It's hard finding a rental property, we know. Often it feels like agents won't give you a chance, or it feels like you only just see a property for lease and 10 second later it's gone! So that's why we've put together this Blog for you to help you prepare your rental application so it really stands out.
"We know that our business wouldn't exist if we didn't have tenants, so we'd love to secure as many good quality tenants as possible – and if you're one of them, we want you!"
Tip 1 : Set Up Property Alerts On Our Website
The best way to become familiar with the newest rental properties is to set up property alerts using these main websites; We Connect Property Database https://www.weconnectproperty.com.au/rental-finder, www.RealEstate.com.au and www.Domain.com.au.
These alerts allow you to specify the type of property you’re looking for, the budget you’re searching within, and the suburbs you’re interested in. The alerts will then come to your inbox on the days/times that you select and you’ll be notified of new properties for rent the moment they appear online. This will keep you ahead of the market, allow you to become familiar with your local rental market and avoid you having to log onto each website daily (or several times each day) to check if there are new rental properties available.
Tip 2: Collect Rental Applications and Setup Online Applications
When you find a rental property you’re interested in, you’ll be asked to submit a rental application for the property. These rental applications are very detailed and vary between real estate agencies. As you prepare to find your next rental property, it’s useful for you to become familiar with the types of information an agent will want you to provide on your rental application.
Common requests for information include:
- All your personal details (name, address, date of birth, email, phone numbers, etc.).
- Current home address, previous home address (and perhaps the address before that).
- Current employment details (including contact details for your employer so that your employment can be confirmed).
- Proof of income (this might include payslips if you're working; Centrelink statements, if you're receiving benefits; proof of any investments, etc.).
- Various references and referees (but we'll talk more about that later).
Some Agency's use Online Applications like TenantOption.com.au and 1form, so set them us so you are ready.
Tip 3: Check Your Current Rental History
If you’re renting at the moment, it’s wise to request a copy of your current rental ledger from your current property manager. This is a very important document, and it’s useful for you to view this document before submitting it with any other rental application. The things to check on this document are:
- The date of each rent payment. You need to ensure that you have a history of paying your rent at the same time each week, fortnight or month (depending on what was decided at the beginning of your tenancy).
- The amount of each rent payment. This amount should be the exact weekly, fortnightly or month rent, as outlined on your tenancy agreement. You’ll need to show that you paid the exact amount of rent legally required each week.
- The “paid to” date. This date indicates where your rent is paid to each week, fortnight or month. You need to ensure that your rent is always 7-14 days in advance at all times (depending on what is specified on your tenancy agreement).
- Check for any “rent arrears” reminders, notes or occurrences in your ledger. If you’ve fallen behind in your rent at any time, this may impact your ability to rent again in the future.
Tip 4: Provide Identification
Make sure you provided at least 3 forms of ID include at least 1 with a Photo. Here is a list of some types of documents you could provide:-
- Australian Passport
- Australian Drivers License
- Australian Learners Permit
- International Passport
- Proof of Age Card
- Australian Citizen Certificate
- Australian Bank/Credit Card
- Residential Tenancy Agreement/rent ledger
- Australian Birth Certificate
- Medicare/Health Card
- Utility Bill (less than 3 months old)
- Vehicle Registration
Every agency is different so please contact them to see what they require.
Tip 5 : Collect Your Supporting Documents.
Along with your identification and rental ledger, you’ll need to provide other supporting documents. Each agency will ask for slightly different documents, but some we regularly ask for are:
Proof of Income
This can be a number of documents:
- Payslips from your current employer for the last 3 pay cycles
- Bank statements showing regular wage deposits from your employer
- A letter confirming your wages from your employer
- If self employed your last two Business Activity Statements (self employed/company director)
- Your last Company Financial Statements
- A letter confirming your personal income from your accountant
Current/Previous Rental History
This can include a number of items:
- Full details (including phone and email details) for your current landlord or managing agent
- Full rental ledger
- Current Residential Tenancy Agreement
- Rent receipts
- Written rental reference from your current landlord
- Proof of property ownership (if you currently live in your own property)
- Full details (including phone and email details) for the agent who is selling/has sold your own property
- Full details (including phone and email details) for the property manager who is managing your investment property
- Full details of Personal/character written references on the section provided.
An Extra Note On Character References
If you are required to provide character references to support your rental application, we suggest your character references come from:
- Long term family friends – people who have known you since you were a child, or have known your parents or guardians for many years
- Teachers from school, TAFE and University
- Employers, if you currently have or previously had a job
The written character references should contain the following points:
- The relationship between you and the person providing the reference
- How long they’ve known you
- How they’ve found you to behave
- If they feel you’d be a reliable tenant
- Contact details, should your property manager wish to phone them
Tip 6: Submitting Your Application - A Fully Completed Application Is Imperative
Once you have the application form (physical or online) complete it as quickly as possible. So often, properties are leased very quickly because tenants are organized and submit their application forms quickly. Be sure to be one of the fastest tenants by submitting your application in full and as quick as possible.
Each real estate agency will have a slightly different way of accepting application forms. So contact the property manager ask about their preferred application process.
At We Connect Property we ask you to apply BEFORE to inspect the property, this way we are making sure you meet the requirements for the property as per the owner requests. Once we have received all the information we will invite you to a PRIVATE open. If you like it the application will be forwarded to the owner for their review and instructions.
Remember a few things:
- Complete the application form in full – don’t leave anything out.
- Submit all your supporting documents as part of your application (identification, proof of income, references, etc.).
- Follow up with the property manager on the phone to make sure they’ve received the full application and to check if there’s anything else you need to do.
- Ask the property manager how long the application process is likely to take and follow up with a phone call after that time period to find out if your application was successful.
- You may not get approved for the first property you apply for, so be consistent until you secure your first rental property.
Tip 7: Attending Rental Inspections.
Once it’s time to attend inspections of rental properties, there are a few etiquette suggestions that are useful to keep in mind.
Present well for the inspection. While, you don’t need to dress like you’re attending a job interview, we suggest you dress in a tidy manner, be clean, have a general neat appearance. You don’t get a second chance at a first impression.
It’s likely that the property you’re inspecting is someone else’s home currently. So please be respectful to them and their belongings.
When you meet with the property manager showing you through the property, be sure to introduce yourself and any other people who have joined you for the inspection. If the property manager has time, this is also a great opportunity to explain your situation, and request any information from the property manager that might assist you in preparing your application.
Remember, if you ever need assistance or more information on how to make your application stand out, we’re always happy to offer advice, even if we don’t have a property you’re interested in on our books at the time.