Are you getting ready to search for your next apartment? Whether you’re a first-time renter or looking for a new space with more square footage, most people start by looking for places online. After you’ve found a few options that could be a good fit, you’ll want to go ahead and fill out the rental application for each. This feels similar to applying for multiple jobs, and the principle is largely the same; the details you provide the landlord or property manager will help them get to know you a bit better before deciding if they think you’d be a trustworthy tenant. Most of these forms follow a standard format and require similar information. Today, let’s explore the fundamentals of the rental application process in more detail!
Fill Out the Application
There will be a few sections included in the rental application that focus on who you are beyond your credentials for affording monthly payments. For example, your potential landlord may be interested in references from other property owners or personal references that can speak to your character and integrity. The form may also have a space where you can share more about yourself— don’t skip it! Address any inconsistencies that might be a red flag, such as your credit score. You can also point out why you are interested in renting this particular apartment or house.
In Ontario, there are no fees required when applying to rent any residential space. These specifications are laid out in the Residential Tenancies Act, and any rental application that comes with a cost violates these laws. In other provinces, these fees are typically used to cover credit and background checks done by the landlord.
Credit and Background Checks
Not every landlord or property manager will perform a credit or background check, but it is possible that these will occur if they have numerous interested renters. A credit check will give them insight into your financial history, allowing them to see if you make payments on time and your current debt load as it relates to additional expenses you’ll need to make monthly. A background check highlights your education, employment history, and criminal record (if applicable).
Proof of Income
In addition to the above specifics, your rental application will inform your potential landlord or property manager if you make enough money to pay the set monthly rent. Typically, they will ask for a few documents to confirm proof of income, such as a letter of employment and three months’ worth of paystubs. In some cases, they may also inquire about tax returns to ensure your income is stable.
Signing the Lease
Once your application is submitted and while it is being reviewed, ensure you make time to tour the apartment in person so you can get a feel for it. Landlords are under no obligation to tell you if your rental application has been rejected, but they will let you know if it is approved. The next step is to sign the lease. Review the document carefully, and ask questions if you have concerns regarding what is expected of you, such as the day your rent is due, parking spaces, or other previously agreed upon specifics.
At Rent in Ottawa, we seek to make the rental application process easy for potential tenants. Our available units can be viewed online anytime, and we are happy to arrange in-person tours as needed. Our application form can be found in the top right corner of our site, making finding and applying for your new apartment or home a seamless experience. Narrow down your search within your budget, select the number of bedrooms you require, and choose from places available in Nepean or throughout Ottawa. Contact us for more information regarding any of our listings.