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How Do I Qualify to Lease a Single-Family Home?

Landlords look for tenants who can pay their rent on time and take good care of a home. In order to determine whether you’re a good rental candidate, you’ll be asked to prove your income and rental history. You’ll also be the subject of consumer and criminal backgrounds checks.

Each property management company or individual landlord will have their own application process. You might qualify for one home and not another owned or managed by the same person or company. Ask the landlord about specific items that might stop your application.

To avoid disqualification, spend some time getting prepared before you apply for a rental home. Follow these recommendations to streamline your experience:

Know what rental amount you can afford. Start by being realistic about your finances and budget. Take into consideration that a single-family home might require you to pay for lawn maintenance and ongoing indoor and outdoor cleaning costs.

Clean up your credit report. A large amount of debt and a history of missed payments are signs that identify you as someone who might not be able to pay their rent on time. A foreclosure, recent bankruptcy, or judgement might require a larger security deposit upfront, or in some cases disqualify you.

Keep track of income documentation. Applicants are usually required to provide paystubs for at least 2 or more months of employment. The documents must include year-to-date income totals. Before filling out the application, check with the property manager or landlord to find out how much income you need to make to qualify. If you’re self-employed, copies of your tax return may be required. Retired persons may have other documents they need to supply to complete the verification process.

List everyone on the application who will be living in the home. You can be evicted for having unauthorized people living in a rental home. If a person’s name is not on the lease, but they are living in the home you’ve rented, they are there illegally. Everyone on the lease must complete an application and qualify to be in the home.

Maintain a list of personal and landlord references. Landlords are looking for people of good character to live in their rental properties. You’ll be asked for contact information such as phone numbers and addresses. Why not keep everything current so you don’t have to go hunting for the data at the last minute?

Be prepared to pay application fees. It’s common to pay an application fee to cover a background and credit report. You’ll need to pay this right away. You may also need to pay a deposit amount to hold the property off the market while your application is being processed.

Find out what might disqualify you. Most property management companies will post details about the qualification requirements for their homes. If you have questions, call and ask for more information before applying.

Applying For A Home
Hunting for a Home to Rent? Cleanup These Documents Before You Apply

It’s not just the home rental process that requires lots of documents. From applying for financial aid to securing a job to obtaining a bank loan, proof of who you are can be requested in many situations.

Keeping up with your personal documents can make these situations happen in an easier, faster manner. Here are some ways to make the application process happen smoothly:

Review your credit report. Don’t wait until someone else requests your credit report to discover a discrepancy. You have the right to obtain a FREE copy of your credit report each year from every credit bureau (Equifax, Experian, Trans Union). To find out more about obtaining your FREE copy visit this website:

Keep your employers information updated. It’s surprising how many people don’t know the correct phone number or name of the contact person who can verify their current employment. When your employer moves department locations from one building to another or hires new employees, it’s likely that the contact information has changed. Save time by verifying your HR information before applying.

Keep track of recent paystubs and other evidence of income. Whether you are self-employed or work for a small business or corporation, proof of income is necessary to established whether you have the means to actually pay the rent. Always keep paystubs and 1099s. An “Offer of Employment Letter” can assure a company that you have indeed been hired and will have a particular amount of money at your disposal. Tax returns and bank statements are another way of verifying income.

Hold on to rental or mortgage history records. You’ll be asked for these as proof of where you lived prior to applying for a home. These items also serve to verify your history as a good renter or homeowner. You will be asked to provide the name, address, telephone and fax number, and dates of tenancy for previous landlords for a particular number of years. At Tyson, we request this information no matter what country or state you resided in.

Make sure your ID is current. Obtaining an updated driver’s license or state ID card takes time. When you don’t have a current ID, you can’t apply for a property. Property management companies don’t usually hold an application when other applicants are available and have the proper identifying documents.

Check your criminal history records. To avoid losing your application fee, you’ll want find out what offenses are grounds for denial before you apply. At Tyson, we require each tenant on the lease to have no admissions of guilt or convictions for a list of crimes that include but are not limited to illegal drug possession, violent crimes and assaults, and domestic violence. Multiple offenses of these crimes regardless of timeframe are always grounds for denial.

Always keep copies of your court records and any proof of payment if applicable. Forgotten liens and judgments can keep you from qualifying for a home rental. You’ll need to provide proof that you paid judgments or had a lien released.

Just for Tenants
Are You Prepared to Pass Our Albuquerque Rental Home Background Check?

RedDoorEvery adult applying for one of our rental properties must pass a full background check in order to be accepted as one of our tenants. Our process allows us to make sure a tenant has the financial means to pay the rent. We also need to verify whether an applicant has a criminal history.

When you apply for tenancy with Tyson Properties, we complete the following background checks:

  • Criminal
  • Credit

Our criminal background check is for all fifty states, not just New Mexico, and additional governmental agencies. 

We also verify:

  • Income

  • Rental/Mortgage History 

Some of the Reasons Your Application Can Be Rejected

This is not a complete list. See our Rental Application page for more information.

  • Incomplete or incorrect information provided on the application

  • Lack of verifiable rental or mortgage history

  • Gross income that doesn’t meet requirements (One applicant’s individual earnings must be 3 times rent amount.)

  • No proof of employment or student status

  • Unpaid judgments or tax liens

  • A felony conviction, regardless of conviction date, for an act of violence, sex crime, or illegal manufacturing or distribution of drugs will be accepted. Other criminal activity may warrant a rejection.

Our Property Managers are always happy to provide you with complete information about our application process. 


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