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Tenant Application Requirements to Get Approved by Landlords and Hoa's

By Alberto S. June 13, 2021

Tenant Application Requirements to Get Approved by Landlords and Hoa's image

At PropertiesMiami, we receive a lot of rental requests, and every rental is different. We try our best to help every potential renter, and that's why we created this guide to help tenants understand what's needed to get their application approved by a landlord or a condo association in Miami.

When you apply to rent a condo: you'll need to get approved first by the landlord and then by the building's association (also known as homeowners association and condo association). Both approvals are required to lease a condo in Miami.

When you apply to rent a house: the only approval you need is from the homeowner. Renting a house is more flexible, faster, and easier than renting a condo because a condo association has requirements and rules to follow.

Here are the tenant application requirements that landlords and condo associations have for new tenants, and the solutions if you don't meet the criteria.

Landlord Requirements

Landlord requirements for potential tenants.
Landlord requirements for potential tenants.

Here are the three main key points that almost every landlord requires from potential tenants. Unlike condo associations, landlords are flexible. They might accept you as a tenant if you have at least two out of these 3-points, right. Example: If you have a bad credit score, they might accept you if you show a high monthly income and impressive bank statements. 

PropertiesMiami can help every person looking for a rental property with at least two out of these three points. If you're ready, go to our Miami rental properties page to find your new home.

If you have only one out of these three points, it's very difficult and risky for a homeowner/landlord to accept you as a tenant.

1. 650+ Credit Score.

It's essential that your credit score is at least 650. A lower credit score is a red flag for landlords, and they usually won't like to hear excuses and reasons why a tenant's credit score is low. So, having a credit score above 650 (ideally over 700) will help you get approved. Foreigners are an exception because they don't have a credit score and they're applying with a non-U.S. passport. But foreigners will need to provide impressive financials to ensure the landlord that monthly rental payments won't be a problem.

Solution if your credit score isn't above 650 - 700:

It might help to offer a higher amount of upfront money towards the move-in costs: first month, second month, last month, and security deposit. In a normal lease, the initial move-in costs are the first month, last month, and a security deposit. You'll need to be creative and be willing to spend more to convince the landlord to take the risk.

2. Bank Statements.

Every landlord wants to know if the potential tenant can afford to keep paying rent even if the applicant loses his current job. A decent bank statement for a landlord will show at least six times the monthly rental payment. For example, if your monthly lease payment is expected to be $1,500, the landlord will like to see a bank statement that shows $9,000 or more.

Solution if your bank statement doesn't show at least four times the rental payment:

Most likely, the landlord won't accept your application because of the fear that he'll encounter problems collecting rent. The ideal is to show at least six times the monthly rental payment in your bank statements; presenting your stock portfolio, if any, will also work.

3. Proof of Income.

When you apply for a rental property, you'll need to show your proof of income. Landlords like to see that the applicant has a steady monthly income that's at least three times the monthly rental payment.

Solution if you don't have a monthly income at least three times the rental payment:

You'll need to show impressive bank statements with at least six times the monthly rental payment in your current available balance; that way, you're proving to the landlord that he has nothing to worry about, and you're able to sustain the monthly rental payments.

*Every landlord is different, and they might accept tenants with lower requirements, but this rarely occurs.

Condo Association Requirements

Condo association requirements in Miami.
These are the common condo association requirements for new tenants.

To get to live in an apartment in Miami, you'll need to get approved by the building's condo association. Every condo association has requirements, and these have to be met by every applicant. Condo associations are not flexible.

1. Clean Background Check.

Almost 97% of condo associations in Miami perform a background check on every applicant. If they discover a criminal record on the applicant, they'll discard the application, and you'll not be able to rent any unit in the building.

Solution if you have a criminal record: 

  • 1. Try to find a realtor specialized in buildings that don't require a background check. Remember, almost 97% of condo associations in Miami will perform a background check.
  • 2. Try to rent a single-family house. At least 50% of homeowners don't perform a background check on their tenants' applications. Also, homeowners are flexible, and they'll listen to your explanations and reasons behind the criminal record.

2. Credit Score.

Every condo association in Miami has a minimum credit score in their requirements that has to be met by all new applicants. Usually, the required credit score is above 650. Condo associations aren't flexible, and they follow their rules and regulations. The only exception is for non-U.S. residents, they're able to apply using their foreigner passport, and they'll need extra supporting documents that show their financials.

Solution if you have a low credit score:

  • 1. Find a realtor that specializes in buildings that don't require a minimum credit score. There are very few buildings in Miami that don't require a credit score, but there are.
  • 2. Search for a single-family house where there is no condo association involved. The landlord will ask you for your credit score, but you'll be able to explain the reasons behind it and compensate it with great bank statements and proof of income.

What if You Don't Meet the Basic Requirements?

What to do if you don't meet the requirements.
Steps to follow if you don't meet the basic requirements.

Don't get discouraged if you don't meet the minimum requirements to apply for a rental property, there will always be some exceptions, but this is some work you'll need to do.

  • 1. Get in contact with multiple homeowners and ask them directly, explain your situation, and why they should consider you. They might understand. With condo associations, if you don't meet their minimum requirements, they won't be flexible.
  • 2. Contact a real estate agent specialized in low income, low credit score, and section-8 rentals. When you find this realtor, be direct, and tell them your situation, and ask them if they'll be able to help you. *This type of agent usually asks for a service fee because they know the amount of work required.