When you are looking for a new place to live and have to rent, you may notice that many landlords require an application to be filled which also seeks consent for a credit or background check. This may sound alarming at first, but you need to know that these ways to verify your identity and what you are all about can actually help you in the long run when looking for a new place to rent.
You should understand that the landlord is just being cautious, not necessarily nosy. If you feel like the landlord wants to know way too much about you, think about it from the landlord's point of view. Would you want to know whether someone has a criminal history? Would you want to know whether someone is employed and able to pay the rent before renting to them? These are naturally things you would want to know.
These are questions that can only be answered honestly with a look into the potential tenants' credit, criminal, and employment histories. Not all people are honest, unfortunately. A person who has an investment, like a rental property, needs to pull out all the stops to make sure he or she is protecting his or her investment properly. This includes double-checking to make sure potential tenants are who they say they are.
You may be protected by your landlord's insistence to know more about renters. You aren't the only one being submitted to these closer looks. Other tenants in the building have also had to pass the verifications and meet certain standards. This means that you are not likely living next to someone who has been convicted of a major crime or someone that always causes trouble.
Knowing that you will be living in a building where other people have clean histories means that you will be less worried about your own property, the safety of any children that you may have, and that the people you may eventually become friends with are upstanding people.
You can also prove that you are more reliable than other prospective renters when trying to land a new apartment or house. If you have a squeaky clean background, you are going to be top pick for a landlord who doesn't want any trouble. If you have nothing to hide about your background, then you have nothing to worry about.
If you have had trouble in the past, be completely honest with the landlord. Explain what your life has been like recently and what efforts you have made to turn your life around. Don't try to cover up anything with lies. No one will rent to you if they catch you in a lie. It's better just to come clean right away. The landlord may appreciate your truthfulness and be willing to give you a chance.
Most landlords who care about who they are renting to are also people who care about their properties. At least you know that wherever you will be renting will be well taken care of in all likelihood. A landlord is not interested in letting a house go into ruin if he or she is making sure the tenants are responsible people. You are likely going to be renting from a reliable landlord who takes renting seriously.
Remember to only sign and pay for a background verification when there is adequate documentation of what the background check is for. Just like renters, not all landlords are honest people. Ask for a receipt if you must pay for the application verification, and you may also ask for a copy or make one yourself for the consent to do a background check.