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June 14, 2021 Posted in City Guides
Julie Grace

Originally from The Golden City, Julie has explored the ins and outs of moving and has written all the tips down.

Everything You Should Know About San Francisco Rental Application Form

Looking for a fresh start and changing the place you live might be very exciting. Once you get in this process, you might start wondering what makes a strong San Francisco rental application? You need to do proper research before jumping to conclusions. You have to think through different aspects while keeping your mind on things landlords might look in a tenant. This informative article will help you understand this procedure and deal with it in the best way possible.

model of a house Learn everything you need to know about the rental application in San Francisco

Even if you go through this process easily, there are some other important things you need to consider. Finding good real estate agents and trustworthy cross-country moving company in Orange County, CA, should be high on your priority list. These professionals can help you go through your relocation process comfortably and efficiently.

You’ll Find All the Necessary Information About San Francisco Rental Application in This Article

We understand that relocations can get very challenging and you might even feel overwhelmed with moving stress from time to time. In order to prevent any unnecessary stressful situations, start organizing your move on time and make a substantial moving to-do list. Start with having a nice little going away party to relax and get back to work.

If you want to file an SF rent application, you’ll find many useful tips and information in the following text. From documents you need to gather, financial responsibilities and current status, rental history, to potential problems – you’ll find everything you need to know about this process soon. But firstly, you’ll need to pay a non-refundable fee of $40.00 that will be collected by Able Screening.

Guidelines For Completing an Application

If you decided to apply submission for a certain apartment, you need to take all of the following steps:

  • Every applicant is obligated to see the desired unit in person before applying for submission,
  • If you’re an adult living with other adults, every person needs to make a separate application,
  • Every application needs to have all the required data and a personal signature,
  • You need to upload a clear copy of your government-issued ID,
  • You must include recent pay stubs and the previous two years’ tax returns if you’re self-employed.

You can submit this form online or in person. Going through the process online is definitely the fastest way – you can download the form and fill it with the required details. Keep in mind that additional requirements and submissions might be requested depending on the landlords’ personal differences.

Personal Data Is Always Required

There is no legal way to find yourself a good apartment without providing detailed information about your family and yourself if you’re going looking to move somewhere together. The information you are legally obligated to provide usually include:

  • First, middle, and last name,
  • Social security number,
  • Contact phone number,
  • Email address,
  • State identification number or driver’s license, including state-issued and the expiration date.

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You’ll Need Financial Plan and Income Resources

Keep in mind that landlords might be strongly motivated to find out more about your financial resources, so they could know if you are going to pay your utilities and rental fees on time. Don’t get surprised if they don’t trust your words because they might have had some unpleasant experience in the past with all the potential moving scams. It isn’t unusual that they require some proof of income, for example, pay stubs.

You can easily get this from your HR department and include it in your application. They might also look for your credit score and history using your social security number. Don’t forget to organize these important documents before the relocation – it’s not uncommon that they are among items movers won’t move because professionals don’t want that kind of responsibility. Legal documents are also among the most commonly forgotten things to pack because they are often kept in a hidden place, so make sure you don’t leave them there.

person calculating You need to prepare documents showing financial incomes

Proprietors Follow Strict Laws and Procedures

As this area is known for some of the highest rent prices in the country, it’s not unusual that landlords want to find reliable tenants. Tenant screening laws exist to ensure that no one gets tricked during this process. Apart from state and federal laws, this city had additional regulations and laws in order to ensure fairness between proprietors and applicants. For example, application fees are limited, and this limit is adjusted yearly, while the payment is non-refundable. Another important thing to consider is that without the verified signature, proprietors can not proceed with the screening procedure and do a background check of the tenant applying for the rent.

