Will I Be Able to Rent a House or Apartment After North Carolina Bankruptcy? Skip to main content

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Will I Be Able to Rent a House or Apartment After North Carolina Bankruptcy?


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Looking for a place to rent after NC bankruptcy?

Image Source: Flickr User turkeychik

It is becoming more common for landlords to run a credit check before they agree to renting a house or apartment to someone. Knowing this, you might worry you won’t be able to find a place to live in North Carolina after your bankrupcty. Whether your credit report becomes a factor in their rental decisions depends on the type of landlord and what their background checks entail. Here’s what you need to know.

Some Landlords Just Want Verification of Income

In some cases, the landlord just wants assurance that you can pay your monthly rent. Showing pay stubs or your bank statement can prove you have the financial means to meet your obligations. Larger landlords—like a property management firm running several apartment complexes—might want more evidence and request a credit check.

Substantiating a record of past rental responsibility can help. If you rented a home or apartment before, you could provide a letter of reference from a prior landlord stating that you were a responsible tenant and paid your monthly rent on time. For an individual landlord, this might be enough to get you a “yes” on your rental application.

Some Landlords Require a Credit Check

Just because you have a bankruptcy on your credit report does not mean you’ll be turned down for a rental property. In fact, in many situations, a bankruptcy is better than a credit report that shows lots of past-due and delinquent accounts, which will definitely make you look like a poor potential tenant. With many pre-employment credit checks, bankruptcy will serve you better than bad credit.

Rental applications are often the same way. Smaller landlord firms or individual landlords might not ask for a credit check at all but larger ones might. But if you make more than enough money to cover the rent and can provide a rental reference, that could sway a potential landlord to take a chance on you. Filing bankruptcy shows you are making a fresh start and trying to do better.

Other Options to Sway a Potential Landlord

There are other factors that come into play when getting a landlord to lease an apartment or home to you after bankruptcy. For instance, you could offer to put down a larger deposit prior to move-in to sway them. You could also offer to pay a bit more each month to go into an escrow account that can be held as insurance against rent payment problems.

You may also be able to offer an explanation of your bankruptcy that could help convince a potential landlord decide to rent to you. For instance, if you had a period of unemployment that caused your financial problems and you now have steady employment, explaining the full situation could make a big difference. Alternately, if an illness caused your financial problems, that’s simple enough to explain.

Consider Multiple Applications

If you are worried about your ability to obtain rental property, you might want to submit applications to more than one property. Check and see what background information will be gathered by the potential landlord, look for inidividual landlords or small businesses, and be prepared with an explanation of why you decided to file bankruptcy.

Applying to rent more than one property can increase your odds of getting at least one application approved. Also, consider applying for a rental property that is less expensive than what your budget allows. If a potential landlord sees your income is far above what’s needed to pay the rent, they’re more likely to approve you. Then, later, you can always move into a larger or more expensive property. Bankruptcy doesn't have to get in your way of renting a good home. 

To find out more about the debt relief offered by North Carolina bankruptcy, contact the Law Offices of John T. Orcutt. Call +1-919-646-2654 now for a free consultation at one of our locations in Raleigh, Durham, Fayetteville, Wilson, Greensboro, Garner or Wilmington.

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