Being Accepted as a Tenant, from Life in the USA: The Complete Guide for Immigrants and Americans

Life in the USA is a complete guide to American life for immigrants and Americans. All materials on this site Copyright © Elliot Essman 2014. All rights reserved.    Home    Back    next

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Life in the USA
American Community

Being Accepted as a Tenant
Once you find an apartment to rent, you'll have to convince the landlord to rent it to you. Most landlords will require you to fill out an application and show some credit and employment history. If you aren't yet settled in the country you might have trouble with some landlords, yet others will rent to you anyway because they like you or because they are used to renting to foreigners. Landlords protect themselves by taking security deposits from tenants. You'll have to deposit the equivalent of one or two months' rent (in addition to the monthly rent you'll have to pay) which the landlord will be entitled to keep if you don't pay rent or damage the apartment. When you do give the landlord a security deposit, make sure to check the local law. The landlord is probably required to keep the money in a bank account earning interest for you, paying you the interest every year or so.

If you look hard enough you might be able to find a landlord from your own country. Just be careful that you do not pay too much extra or put up with unsatisfactory conditions just for the comfort of dealing with someone who speaks your own language. The same applies to employment, professional services and many other aspects of life. It is common for foreigners to be exploited by people from their own countries.

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