When dealing with less than perfect credit and looking to rent a new place, the advise I give my clients is to write a brief note to the potential landlord the reason for the credit issues. This way when you submit the application the landlord knows why your credit is not up to par and they can see its not just because you don't care, it shows that there was a issue such as job loss, divorce, illness, natural disaster as Hurricane Sandy or what ever the reasons and you have rectified the issues that held you back and are trying to get back on track.
As long as your credit is getting better and your making the right moves to clear your name they are more willing to work with you, as we have all had our falls on hard times, and they could be more willing to give you a chance.
Hope this helps!
Good luck to you!