What do I need to qualify for a Gainesville apartment?

Photo of L3 Campus GainesvilleL3 Campus is less than half a mile to UF, so it's a great option for students looking to live close to school.

Qualifying for a Gainesville apartment is the first step to living on your own. If this is your first time trying to qualify for an apartment or if you simply want to be prepared, here are the five main things you need to set yourself up for success:

  1. Qualification Requirements: You must be 18 years or older to qualify for apartments in Gainesville. It is standard practice that you cannot legally enter a contract unless you are an adult or an emancipated minor.
  2. Security Deposit: When applying for Gainesville apartments, you'll likely need to submit a security deposit along with the lease. The amount required for a security deposit can vary, but it is typically equivalent to one month's rent. Some apartment communities may require additional depositary funds, so it's important to ask each community before signing a lease. You will also encounter additional deposits if you have pets, some of which can be refundable.
  3. Proof of Income: Along with a security deposit, you will also need to supply the apartment community with proof of income. Most apartments will require that you have an income of around three times the total rent, though this can also vary. This will prove to your landlord that you can afford your rent. Proof of income can be verified in a number of ways, including pay stubs, bank statements, or tax returns. If you are trying to keep costs low, Gainesville has a wide variety of luxurious, yet affordable apartments. Save even more by renting an apartment with utilities included!
  4. Get a Guarantor: Depending on your specific circumstances, you may be asked to have a guarantor or co-signer on your lease. This may come in handy if you're a first-time renter with no rental history, if you don't have three times the income, or if you don't have their ideal credit score. Having a co-signer protects the apartment community in the unlikely event that you default on your monthly rental payments, as the co-signer will be held financially responsible. This is quite common for apartments near UF that cater to young college students with no rental history. Learn more about what your landlord make look for with this rental advice from NerdWallet.
  5. Rental Score: Lastly, some communities require a rental score. You get a rental score by submitting an application to a third-party rental application screening company. Your rental score results from information found in your credit report, criminal history, references, and application data. Such information may include your history of paying bills and rent, the accounts you have, collections and delinquencies, income and debt.

This may seem like a lot of hoops to jump through in order to get into a Gainesville apartment, but it will be well worth the effort. Planning ahead is the best way to prevent hiccups down the line and ensure you find an awesome place to call home!

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