Are you on the hunt for your dream house? Do you like to haggle? Do you try to negotiate with the landlord from the very beginning? Did you know that as a rental applicant you may be alienating your landlord before you even get started?
I know your goal is to find a terrific house to raise your family. You know, that perfect house and you get the BEST deal. I truly get that! We rented before we bought. I was always on the hunt for a good deal.
The thing is, as a landlord who has houses in competitive areas, I see the other side. I am getting more and more rental applicants looking to bargain and haggle. I know as a landlord I am getting to a point in this game that I am becoming a bit jaded. Those questions honestly really put me off.
I am in the middle of my busy “placement season” so I getting a lot of interesting phone calls. Since I have seen a lot of posts on different Facebook groups regarding the difficulty people are having finding a home, I thought I would share the following tips.
I don’t think these tenants realize that they might be unconsciously and negatively impacting their chances of being accepted as a rental applicant.
How to Start off on the Wrong Foot as a Rental Applicant
- Are you trying to have a landlord “hold” a house while “still” searching the other available homes?
- Have you tried to negotiate the house down in rent?
- Have you asked a landlord to leave a house empty?
- Have you tried to get a tenant to replace carpet, repaint a house, or do other upgrades?
- Have you asked a landlord to allow multiple animals on top of numerous other requests?
- Did you tell the landlord that the rental that you are applying for is the “top” of your budget?
While I totally agree it is in a tenant’s best interest to ask for the world and see what happens but you don’t realize is it often does more damage than good.
With all that being said- when it comes down to it you have to remember that a landlord is looking for a tenant they feel they can trust with their home. They want a good candidate.
So, don’t shoot yourself in the foot before you get started. While if you don’t ask you won’t receive; make sure you are asking for reasonable things.
Asking for ALL new carpet when your trying to get 2 puppies approved is not a good foot forward.
Asking a landlord if they will approve 3 cats and then asking for a discount after telling them it will be a roommate situation house, and sealing the deal with “its at the top of our budget” makes a landlord want to run for the hills!
Just remember its important to present yourself in a way that makes a landlord want to “pick” you. The landlord is interviewing you as much as you are interviewing the landlord. The experienced landlords know that screening is the most important part of this process ESPECIALLY in a tenant friendly state.
Landlords: What interesting situations have you been asked that made you run for the hills? Are you a tenant applicant? Were there any questions you wish you hadn’t asked?2