Renting Process


Before you begin looking for an apartment, room, or house to rent, you should determine how much money you can afford to pay per month for rent. Generally, housing experts recommend that you use 25% to 30% of your income towards your rent cost. It is also important to determine the size of the dwelling you will need, for example, a studio, one bedroom, two bedroom, etc. Other factors to consider are whether it is important for you to live near your work, family, doctor, school, etc. Furthermore, you will need to think about whether it is important that your housing be located near a bus line, grocery store, hospital, bank, or other businesses. This will depend on your specific needs, transportation capabilities, etc.


Vacancy Rates


Due to the very low vacancy rates in New York City it is very important to be prepared and organized to win an apartment.  Documents you should readily have available:


  • W2 statement
  • Tax returns for past two years
  • Employer pay stubs 
  • Letter of employment (very important for new hires) 
  • Recent Bank Statements              
  • Government issued I.D.


Credit Reports

The quest to find the perfect apartment in the right price range is no small feat. One thing you can do as a savvy apartment hunter to streamline the process is to obtain a copy of your credit report before you even start scanning the papers for the ideal apartment.

These days, most responsible landlords review the credit reports of all potential tenants. Understandably, they want to make sure the people they rent to have clean financial histories. Obviously, the better your credit report, the more likely you will be to pay the rent on time.

Obtaining a credit report before apartment shopping will help avoid any unwelcome surprises when it comes time to negotiate a lease. Knowing what’s in your credit report can help you address and explain any errors or glitches with a landlord before the landlord dismisses you as an unworthy tenant. You should also be prepared to explain any specific late payments on your credit report in case the landlord inquires about them.

Upon reviewing your credit report, if you discover that your credit is less than desirable, it may be a good idea for you to submit a letter of explanation along with your application to rent. The letter should address and explain any major issues in your credit report, such as:

  • Late payments
  • Exorbitant debt
  • Bankruptcies
  • Foreclosure

Obtaining and reviewing your credit report can help you land the apartment you really want, and it can get the tenant/landlord relationship off to a positive start.




If you do not economically qualify for the apartment, or if you have experienced past credit problems, you may elect to have the rental payments guaranteed by the guarantor of your choice. To qualify, the guarantor must be meet certain economic standards, have excellent credit, and must sign a standard form guarantee.

The guarantor will be required to submit a government issued photo identification showing their signature (which must match the signature on the signed guarantee) and may be called at their residence or place of work for identity verification.  Usually their signature needs to be verified by a notary.