How to get approved for a rental property by exploiting your renting experience

For renters

With a quick google, you'll notice most articles on the web focus on helping you get approved for a rental property if you have no renting experience.

Not this one. I will show you how to outshine your competition by taking advantage of your renting experience through a real estate agent.

In short, when applying for a property, you need to get the agent's attention without coming across as desperate or taking up their time with pointless conversation. This will get your foot in the door, your application on the top of the pile.

Secondly, you need to make it easy for them to say yes to your application. The quicker it takes the agent to screen your application, the more chance you'll get approved.

This means you need to prove you can:

  1. Pay the rent on time
  2. Look after the property

All without them requesting more information from you (that just sucks up way too much of their time)

Also, notice the word 'prove'. Unfortunately, too many people try to cheat the system, so your word (at this point) means little.

I have personally screened thousands of applications over the past 10 years or so.

It's a time-consuming process because every renter has a slightly different situation; every home, every landlord and everyone's preferences are different. Everything needs to match up.

But like most things, there is an 80/20 rule.

If you can verify your household income is 3 times the rent and you have one or two good references from a real estate agent, this is almost everything to get your application approved.

I'm going to give you three pretty simple tasks that will hit both those points, most importantly exploiting your renting experience to help your application get attention and get approved.

Quick side note: To find out what I recommend based on your entire situation, click here. You'll be redirected to complete a 1-2 min survey. Then, you will receive an instant email with your recommendations.

The big challenge

You need to shine brighter than every other application.

This can be difficult because it's likely you will be compared with similar quality applicants to yourself. This is because a home typically draws a similar calibre of people.


You need to do something your competition is not.

Something the agent will appreciate and respect you for.

This means you need to do more than:

  • Write a good cover letter
  • Complete all the application questions
  • Upload all requested documents
  • Submit the application quickly after the inspection

And just hope you'll get noticed.

You need to do something extra.


Provide a rent ledger with your application.

This report shows all your rent payments.

They are highly effective because:

  • Only about 5% of people attach a rent ledger to their application. (stand out)
  • They show that you will pay rent on time. (half the battle)
  • They show that you are proactive and thoughtful (characteristics they're looking for)
  • Saves their time (makes it easy for them to say yes)
  • They're difficult to reproduce. (cheat the system)

Being hard to reproduce is essential. Have you ever attached a written reference with your application, only to find out the agent contacted the reference anyway, almost as if they wanted to verify it themselves?

Yep sounds silly, but the agent needs to be 100% confident the information is true and accurate to be considered in their decision-making process.

You can request a rent ledger from the agent you currently or previously rent through and attach that to your application when you apply for a property.

The only downside to a rent ledger is they don't come with a big 'on-time rent payer' badge or status; the agent going through your application needs to check each payment individually (which they may not have the time for).

A better option is to get your on-time rent payer badge here. It will help you stand out quickly to get attention, so the agent reads your application.

I'll tell you how to exploit this even further at the end to assure your application gets the attention it needs to get shortlisted.


Request a reference from your agent.

Any half reputable property manager screening an application will certainly request a reference from your current and/or previous agent during the screening process. You passed step one of their screening process on the provisor, which is getting your application shortlisted.

As mentioned above, the agent screening your application may still like to get their own reference; however, following the steps here will give your reference more authority as requested and provided through a third party.

At a minimum, this will also tell the agent that you're looking to move. This is good because, at a minimum, they'll be ready to provide a reference. The agent screening your application will also see that you have been transparent with your current agent about moving, another characteristic of a good tenant.


Get a rent Rent Affordability check.

I mentioned towards the beginning, you need to prove that you earn 3 times the rent. This does it one hit. Verified data the agent can rely on, and it only takes 2 minutes.

Now that that's all done.

Here is one last step you should do to leverage all your hard work.

After you have completed an application and submitted it to the agent/homeowner.

Send another email directly to the agent or homeowner.

Yes, a separate one; this does not replace the cover letter in the application.

This email is important because it will help ensure the agent looks at your application with excitement they might have a good tenant ready to go.

This email is important because it will:

  • Reiterate you love the property (critical)
  • Give them a reason to check out your application
  • Give them light and reasonable time restraint (FOMO)

Without being forceful, salesy or desperate.

I have written this email so you don't have to write it yourself but I have to email it to you so it doesn't look like you just copied it from google.

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That's it.

Good luck.

Oh, just in case you haven't done the survey to get your personal recommendations based on your own situation, click here.‍ You'll be redirected to complete a 1-2 min survey. Then, you will receive an instant email with your recommendations.