Alright, it's time to fill out the application for a house you really want. You're probably not too excited about writing all your personal information down for a total stranger to check out, but remember: you're asking this person to live in their house, so it makes sense that you'd have to divulge some personal info. There's really not much that needs explaining on your application, either you know your personal info or you don't.
Don't forget that you will also need to pay your application fee in order for your application to be processed by the rental company. If you're dealing with a landlord who only has one or two rental properties, this may not occur, but almost all property management companies will charge you. The cost is generally between $20-$30 per person, and if you're applying to more than one home – which you probably should be – these costs can add up.
For your rental history, make sure to put your most recent landlord (with their contact information if requested). If you only have one, put the dorms as your second previous address. If you're still living in the dorms, put that as your main address and write “N/A" for the landlord section.
This is an example rental application from a Property Management company here in town. We don't endorse this company by any means, but they have a simple and clean application.
After a few times applying, it's going to become very annoying to fill out a separate application, collect it from your roommates, and then turn it in and pay another fee every time you apply.
You can pretty much guarantee you're going to have to call your parents to get your (and/or their) social security number or bank account information again on your next application. Since you're waiting for your whole group every time, you're going to stress because you're prioritizing an application over your academic and social life, and you seem to keep losing $30 every time you apply for a home. It's like a race that you must pay to enter, but have no clue who you're competing with, and you must keep entering until you do win. Talk about frustrating.
We recommend two options:
Be Prepared: Get all this information up front and have it ready to go before you start applying.
Don't Leave Anything Blank: Fill out the entire application. If you don't have something, like a car, write "N/A" instead of leaving it blank.
No Job? If you don't currently have a job, write "Full-time student" or put your previous employer.
Personal References Shouldn't Be Relatives: Most landlords are only going to call your parents and any previous landlords.