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How to rent a flat without a job reference

Updated February 21, 2017

Renting a flat without a job reference is a challenge but not impossible. Many people relocate for various reasons, one of them being to get a better job. Letting agents and property managers require proof of income, rental history and a background check. In some larger cities, they also require a credit check. The purpose of these requirements is to prove that the tenant can afford to keep up the monthly rent payments and that he or she will be a reliable tenant. But there are ways around these traditional requirement checks. Some landlords also accept tenants who aren't currently working but are in receipt of Housing Benefit.

Take a copy of your bank statements and, if you have a current or recent job, also take old pay slips with you when applying for the flat. If you can prove that you earn double the amount of the rent and have had your job for at least a year, the letting agent may decide to rent to you without a specific employment reference.

Offer to pay in advance. Three months rent paid in advance along with the deposit may convince the agent to rent to you, even if you do not have a current job. Advance payments reassure the agent that the rent will be paid.

Get a co-signatory. University students often have no steady job or income so asking a parent or a close friend to co-sign for you may be the answer.

Rent a short-term let. Some agents offer weekly bedsits and small flats with no credit check and no deposit. Check for locations and other B&B alternatives to provide short-term housing while looking for a job. Once you have a job, start applying for flats.

Look in the newspaper for privately owned flats. Smaller blocks that are not owned by management companies often do not carry out credit checks or background investigations. You may not even need to sign a lease. A month-to-month tenancy will leave open the opportunity open to move into another flat without having to break a lease.

Tip

If possible, transfer your current position to the new location. Check with your company to see if they have openings where you want to move. Transferring is easier than starting from fresh. You can always apply for a new job once you have the apartment.

Always tell the landlord or letting agent if you plan to claim Housing Benefit in order to meet the rental payment. The landlord will need to complete the Certificate of Occupation section of your Housing Benefit claim form to ensure the claim can be processed.

Things You'll Need

  • Bank statement
  • Cheque stubs
  • Proof of income
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About the Author

Lisa Musser is a freelance writer specializing in health and beauty information. She attended Pima Community College in Tucson, Ariz. and began a career as a freelance writer in 2008 after spending five years in the health-care field as a certified nursing assistant.