Successfully Renting An Apartment Without Established Credit

If you have been unsuccessfully searching for an apartment to rent, due to your lack of a credit score, then there are some simple things that you can do to be more successful in your search.

Renting an Apartment and Your Credit Score

As you have already discovered, many property managers use your credit score in order to judge your financial stability as a renter. This is all well and good if you have already had the time to establish credit. But, when you are young, and have not yet used any credit, you can find it nearly impossible to locate an apartment complex willing to rent to you.

Small Apartment Complex vs. Large Apartment Complex

Large apartment complexes are often owned by corporations. Due to this, they tend to have a property manager who is in charge of renting out their units. This rental agent is given strict guidelines by which they are to screen potential renters.

Typically, these guidelines include your:

  • credit score
  • credit report
  • employment history
  • income
  • family size

Where large apartment complex rental agents are not allowed flexibility in their approval process for renters, many smaller apartment complexes are owned by individuals who do offer this flexibility.

Individual landlords are more willing, and able, to be able to judge your situation as a whole, versus simply entering your numbers into a computer and denying your application.

If you have been denied a rental by a larger complex, then you should approach smaller complex owners and speak to them about your unique situation.

House Rental

In many areas of the country, you can rent a small, modest house for about the same as you will pay each month to rent an apartment. Just as with smaller apartment complexes, most rental homes are owned by individuals who will be more likely to work with your situation.

If you are not having any luck finding an apartment, then you should consider renting a small house.

Shared Rental

The last option you have for renting without established credit, if you have not been successful in finding your own rental home or small apartment complex unit, is to share a rental with someone else. This will allow you to find one of these two situations:

  1. two signatures on the lease, which means your credit score won't matter as much
  2. a room where the other renter isn't interested in checking your credit

Not everyone wants to share their space, but if you are willing to share a rental, then you will find it much easier to rent without credit with another signature on the lease.


By approaching individuals who are offering apartments for rent in your area, you can overcome your problem of not being able to find a rental due to your lack of established credit. If all else fails, you always have the option to rent with another person for a while, until you can establish your credit.