You’ve heard about how not paying bills on time can ruin your credit history. A damaged credit history can hurt you when you want to borrow money for a house or car, or even if you apply for a job.
Rental history is just as important as credit history, and there are ways you can ruin your history, making it difficult to find a landlord willing to rent to you in the future.
Here are the top three ways to ruin your rental history report.
- Breaking the rental lease – Jobs, family and even your health may require you to move out of your current apartment and break a lease. But this could hurt your history in the long run. The best advice is to communicate openly with your landlord about your situation, and work with your landlord to help get the apartment rented again. You may have to forfeit your security deposit, and make an offer to have your apartment cleaned for showings, giving the landlord a chance to rent it right away.
- Delinquency on your payments – Not paying your rent on time can put a bad mark in both your rental history reports and your credit history reports. Before renting an apartment, make certain you can afford the rent, utility bills and other living costs. And if you have difficulty remembering to pay rent, ask your landlord if you can have it automatically withdrawn from a bank account, or ask your landlord to send you a bill each month.
- Damaging and destroying property is one thing, failing to alert the landlord to the damage and arranging to pay for it is another. Even if you leave the apartment damaged, a landlord may refrain from reporting it on your rental history report if you agree to either fix the damage yourself or pay to have someone else do the job.
Consider checking your rental history report prior to looking for a new apartment. Make sure you have a good chance at renting a new apartment before leaving the old one.