It’s no secret: the housing market is tight. Rental vacancy in Boise reached 3.12% by the end of 2019’s first quarter, meaning the number of openings available for renters presents a narrow window of opportunity for finding that next home or apartment.
With rental vacancy as low as it is in the Boise metropolitan area and the cost of rent climbing, potential renters should prepare themselves for getting that return phone call or scheduling that walk-through with these 5 tips for preparation and presentation:
Understand the market.
Staying informed about the state of the rental market comes with the territory of finding and applying for rentals, but you should know what to expect when it comes to costs and application fees. We Know Boise reported an average rent in the Boise Metro area of $1,366 as of March 2019, with $1,469 being the average for single-family homes and $1,029 for multifamily units. Landlords typically look for a monthly rent-to-income ratio of about 30%—or a monthly household income of around $4,555 in the Treasure Valley—but be sure to know the exact requirements for the property you are applying to.
In Idaho, there are no laws regarding what landlords can charge for application fees. While a national average is around $30, this can vary depending on the property. Save money by determining your qualifications before applying, if possible.
Build your credit.
This is an important step that shows landlords your financial responsibility, though it can take time. Make sure your on-time payments make it to your credit report, and make payments on-time as often as you can.
Perhaps the best way to get a landlord’s attention is to have your deposit and at least first month’s rent on hand, ready to go. Property owners may move on to another candidate if they have to wait for a deposit, and with Boise’s marginal vacancy rates and an average of 3.54 applications to place a tenant, competition is hot. Also, set aside some money as often as possible for rental application fees, again ensuring your qualification before you apply.
Write a rental resume.
Giving your potential landlord all the information they need about you in a clear, concise, and professional manner can help guarantee that lease. A rental resume detailing employment, income, rental history, and relevant references demonstrates professionalism and care from the beginning, while also giving you a handy tool for quick reference when filling out rental applications.
Maintain a standard of professionalism and honesty.
First impressions can go a long way to establishing trust and good relationships. Maintain professionalism at every point of communication with a potential landlord to always present the best version of yourself. If there is something on your record like a past eviction when looking for that new place, be open with the manager about your situation. Here, a rental resume with references and a large deposit on hand will also be especially useful in nailing down that lease.
Dealing with a past eviction?
The best thing any prospective renter can do when dealing with a past eviction is to make sure their credit score is in good standing and establish a record of on-time payments. Some landlords are willing to expunge bad records when they have been fully compensated for any damages, but evictions will disappear off public record and credit histories after 7 years, regardless. In the meantime, on-time payments, on-hand deposits and professional, responsible conduct are key in achieving rental opportunities in the Treasure Valley.
As always, we at 208.properties love to receive your comments and feedback. We want to hear your stories of finding rentals and what it took to finally lease the right place. What would you recommend as strategies for getting a reply from potential landlords? Landlords, how can potential tenants stand out? Please find us on social media and share your thoughts, comment, or questions about the best ways to get a lease in the Treasure Valley’s competitive rental market. Thank you.
By: Jake Nuttal