If you’ve been evicted before and you’re searching for a new apartment, it can be a nerve-wracking experience. Evictions show up on your credit report, which is usually checked by landlords prior to renting an apartment to a new resident. This means that you won’t be able to hide the fact that you’ve been evicted before on any of your rental applications.
But just because you’ve been evicted before doesn’t mean that you’ll never have a home again! While things may be slightly more difficult for you when compared to renters with no prior evictions, there are ways you can go about trying to rent again where your prior record may not have as strong of a pull as you think.
In this article, we’ll talk about a few ways you can go about trying to rent again after facing an eviction.
Table of Contents
When you sign a lease agreement, there are various terms that both parties agree upon for the duration of your tenancy at that particular residence. Different management companies usually have different policies, but a resident legally must abide by these policies to be able to remain in the apartment.
If a resident fails to abide by the agreed-upon terms—such as failing to pay rent on time, for example—legal action can be taken on the part of the landlord to reclaim the property. If this comes down to a formal eviction process—meaning you had to show up to court—it will stay listed on your credit file for up to seven years.
However, there are some things you can do to help cushion the blow an eviction can have on your future rental prospects. This can be done by trying out the following suggestions:
- Find a Co-Signer
- Think About Getting a Roommate
- Rent Privately
In the following sections, we’ll talk about each of these options a bit more in depth to see if any of them might be good options for you!
Find a Co-Signer
While it may be tricky to find someone to put their name and credit on the line for you if they know you have a history of rental trouble if you can swing it, finding someone to co-sign for you can help to assuage the fears of a potential landlord.
That’s because when someone co-signs on an apartment for someone else, it means that they are taking full legal responsibility to pay for the rent in the case where you would be unable to do so. This also means that, should you fail to be able to meet your rental agreements again, this person will also suffer in terms of their credit being affected.
If you’re hoping to find someone to co-sign on an apartment for you, then you better know that you’ll be able to uphold your end of the agreement so that your co-signer won’t have to be pulled through the mud along with you.
People often turn to their parents, siblings, friends, or grandparents to help them co-sign for things like apartments. If you have people like this available in your life, then it’s worth a shot to ask them to see if they would be willing to co-sign on a new apartment for you.
Think About Getting a Roommate
Getting a roommate is one of the most cost-effective things you can do if you’re looking to find a new place after getting evicted from your last one.
Not only will having someone else living with you lower your monthly costs so you won’t have to shoulder the entire burden alone but having someone with good credit put the lease in their name will almost skirt around the entire problem for you.
This is because, when renting, a landlord generally only runs the credit of the person whose name the lease is in. So not only would you not have to worry about your new landlord even seeing your prior eviction, but living with someone else and having them put the lease in their name also means that you get the time to rebuild both your rental history and your credit—putting you in the perfect position to get your life back on track.
While many properties out there are run by management companies, you may find that you fare better trying to rent from a private property owner when you have an eviction on your record.
Corporate-owned rental communities are just that—businesses. As such, they are usually much less personal and more black-and-white in their approach. If they see an eviction on your record, they’ll simply deny your application.
A private landlord may be more willing to sit down for a rental interview with you and hear you out and is also more likely to follow up with your personal references to get a better understanding of who you are as a person instead of just on paper.
If you need help connecting to a private landlord, or just have other questions or concerns regarding your housing prospects, you can always use the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to connect with a housing counselor to help you with getting advice and planning your next steps.
At the end of the day, while it may seem impossible to rent again after going through an eviction, it doesn’t mean you’ll never find another place to live!
While going through a formal eviction process will stay on your credit report for up to 7 years, there are things you can do to lessen the impact an eviction may have on a potential landlord.
Things like finding a co-signer, living with a roommate, or renting from private landlords over commercial management companies are all solid routes to try if you’re trying to find a new apartment after being evicted from your last one.
As long as you’re doing what you need to do to get back on your feet and are prepared to make some concessions as you’re getting things back together (saving money to pay for multiple months upfront or offering to sign a month-to-month lease, for example), you’ll soon be well on your way to finding a new place to call home!