My daughter and I are relocating to the Fort Myers area. I am a Chef and am going through a divorce. I had 3

Asked by Jason, Ohio Sat Jan 24, 2009

businesses that were forced to close because of the divorce and has pretty much destroyed my credit. I want to rent in a gated type apartment but am concerned my poor credit is going to hurt me. Will I be looking at a higher security deposit, or will I not be able to rent at all? I will be looking for work as well and wondered what the area was like for foodservice, particularly chef jobs. We currently reside in Ohio, so I am definitely starting my life over and taking a bit of a leap of faith here. Any advice or help would be greatly appreciated! TYIA...

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Sarah Garrett, Agent, Fort Myers, FL
Sat Jan 24, 2009
Hi Jason, I am truly sorry that you are going through this. New surroundings do help to get a new perspective. SW Florida has a great selection of restaurants and country clubs to prospect for work. My suggestion would be to come down and make finding that job your first priority. There are many places that are working with less than perfect credit scores and wont require a huge deposit. I always like to stay optimistic and hopeful regardless of the circumstance. You may want to look in area that offers good schools and is close to shopping and churches and with over 25 years in the area I can point you in the right direction. By the way, my church offers a program for children who's parents are going through a divorce if you are interested in my help give me a call (239)464-8620. Sarah Garrett
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Mark Weber, Agent, Naples, FL
Sun Jan 25, 2009
First and foremost, I admire you for taking care of your daughter and starting over in Florida. I had a similar situation where I had to take a year off work just to prove to the courts I was as capable as her mother to care for a child. Go to or and add a Statement to your report stating the reason as being a divorce and that you take care of your daughter. You won't have to put up a "higher" security deposit but you will have to put up first, last and security. Be up front and explain to the potential landlord your situation and stress your integrity, professionalism as a chef and responsibility for taking care of your child. Renting a property is like a job interview. You need to assure the landlord that you are a stable, honest person that will pay their rent on time and not destroy their property or create problems for them. You may also want to think about moving to Naples or Estero Florida. Low rentals are available in these areas also now and Naples is a lot safer than Ft. Myers as far as crime goes. Also, Estero is a booming area due to the newest University, Florida Gulf Coast University. Naples is the most pristine city on the Gulf Coast in my opinion. I've lived all over the world and ended up coming back to Naples to raise my daughter. In your line of business there are many outstanding restaurants to hang your hat. Some of the best restaurants are Handsome Harry's, Chops City Grill (a Naples standard), and Trulux. There are many, many more. People eat out a ton in Naples and they still have the money to do so.

You may also want to contact a rental agency, I assist some clients, that caters to relocation and annual rentals. Explain your situation but stress your ability and willingness to pay on time and your professionalism. You should be able to find a great rental and home to start your new life for you and your daughter. Visit my web site to see rentals (choose "Rental" in the Property Type drop down menu) in Naples and Estero Florida. Best of luck to you and your daughter! - Mark Weber (239) 289-0799
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Bill Eckler, Agent, Venice, FL
Sun Jan 25, 2009

Since the annual rental market is presently "flooded" you should be able to find a place to rent with your circumstances. The issue of a large deposit willdepend largely on the community and owners preference.

Cape Coral has been hit particularly hard by the housing down turn and may be a good place for you to consider looking.

Good luck with your fresh start.
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Jason, , Ohio
Sat Jan 24, 2009
thanks for the answers, appreciate it. I am making a trip down on feb. 4th and staying a week. Plan on starting in Sarasota area where a friend lives and works in my field and knows people. I seem to be drawn to the Fort Myers area for some reason though, so I do plan on driving down that way and seeing what is available.

Sarah, I appreciate the offer and if we end up in that area I would most definitely take you up on the offer, thank you.

Right now the county in which I live in has an unemployment rate of 10.9 percent, and I was still able to find a job rather quickly due to my extensive backround and experience, so I am hopeful I can do the same there as well.

Thanks again!
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Marc Comisar, Agent, Bonita Springs, FL
Sat Jan 24, 2009
I do not do rentals myself but we do have rental specialists on our team. Contact our guy Matt Ligouri.......he has been a rental specialist for almost 10 years. His cell is 239-287-1480
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