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The Perils Of Renting An Apartment When Your Credit Score Is Low


These days, complaining about how your credit score does not enable you to qualify for a mortgage loan sounds like a humblebrag.  If your credit score is high enough to pass muster with the landlords of reputable rental properties, then you are in a better financial position than most people.  A low credit score can place obstacles in front of you that appear well before you consider trying to buy a house.  Your credit score can even make it harder for you to rent an apartment.  In South Florida, where rents are high and state law gives landlords free rein to charge tenants almost any amount they choose, the rental housing market is a perfect example of how being poor is expensive.  Of course, credit scores tend to increase slowly and gradually, so you might be a much more desirable and less risky tenant than your credit score shows.  If you need to improve your credit score quickly so you can qualify to rent an apartment, contact a Boca Raton credit repair lawyer.

Landlords Can Charge You Extortionate Security Deposits

In a perfect world, security deposits for renting an apartment would not exceed the cost of one month’s rent, and landlords would always refund them, unless the tenant completely trashed the place.  In reality, landlords can adjust the required security deposit based on the applicant’s credit score.  Unflappable optimists might argue that paying an expensive security deposit is better than having a landlord completely refuse to rent you an apartment.  Some states have laws that limit the maximum allowable security deposit for apartment rentals (the limit is usually the equivalent of two months’ rent), but Florida has no such restrictions.  In theory, a landlord could make tenants with low credit scores pay six-figure security deposits as a prerequisite to renting.

Landlords That Don’t Care About Your Credit Score Might Be Shady

Unaffordable security deposits may deter applicants with low credit scores from renting units at professionally managed properties.  These tenants may choose to rent from Mom-and-Pop landlords who do not require a credit score check, thinking it is their only option.  Less formal rental agreements can be affordable and convenient for all parties involved, but they can also leave tenants vulnerable.  There are no guarantees about the property being maintained, and disputes over rent payments can easily turn ugly.

How to Rent an Apartment After a Financial Hardship

If your credit score is not high enough to qualify to rent an apartment in the building of your choice, there are things you can do to improve your application.  Submit as much financial documentation as you can, including pay stub records, showing that you have a steady income and are able to pay rent; your credit score is due to old debts that still show up on your credit report.  If possible, you can also offer to pay a higher deposit than what the landlord requests.

Contact a South Florida Debt Lawyer About Improving Your Credit Score

A South Florida debt lawyer can help you improve your credit score, making it easier to qualify for apartment leases and home mortgage loans.  Contact Nowack & Olson, PLLC in Boca Raton, Florida to discuss your case.



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