Rentals in Evanston>Question Details

Alexandrea, Renter in Evanston, IL

My credit score is 565, no evictions no brankrupcy would i be able to rent an apartment?

Asked by Alexandrea, Evanston, IL Thu Mar 1, 2012

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As a landlord and property manager in the Western Suburbs, I try not to get too distracted by the credit score. Things like medical bills and unpaid parking tickets may drag down a credit score and not have any influence on someone's ability to pay their rent. A potential tenant's job history and rental history are much more relevant than a credit score in my opinion. However, issues like evictions or unpaid utilities are usually deal-breakers for me. As a last resort you can always offer the landlord a larger security deposit or a co-signor if possible.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Mar 1, 2012
Landlords are interested in one thing, getting the rent in full and on time every time. I also have my landlords check criminal history, but if you have no eviction history, no criminal history and can show that you pay your bills, your actual score is not so much of an issue. I have gotten landlords to accept tenants will low credit scores, perhaps due to a short sale or foreclosure, by pointing out that, while they may have had difficulty paying a mortgage for one reason or another, the rest of their credit history shows a record of paying their bills on time. It's not easy, the way the credit scoring agencies record missed mortgage payments is a shame, but it can be done even in those circumstances. If you are still worried, get references. It all adds up and it will all be helpful.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Mar 1, 2012
In our local market, if you are providing the full picture, this would not likely cause a problem. If the rent on the unit you're seeking is less than 30% of your gross income and you can show consistency of employment, you'd be fine. Some property managers may ask for a cosigner if, let's say, you had a consistently shaky payment history, or you are just starting your first job. Our office works directly with property managers and we routinely find apartments for people in your situation.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 5, 2012
The answer to your question really depends on the has been mentioned, they are interested in two you pay your rent on time, and do you take care of the property. For me, the rental history is really more important than a credit score. A letter/reference from prior landlords would carry a lor of weight.

Good luck with your search!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Mar 1, 2012
As a landlord, I use a scoring system that incorporates credit score, rental history, criminal background, job history, and debt vs income. So, if somebody is strong in most other areas but weak in credit, they are still able to qualify. Many landlords use something similar. Be honest with your potential landlord, explain why you have bad credit, and explain how you are capable of being dependable with rent.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Mar 1, 2012
Letters of recommendation, W2 or pay stubs and possible explanation of the reason your FICO score is not so good may help.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Mar 1, 2012
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