When you are searching for a rental property it is good to have your documents in place so that you are ready to apply for a property as soon as you find one you like.
There are some differences in what property managers will want from you, but mostly you will need to provide the following for each adult who will be living at the property.
- a current credit report
- details of income
In addition, property managers will generally not accept your application unless you, or someone on your behalf, has inspected the property. If you are not in Tasmania and are unable to view any properties, the we can do that for you. We can either undertake the property search for you or can inspect just one or two properties for you once you are confident you have found your new home.
Many agents will only accept an application if you have attached a recent credit report for each person. The application form provided by the agent will make it clear if this is required.
If you are Tasmanian you need to obtain your credit report from the Tasmanian Collection Services.
If you are from elsewhere in Australia you can obtain your credit report from a number of agencies. My Credit File provides a free copy of your credit file within 10 business days, or you can pay for a one day service. Dun and Bradstreet offer a similar service.
For those moving from overseas and wishing to rent property you will need to provide a report from your home country if possible and details of income and assets.
You will be required to provide contact details for both personal and business referees. In addition, if you have rented previously you need to include the contact details of the previous landlord or property manager.
If you have not rented for a long time (or ever) then alternatively provide other strong references. For example from the real estate agent who may have sold your most recent home or who manages an investment property for you, and perhaps from your accountant. Agents are used to dealing with people who have not rented and will usually suggest alternative referees for you to provide.
Again the requirements vary but at a minimum you will most likely be required to include a copy of your passport or driver’s licence. Many agencies have implemented a 100 point check which typically allocates points as follows. The points vary as they are determined by each agency.
- Passport – from 30 to 60 points
- Driver’s licence – from 30 to 50 points
- Photo identification, copy of birth certificate, police check – normally 40 points each
- Current registration papers, rent receipts, phone and electricity account statements, credit cards, Medicare card – normally 10 points each
Proof of Income or Assets
You will need to provide proof of income. This usually requires providing your salary and employer details, including phone number. The agency may call them to verify details. You may be asked to supply several recent pay slips.
If you do not have a regular income (eg. you are retired), then provide evidence of your ability to pay the rent from cash assets.
Remember to include all of your income if you have other sources aside from your main salary. Attach extra pages to the application form if necessary.
How long will it take to assess the application?
Firstly, it is important to send your application to the agent as soon as possible after the inspection. There is likely to be other interest and you don’t want to miss out on a place just because your application was too late.
Once you give you form to the property manager it will be assessed. Many will endeavor to get back to you within a couple of days. If the property has attracted strong interest it is extra important to ensure you have provided all the information that has been requested as otherwise your application may be automatically excluded from consideration.
Note: a version of this post was first published in 2012 and has been brought forward from our archives for our newer readers who may not otherwise go searching for it.