How can we come across as awesome potential tenants?
April 18, 2010 12:49 AM Subscribe
How can we make ourselves more attractive potential tenants?
posted by lwb to Home & Garden (9 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
We have been trying for months to no avail to rent a flat.
We live in Melbourne, so there is a bit of a housing-shortage thing going on - often when we go to open inspections, upwards of 100 people show up, so there's a fair bit of competition.
I realise to some extent this may be a numbers game, but we've applied for so. many. places and I'm sure there must be something we can be doing to increase our odds, but I don't really know what priorities are placed on the criteria the agents are using to determine our suitability as potential tenants, so I don't know what to focus on improving.
We're both university students (20 & 21) working about 25 hours a week. Our combined take-home income is about $800-1000 a week (my partner is salaried and takes home about $550 a week, I'm casual so my pay varies a bit more but very rarely dips under $300 a week, and is usually more). We have no consumer debt, he has excellent credit, I have no Australian credit history. We have about $15,000 in savings. I have one rental reference, but not from Australia, he has none - we've been subletting from a guy who doesn't speak enough English to either give us a reference or to understand us when we ask for the name of the landlord (the guy who translated when we moved in has since moved out.)
- I could see the reference thing being a problem, but surely it must be possible to get a rental with no references, otherwise how would anybody ever get references?
- Is my lack of credit history here holding us back? I've noticed notes on a couple application forms saying that the agency will do a credit check. Should I open a credit card or something and just not use it?
- Is it a Big Deal that we're students? I could cut my uni load back enough that I could work full time for a while, if that would make us significantly more attractive tenants.
- Are we applying for the wrong price range of properties? We've been applying for places between $220-$270/wk, and it seems to us that we can clearly cover that on our income (hell, at the cheaper end of that we could pay the whole year's rent up front). But if the real estate agencies are declining us, it'd seem they don't think so?
- My parents are willing to guarantor any lease we sign (and they own two houses, so they have the assets to back that guarantee up), but I'm not sure how I could go about making that offer in a very form-based application process.
I realise this is really long but I don't know what is important or not (in essence that is my whole question!). I am really really desperate to get out of share-housing arrangements with 9+ people in a house with one bathroom and one kitchen and one washing machine. Please help me figure out what we are doing wrong! How can we make ourselves come across as awesome tenants?