a house to myself, my sister, and four other people NOT related to me?

Asked by Caitlin Ary, Burbank, CA Sun Apr 28, 2013

It seems like absolutely no one is willing to take the risk! I've offered to have both of my parents, who live nearby where I want to move and have amazing credit and WAYYY more money than I do, to be guarantors but it just seems like no matter where I look, or what I do, people don't want groups of working young people living together! It would be so much more affordable for me and all involved to live in a place like that, and I have friends that are currently doing it.. whats the matter with ME?

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Hi Caitlin,
There is nothing wrong with you. Owners often do not want to rent to a whole group of people, they have limit to the amount of people of , if they are going to pay for the water bill, they want only a couple of persons. It is cheaper for tenants to do it that way but for the landlord, specially if he pays for some of the bills like water etc... So you might want to entice him by paying a few months in advance, showing that you are serious and neat, etc...They want to make sure the neighbors are not affected by parties and noise, that the place is in good shape and order, and they also want to see the credit history of the applicants. If you have a guarantor, or if you have a co-signor on the lease, they will check his records and hold him responsible financially. He should fill in one application form and send it with the contract together with his financials.
Hope you get some help there.

Muriel Levin, Broker - Realtor
Votre agent immobilier de confiance sur Los Angeles et toute la région de la Californie du Sud
Agent Immobilier Francophone a Los Angeles, Hollywood,Santa Monica and Beverly Hills .
Residence, income properties and commercial leases
323 363-91-40
Muriel Levin @
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sun Apr 28, 2013
Caitlin, sorry you are having trouble with securing a lease for you and your roommates. The issue most likely is not your co-signers credit, nor is there anything wrong with you. The fact is that renting to unrelated roommates, especially that many, is quite risky for a landlord. There are 6 different incomes that she has to rely on all being there or else she might not get all of her rent, and also if these roommates that you aren't related to decide to move out there is risk of not finding a suitable replacement. There is also a lot more wear and tear with this many people living under one roof and many landlords are just not willing to take all these risks when there are other options. I think that the issue is that your scenario is a pretty undesirable one for any landlord at best. It is much better for you to find a place for you and your sister and maybe one other roommate, but in my experience, more than 3 is not going to work well.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sun Apr 28, 2013
I wish I could make a better situation appear, and I'm aware of all of the reasons landlords DON'T want young people in my shoes, but, nonetheless, my search must go on with this group of people.. Realistically, do I, or our group, as people need to prove our worth to a realtor/landlord? or do our bank accounts and credit need to do the talking? it seems everyone is different, as some latch onto guarantors/co-signers while others refuse to rent to us, specifically because we applied with co-signers, (even though they seemed desperate to get rid of the house and we were the only applicants). I just need a real solution that doesn't involve splitting us up, because I have groups of friends that currently reside in houses together and I just have no idea what magic words they used to make it happen! eeek! I know this is possible!
Flag Sun Apr 28, 2013
Dear Caitlin,
It's pretty common to find this in areas near Colleges. We have large homes renting to groups of unrelated young people in Westchester often (Loyolla). I don't think the groups are a large as yours, the largest I've seen in 4 people.
Each person has their lease co-signed by a parent who then becomes responsible for payments and any damages that might occur to the property. You might consider breaking the group down a bit, say you and sister and maybe one other person, it might be easier for the owner to consider.
I understand your point, but you have to think of the owner as well. If it's too much of a risk, you can appreciate their views. No one wants to have to get inside a rental and find a big mess inside.
You can offer a very large deposit(two or three times normal) as well as all the cosigners. Give personal references and work references that the owner can call and check on.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 29, 2013
In my area this would be a violation of zoning laws. Unless this is a six bedroom house, the landlord would be charged with 'stacking' and fined. Not sure if that is the case in California, but it's something to take into consideration.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 29, 2013
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