If you are considering venturing into the world of leasing a home or apartment here in the Austin area, here are some facts and also some tips/tricks to getting you into that home you want!

MYTH: You shouldn’t use a real estate agent to assist you because they will cost you extra money.

THIS IS FALSE! Using a Realtor is 100% free to you! You never pay any Realtor’s fees: the owner of the home does. Use an agent for all their knowledge to help guide you through the often tedious and time consuming application process. They have the best access to time-sensitive listings and can quickly set up showings for you to see the home. Oftentimes people research for lease listings online, but by the time they want to see the home, it’s already gone. Using a real estate agent who has access to the up-to-date MLS system is a much more quick and efficient way to see a home sooner which increase your chances that it will be yours!

FACT: Know your credit. There are many free websites to check your score if you’re not quite sure where you land on the scale. Most landlords will require a score above 540. If your score is below this marker, you may want to consider taking some time to work on your credit before potentially wasting deposit fees on homes that you are just not qualified for. In addition to the credit check, a background check will also be run on you. 

FACT: Be prepared with at LEAST 2 months of paystubs or bank statements (if you are self-employed). These will need to be submitted, along with your application and application fees that are collected. Please note that you are required to make at least 2.5 to 3 times the rent, in income, per month. 

FACT: Pet breeds MATTER! If you have pets, please know the weight and breeds. "Mixed breed" will not count, as you must be specific. Many homeowners have breed and size limitations, so know what you have. Be prepared to provide vet paperwork, if necessary.  Properties will generally also require a separate pet deposit, in addition to the regular security deposit.  Rules and deposits are specific to each listing and the deposit amounts vary.

We hope that this information is of value to you. Prosper Properties believes in equal housing opportunities for everyone, and understands that every situation is unique. Each application process is different and will be evaluated by each of the criteria above, and possibly more. If you need a reliable Realtor to help assist you, or to clarify any of the information above, please call!

Image courtesy of Mark Moz