Are There Such Things as No Credit Check Homes for Rent?'/


Finding houses for rent no credit check required

Renting a house with bad credit can be a difficult thing to do because most property management companies and landlords require a credit check before renting to you. Everyone knows the importance of a high credit score — something that can only be achieved by managing your credit responsibly over the long run, by always paying your bills on time, keeping your credit card balances as low as possible relative to your credit limits, and making sure you don’t apply for new credit too often.

But in today’s challenging times, many consumers — especially homeowners who have fallen behind on their mortgages or those who have already lost their homes to foreclosure — have seen their credit scores plummet.

For those jumping back into the rental market now, damaged credit will only add a thick layer of difficulty to an already challenging situation. Unfortunately, most landlords do a credit check in order to approve a potential tenant, so finding a place to rent with a low credit score is not going to be easy. That doesn’t mean having to move back in with family or crash on a friend’s couch, however.

Here are four tips on how to rent a house with bad credit:

Rent from an Individual

While most apartment complexes require a credit check to rent, individual landlords who are looking to rent their condo or townhouse may not perform a credit check — or may be willing to make an exception for a tenant with a bad credit score (for more on that, see our next suggestion).

Look for properties to rent on Craigslist, your local newspaper or even check with a local Realtor who specializes in rentals. Tell everyone you know that you are looking for a place to rent in case they know of a property available. When inquiring about a place to live, ask the landlord what is involved in the application process — instead of asking outright if there is a credit check. (That may send up a red flag and get the landlord to simply hang up the phone or stop replying to your emails.)

Explain Your Situation

If you are unable to find a place to rent that meets your needs without a credit check involved, consider explaining your situation to the landlord of your top choice. Since many people have poor credit these days, and often due to circumstances beyond their control, a landlord might be willing to rent to you if you can prove you will be able to pay your rent on time and show that the unfortunate credit events that damaged your score are in the past.

Write a letter detailing your situation and the reasons why the issues that caused your credit downfall are no longer relevant to your ability to pay rent. If your credit score is low because you had no job for a while, but you are currently employed, enclose a letter certifying your employment and copies of two or three of your latest pay stubs.

Or contact a previous landlord or roommate, and have them write a letter of recommendation for you, describing your payment history and vouching for your fiscal responsibility as a tenant.

Find a Roommate

Most apartment complexes require all tenants of a unit to undergo a credit check, but renting an apartment with a roommate or a single room in a house is a solution that may work in some situations. Because your share of the rent will be lower, a landlord may be more willing to accept a lower credit score, especially if your roommates have excellent credit.

Some apartment complexes allow one person to rent the unit and then sublease to roommates without adding them to the lease (and thus having them undergo a credit check).

The most important thing if you are going this route is to be upfront and honest about your situation with your potential roommates, so there are no surprises when going through the application process.

Find a Co-Signer

As a last resort, consider asking a family member or close friend to co-sign your lease. Keep in mind, this is a huge favor. You are asking them to assume financial responsibility for the apartment if you do not pay your rent. Only go this route if you are positive that you can afford to pay the rent without any issues and that the co-signing arrangement will not affect your relationship with the person, or their own credit rating.

Houses for rent with bad credit are possible to obtain, just try to follow these simple tips and you should be able to find a home that meets your needs.  Once you find your new home, make a conscious effort to always pay on time: your rent, as well as all other bills. With time, attention and fiscal responsibility, you can repair your credit so that next time your home search will be easier.

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Published August 23, 2011 Updated: February 29, 2016
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11 responses to “Are There Such Things as No Credit Check Homes for Rent?”

  1. Jan Adámek says:

    Just wondering if i can rent a house with bad credit? Is it any different than renting an apartment for example? Usually are renters more strict when it comes to a house?

    • Mark Eschelman says:

      I agree with Kimi, trying to rent a house with bad credit is a bit more difficult. I am currently renting a house and the homeowner had found an agent to help them find someone with a certain credit score, among other qualities.

    • Brandon Malik says:

      Jan- You can even rent homes with no credit check! Same rules apply. If you know the homeowner or can explain your situation and they can trust you, it should work out in my opinion.

  2. Kimi Galesloot says:

    Generally, the credit score to rent a house is determined by the renter. For a house I think it is generally stricter as it would be more expensive – but then again it depends on who is renting it. If the people feel like you are reliable they might let you off the hook with a bad credit score, if that is what you have.

  3. Doug B. says:

    I’m from Highland Park Michigan and there are homes for rent in Michigan with no credit check. I suppose it depends on where ya live

    • Josie says:

      It definitely depends. I live in PA and homes for rent in philadelphia no credit check required are pretty hard to come by. It is a competitive market and potential renters are using everything and anything they can to get a leg up on the competition. This means that they will show their credit score to landlords even if they aren’t asked for it – but once they do the landlord will likely pick them over someone who doesn’t have a good credit score or someone who isn’t willing to show it.

  4. Jessica Delgadillo says:

    Does anyone know if there are townhomes for rent no credit check? I have been looking around and found a wonderful townhouse for my family but my credit isn’t great and would reflect badly.

  5. Amy S. says:

    I’m looking for some homes for rent in Texas no credit check required and my sis is in a similar situation, she’s looking for homes for rent in Georgia with no credit check. We don’t have credit cause nobody told us its something we needed so we got none. If anyone knows we would appreciate it a lot thanks.

  6. Kitty Patel says:

    I think there is often no credit check homes for rent in Atlanta, so folks should consider renting here if credit is an issue. Particularly, there is no credit check townhomes for rent here, so just let me know if you’re interested!

    • Erika says:

      That’s true, but it’s not the whole story. There are Atlanta homes for rent no credit check necessary, but just now that these houses aren’t going to be in the best neighborhoods and they aren’t always in the best condition. As an up-and-coming metropolitan city, Atlanta’s housing market is booming. The average credit score needed to rent a house is 680 or above.

  7. Joe says:

    Everyone always wants to know what is good credit score for home loan, but can you get a home loan if you are just renting? For example, I am moving to a new state for my job and I need a place to live, but I haven’t started work yet so I haven’t been paid. I don’t think I have enough money at the moment to start renting a home, but I know I will once I get my first few paychecks. Can I get a home loan to help me out at the beginning?

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