In a city with more than 8 million people, you can bet not everybody has a stellar credit report. If you fall into this category, don’t worry. Renting with bad credit or no credit is possible in NYC, especially if you follow these tips. Then you can work on improving that score for your next pad.

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    Do All Apartments Check Credit Scores?

    The short answer is yes. Most landlords want to check your credit — but finding an apartment to rent with bad credit is possible. In fact, finding an apartment to rent with no credit is possible, too.

    To land an apartment rental with iffy or no credit, you’ve got a few options. “Probably the most accessible option is to try for a sublet,”  says Corcoran broker Nikki R. Thomas. Sublets have long been one of the best ways to land one of NYC’s no-credit-check apartments. “The landlord is a bit more flexible when it comes to a sublet because they know the tenant is still on the hook,” Thomas says.

    Can I Get an Apartment With a 500 Credit Score?

    If you are in a renting predicament, you might ask yourself, Do landlords ever accept a low credit score? Like around 500, or even below? “It’s really case-by-case,” says R New York broker Evan Rugen. Ideally, you will have a credit score of at least 650. Is yours lower than that? Don’t worry too much. There are ways to boost your credit score fast, like asking for an increased limit.

    Finding no-credit-check apartments or places that will accept a renter with bad credit is doable. But it can be harder than it was a few years ago. “Once upon a time, you did have the option of prepaying,” Thomas says. “But a rent law passed in 2019 made that no longer an option.” Tenants with bad credit used to be able to pony up a bit more cash upfront, like a larger security deposit. Now the legal maximum is one month’s rent. The new law was partly designed to protect tenants from sky-high move-in fees.

    Get an Apartment Cosigner

    Your landlord will still want to know how he or she will get paid if you can’t make your rent. As a solution, they usually ask renters who don’t have a credit history to get a guarantor when signing a lease. What is a guarantor? Someone who is legally required to pay your rent if you don’t pay.

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    How Do I Avoid a Credit Check When Renting?

    First and foremost, be honest. If your credit score is low, being upfront about it can put you in a good light. Landlords and real estate agents appreciate honesty when helping you find no-credit-check apartments in NYC. Nobody wants their precious time wasted!

    In addition, you could consider a rental cosigning company. These third-party guarantors, like Rhino and Insurent, are basically like “hiring” a guarantor. Of course, they’re not free, but it’s less stressful than having to depend on a loved one. And it prevents awkward conversations about money with your fam at the dinner table.

    To work with these companies, you will need proof of employment to show you have a steady income. They will often require that your income be 27.5 times the monthly rent. Landlords typically require that you earn 40 times the monthly rent. So, if you wanted to rent a $2,000 apartment, you would have to make $55,000 with a rental cosigning company, as opposed to $80,000 without one. Hey, nobody said New York City was cheap. But it is fabulous!

    Whether you’re looking to rent or to buyfind your next NYC apartment on StreetEasy.