Tenants Screening Criteria in San Francisco

Every homeowner should also form some kind of criteria for potential tenants and compare them mutually according to their differences. These criteria usually include prior evictions, criminal history, bankruptcies, income-to-rent ratio, current job status, smoking, and pets. If you provide them with all the necessary data and satisfy their criteria, there shouldn’t be any problems to move efficiently. Before the official checkup, the applicant needs to agree in writing that the provided data is truthful and the landlord has their permission to verify it. This also requires precise dates when the application is filed.

person going through the documents Gather all the necessary documents

Your Apartment Rental History Might Be Important – Contact Landlords to Gather Information

If you rented a place before, you’d need to specify the list of your former addresses and your previous proprietors’ contact details. This can also apply to your previous rents for some period in the past, for example, the last ten years. These kinds of details are essential for homeowners because they need to check your previous activities together with potential misuses.

Tenant Information and Resources Landlords Don’t Need to Know About

Unfortunately, there is always a chance that homeowners want to know more about their potential tenants than they are legally permitted to know. Apart from personal data needed to verify your identity, these are some details homeowner shouldn’t ask or use to discriminate against you during the screening process:

  • Immigration status and citizenship,
  • Recorded arrest (unless they were made for violent crimes),
  • Color, race, sex, age, gender identity, sexual orientation, marital status, religion, national origin, source of income, medical condition or disability,
  • Details about underage individuals in your household.

Homeowners are obligated to adhere to California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) and the Federal Fair Housing Act when referring to discrimination.

Health insurance certificate on the table Your landlord shouldn't ask you about your medical condition

Landlord Will Check if You Have a Roommate

There are always general limits for occupancy in a unit depending on the unit type and size, so every individual roommate has to complete their screenings unless they are underaged. This is crucial because tenants, according to their number, might have individual bills. Believe us, with all the strict laws and regulations, there is no way to hide a roommate. You might even get yourself in potentially problematic situations, so ensure that you stay sincere when it comes to people you’re going to live with. Most of the buildings have their receptionist that will check who comes inside and what apartment they are visiting. If they notice any suspicious behavior, they won’t hesitate to notify your landlord about it. The owner of the apartment can also conduct an inspection of the place whenever they like.

Avoid Having Pets if Your Landlord Doesn’t Know About Them

Did you know that about 76% of Millennials own a cat or a dog? Moving with pets is much more common than you think, so every experienced landlord is aware of the possibility that you are one of them as well. Hiding your pet is not a very good idea, so make sure you notify an apartment owner that you have a pet and check if that fits their criteria.

They Can Offer You Additional Charges for Pets

Once they are aware that your furry friend is moving to San Francisco with you, they might ask you to pay some additional fees. Potential payments that you can add to your moving expenses checklist include pet rent and a deposit. They might also want to know you about your pet’s breed, size, and number or ask you to sign a pet policy.

Jack Russell Terrier carrying a bowl in its mouth You might need to pay a deposit or pet rent if you're relocating with pets

House Hunting Tips Every Tenant Should Know About

Once you start looking for your dream home in some of the best places to live in California, there are some important things you should consider before making any final decision. You need to be aware of your priorities and the things you look for in a home and neighborhood. You also need to decide if your current financial situation allows you to live on your own or you need to look for a roommate. If you currently don’t have a job, is the place you’re relocating to offering some good possibilities for getting one?

Do your research in advance – the best days to look for a home are Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays. If you want to hire a certified real estate agent to help you during this process, our advice is to set up meetings on Fridays and Thursdays because weekends are usually reserved for “Open House” frenzies. A professional real estate agent that knows the market well can be your best friend during the selection process and show you helpful relocation hacks. You should also consider hiring professional cross-country movers in Orange County in advance. Check out this convenient video about house hunting tips.

Search For a Trustworthy Cross Country Moving Company Once You Find Your Dream Home

Once your application is accepted and you’re finally relocating to one of the safest cities in Orange County, you need to start planning your move. Hire long-distance movers that can offer you excellent cross-country moving services at affordable prices and turn your relocation into a pleasant experience. The experienced cross-country movers in Orange County can even provide you with a free quote, so you’ll know the estimated price of your move in advance. They can also provide you with packing services as well as car shipping if you need it. Don’t wait up, pack up your bags, and head to one of the best metropolises the US has.


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