Rentals in Zion>Question Details

Denise, Renter in Zion, IL

My credit is not so good. I have never been evicted or had anything reposessed. Is it the credit score and/or the actual report that matters most?

Asked by Denise, Zion, IL Wed Dec 8, 2010

Renting home, credit check

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Hi Denise,

While I can't disagree with anything my colleagues have said here, there are a few other things you should consider also.

There are different types of debt. And if a landlord is looking at a credit report, they're probably factoring what kind of debt you have and not just your score alone. Mortgage lenders do the same thing. But in the present market, even the slightest blemishes are preventing folks from qualifying for a loan easily.

Unlike a mortgage lender, who doesn't really care, a landlord may be open to hearing your story. So the important thing for you to do is be prepared. Know what's on your credit report and be prepared to talk about it. Since, in some cases, you may not even get in front of the decision maker directly, it might also be a good idea to prepare a cover letter explaining any issues you have on your credit.

Good luck. Feel free to contact me if you have any questions.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 9, 2010
Denise -

Unfortunately, credit score is king. To get a loan these days, you usually need at least 620 credit score minimum. It is the only thing that matters and has forced many people into rentals instead of purchase. However, credit is not permanent. You can correct it with some easy steps in just a few months. I have a mortgage lender who will give you a blueprint on how to fix your credit and there is no cost to you to find out.

Email me at and I will give you his information.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 9, 2010
Hi Denise,

Your credit score is essentially your credit report converted into a number. It's a way to standardize everyone's credit worthiness so that lenders are able to compare one borrower to the next. If you aren't able to get a rental under your name, you might try having a family member or friend with stronger credit co-sign the lease.

Hope that helps,
Web Reference:
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 9, 2010
When I have a rental home listing for rent, the owner wants a credit score report and often a background check as well including verification of employment. It can be as hard to rent a house as to get a mortgage! That said, if there is a good reason for the credit score being low, like medical bills, or recent divorce and the person makes good money and has references from previous landlord the new landlord might not hold a credit score under 650 against you. if you are below 600 you can approach landlord with double deposit. If you have a persistent pattern of not paying cable bills, utilities and have outstanding judgements, apartment buildings might be the way to go. Often the contract they use has a faster eviction process spelled out in the lease and so they are willing to take the risk of someone moving in and never paying rent.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 24, 2011
Thank you all for your input. I am initially looking to rent a home. I have saw a few on here that interest me. I have recently checked my score/ report and found that I have a low score. I wanted to know how much this affects renting and want to start making repairs.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 9, 2010
Hi Denise,

Years ago the mortgage company would run your credit and make a decision. If there were issues with your credit they would ask for a "Letter of Explination". If the explination sounded good then they would approve a loan. In todays world of getting a loan the Credit Score is the credit report. You can try to explain all day long with an issue and they don't care. But again, are you trying to obtain a mortgage or trying to get a rental application accepted. You need to be more detailed.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 9, 2010
If you are looking to buy, yes credit scores do matter, therefore if yours needs improvement, do consider repairing it as much as possible. If looking to rent, it's up to the individual landlord and what he/she is comfortable with.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 9, 2010
It really depends on what you're trying to do. Are you looking to buy or rent. The score is very important, but the score can change quickly if you do some things right. Do you want to talk to someone about this?

Mike Stodola
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 9, 2010
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