Five tips to stand out with your next rental application

Finding your perfect home is an exciting time and renting a property provides flexibility, independence and an introduction to a new or exciting suburb or city. With nationally tight vacancy rates and rising rents, securing your perfect property has never been more challenging. Being knocked back can be disheartening, so knowing how to stand out in a competitive market is crucial to landing your dream home.

 “It's like being in a job interview,” Our CEO, Andrew Graham says, “the little things aren't going to guarantee you a property, but they will help you stand out from the rest. Property managers are swamped with applications so it’s important to find that extra edge.”

Here are our five top tips for being a standout applicant to put yourself right at the top of the application pile.

Be prepared

Being physically and mentally prepared for a house open is the first step to getting your toe on the housing ladder. First impressions count, so arrive for meetings and viewings looking well-presented, just as you might for a job interview. Dressing and grooming thoughtfully not only enhances self-confidence but can significantly influence the perceptions of others. Our clothes help place us where we want to be and demonstrate we are taking this appointment seriously. Good mental presentation is also imperative. Keeping calm and collected allows easy and open interaction, without the butterflies. Deep breaths and simply being yourself is key to feeling cool and confident.

Dot the i's and cross the t's

Incomplete documents are a common reason for unsuccessful applications. In a competitive market, property agents don’t have time to chase up applicants for forgotten details, so ensuring all paperwork is properly completed is your first step in acquiring your dream home. Being prepared ahead of time and able to present your application quickly can put you ahead of the race. Before your meeting, gather as many documents and details as possible including rental references, bank details, personal identification, payslips and financial history. When completing the application read the instructions carefully, for example is only a black pen permitted or must all answers be written in capital letters. Be meticulous and precise when filling out your details and go beyond expectations, attaching a cover letter detailing your application and why you should be considered for this property. Ensure all documents are collated in order, labelled and collated in a clear folder. Not only will you feel confident with your submission, but it will show the agent how considered and organised you are.

Notify referees

Contacting your referees ahead of time is not only good manners but allows them to prepare themselves for a call from the agent. Referees are asked a series of questions that can range from personal to financial, so if they are flustered or unprepared, they may not be ready to give the best or most deserved responses. Making a quick phone call and briefing them on what the agent may require allows them to best represent you, ensuring you are one step closer to moving into your perfect rental.

Put yourself in the shoes of the owner

Top of any landlord’s wish list is a reliable and trustworthy tenant. “Yes, we want the best price but equally important is finding the best long-term candidate possible,” Andrew said. “A truly desirable tenant is the one that always pays their rent on time and looks after the property as if it’s their own.” Be honest about your salary, whether you have pets, or an extra housemate moving in. If you have a previous reference that is less than glowing, be frank and upfront about it. A good landlord knows to look for the right qualities in a tenant, so allow them to get to know you. Let them know how much you love gardening or will appreciate living close to the city or water. As many positive details you can provide them will highlight why you are the most desirable applicant.

Follow-up call

Following up on your inspection can potentially give you an edge. Allow a couple of days to pass and call your agent to remind them how much you loved the property and if there is any other information required.  If by chance your dream rental slips through your fingers, ask for feedback so you know how you can improve your chances next time.

Ready to find your dream rental? Browse our residential listings here.