Do prospective renters have to submit personal information (I.e. tax returns, credit reports, etc.) before even viewing a rental?

Asked by Zuleika Cortes, Bronx, NY Sat Jun 15, 2013

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Alfredo Cast…, Agent, Bronx, NY
Sat Jun 15, 2013
It usually when you like the apartment that you submit the require paperwork.
0 votes
This is how I remember it as well. I'm worried about identity theft. What if I don't want the apt after viewing? Do they keep my info?
Flag Sat Jun 15, 2013
Gail Gladsto…, Agent, 11743, NY
Sat Jun 15, 2013
A smart Realtor will make sure that you will qualify as a tenant before spending time showing you properties.

Real Estate is our livelihood and time wasted is food taken from our families.
3 votes
Terry Farnsw…, Agent, Lisle, IL
Thu Jun 20, 2013
Depends on the market.

In hot rental markets like NY and D.C. this practice would not surprise me. The purpose is to weed the unqualified prospects out - otherwise the agent would be fielding questions and applications from people who realisitically do not have any chance at ultimately securing the property, due to their credit or financial situation. Additionally, they are trying to eliminate the "just looking" crowd...

Hope this helps!
1 vote
Maria Cipoll…, Agent, Coral Springs, FL
Thu Jun 20, 2013
There is a huge increase of rental demand in markets that include New York. Having your credit report, last two payment stubs and recommendations letters from past landlords will increase your chance to get this property. If you are working with a real estate agent, all he/she is trying to make sure that you will end up having the right place in no time.

Best of Luck,

Maria Cipollone
1 vote
Mildred Vale…, Agent, Bronx, NY
Sat Jun 15, 2013

They most certainly do, as you work with a professional there are requirements implemented by Landlords and Management companies. A professional will ask to meet with you and gather your information on apartment application. If you went on a Job Interview would the employer give you a high paying job without looking at your employment application history and credentials?

I guess you answered the question, work with a professional and make sure you stay away from Scammers and Fraud advertising! It's been known that if something sounds to good to be true theres a catch.

Always meet the agent and anyone your working with at place of business or in person.

Would you let a total stranger into your home?

Best of Luck,

Millie Valentin
Exit Realty Search
3928 E. Tremont Avenue
Bronx, NY 10465
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1 vote
Miriam Rosa, Agent, Bronx, NY
Sat Jun 15, 2013
They most certainly do. A realtor will interview the prospective renter and check their personal information before showing apartments. They must qualify as tenants.
1 vote
But what if I end up not liking the apt.? Does the realtor keep all of my personal info? Seems risky for the renter.
Flag Sat Jun 15, 2013
Miguel Abreu, Agent, Bronx, NY
Thu Jul 11, 2013
The way I handle rentals is as follows. During our first contact, the most I will ask from you is to fill out our application form. This is to get to know a little about you and what you are looking for as far as your new apartment. We can call this the "pre-screening". Through this pre-screening I can pick out apartment listings that I feel best fit you, based on what you want. The idea is to narrow down my large list of apartments listings to a few that I can show you, so that we don't waste our time. You will only be required to submit paperwork once you have seen the apartment you like and wish to move on it. You can reach me directly at (646) 339-4629 with any other questions or if you are looking to move and need assistance.
0 votes
Trevor Curran, Mortgage Broker Or Lender, Great Neck, NY
Mon Jul 8, 2013
I’m no real estate agent, just a humble Mortgage Banker, but I can give you some guidance on your search for the right rental apartment.

In my experience in the real estate trade, I’ve discovered that the consumer is best served by adopting some simple strategies, whether you’re buying a home, selling one, or renting an apartment.

First: remember that real estate agents work on commission. The better quality agents---and those with the most experience---will be testing you from the initial contact to determine if you’re serious and will commit to using their services. Why? Because real estate is like any other business. You don’t get to stand in line at the fast food restaurant just to stare at the menu without actually buying some food at one point. It’s the same idea: the experienced real estate professional has to earn a living by renting apartments to serious and qualified prospective renters.

Therefore, the smart consumer should be well-prepared and committed to respecting the real estate professional’s time. That means: know your requirements for the apartment you wish to rent in terms of location, amenities (one bedroom versus three bedrooms; elevator building or private house), and location (proximity to public transportation or need for parking), and price. If you present yourself as well-prepared you’ll have a better chance of working with an experienced agent who will work hard to find you the right apartment.

Second, start with the internet---especially stay “local.” Don’t think at real estate agent in Brooklyn can find you an apartment in Queens, or vice versa. Here on you can easily find a local professional by clicking on “FIND a PRO” at the top of this page. There you can hone in on a seasoned professional in exactly the area where you wish to rent your apartment. TRULIA provides exceptional tools to help you as a consumer understand the quality of the professional you’re working with. Read the agent’s profile; check out the recommendations from previous clients; get to know the level of experience of the agent and the areas that agent covers.

Third, real estate agents are prevented by Federal regulations from answering certain types of questions. They cannot discuss schools or school districts, crime statistics, and a variety of other issues prohibited by Fair Housing regulations. If your agent is vague when you ask certain types of questions, now you know why.

Finally, demonstrate your level of seriousness to your real estate agent. Show up on time for your appointments to view apartments. If you’re required to submit documents for the Landlord to review with your rental application, get them into your agent’s hands pronto. Not only does this help you potentially get one step ahead of a competing renter, but you’ll be viewed by the Landlord as a responsible renter. Landlords prefer responsible renters, don’t they?

I hope that helps you improve the results of your search for an apartment, and helps you with a better quality experience.

Trevor Curran
NMLS #40140
Mobile: 516-582-9181
Office: 516-829-2900
Fax: 516-829-2944
PowerHouse Solutions, Inc.
1010 Northern Blvd. Suite 234
Great Neck NY 11021
Licensed Mortgage Banker – NYS Dept. of Financial Services

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0 votes
Bruce McInty…, Agent, Bronx, NY
Sat Jun 15, 2013
Not at the point of viewings. But a lot of sellers or owners require it prior to lease signings. If you are in need of any assistance the Rental department in my office have hundreds of listings and one just might fit your need. Please give Wilson a call @ 1.347.769.4163 He is one of our sales and rental professional in my office
0 votes
I completely understand them checking my credentials after I've seen the property and confirmed I want to move forward with a lease application. The process you described is the one I'm familiar with. I will definitely give your office a call. Thank you.
Flag Sat Jun 15, 2013
Ruth and Per…, Agent, Los Gatos, CA
Sat Jun 15, 2013
Yes absolutely.

A landlord wants to be sure that a Renter has worthy credit, and has the means to pay the rent.

So yes absolutely.

Sometimes, one has had a short sale or a foreclosure on their reco, and then a landlord has to give a potential renter the benefit of the doubt by checking his earnings, credit history whether it's common for this renter to bounce checks, now a days it's not uncommon even to do a credit check for utilities.

Good luck.
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