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Community Curious NYC

Advice from a Real Estate Agent: How to find an apartment with less than perfect credentials


Are you ready to move to a nicer apartment? In need to urgently find a place to live, ANY place? Have you found yourself in a rut with a less than perfect credit score or salary?

Then read on!

NYC is notoriously known for being an uber expensive city, but more than that the rental laws do not make it easy for you to find, and more importantly get approved for that perfect place you’ve been dreaming about.

As mentioned in my previous article “How to find an apartment during the summer months in NYC”, the standard is a minimum 700 credit score (on a 0-800 score rating) and 40x the rent.

So what is one to do, if they are slightly or even significantly below the income guidelines and/or credit?

Is it even remotely a possibility to find an apartment in NYC?

These questions linger each passing day in renters minds as they joyously relocate to NYC in hope of finding the perfect place, only to discover that they were DENIED and do not qualify.

As anything in life, there is always a solution, you just have to be creative and think outside the box.

So, here are my TOP 3 Solutions to help you find that ideal apartment:

  1. GUARANTOR- if you are lacking in income or credit this is by far the EASIER and quickest option to get approved. Who is a guarantor exactly, you ask? A guarantor is a friend or relative who is willing to take responsibility for the payment of your apartment in case you are unable to pay.

This person must make double what you would (so 80x the rent/year in income) AND must have a credit score over 700. They will be required to submit all of their financial documents just as you would. Essentially they are guaranteeing in paying for the apartment- and that’s the bottom line!

Of course your name is on the lease so whatever agreement you have with your guarantor is a separate matter in itself.

F.Y.I – Many landlords will accept guarantors but not ALL, so check with the individual apartment you are interested in.

  1. OPTION 2: A very common alternative to a guarantor: paying One year or six months up front. Is it a lot of cash? Absolutely! However, many landlords are willing to accept such an option because they are receiving a lump sum payment. And they like that!


3. OPTION 3: If you do not have a guarantor and are strapped for cash, the next best option is to carouse   Craigslist. Yes, Craigslist! It is still the #1 website for apartment rentals and I’ll let you on a little secret! Landlords do post there directly! So, it is possible to find a more private landlord who you can meet, have him/her appeal to your situation, perhaps even be sympathetic to your under qualifications.

I don’t guarantee that he will give you the apartment for free (not likely), but he might work with your credit/income situation.

Best of luck in this difficult task of apartment searching!

Cover image via: www.ny.curbed.com



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