How To Get Approved For A Rental Property

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Posted by Natalie on March 19, 2020

Top 5 Tips For Getting Approved For A Rental Property.

In a competitive Adelaide rental market, as we’re experiencing now, many prospective tenants can become despondent after applying unsuccessfully multiple times through property management companies.
Typically there are reasons why people applying to rent a property are unsuccessful, but all hope is not lost.
There are steps to avoid further disappointment and increase the chance of success by making their application stand out from others.

Have you found the ideal Adelaide rental property available? Put your best foot forward with these 5 tips for submitting a tenancy application to property managers and landlord’s.

  1. Understand what’s important to a landlord & therefore property managers

    From a landlord’s point of view, renting a property is a financial investment, there is, or should be no emotion involved. With most landlords taking out a mortgage to purchase the property, to make the investment successful, 2 aspects are very important.

    1. The rental payments are regularly made on time, which means ideally having a long term tenant paying on time, all the time and
    2. The property is looked after, kept clean and not damaged.


    When tenants complete an application to rent a property they therefore must be able to show they can afford to make the rental payments, and if they have rented a property before, show they had a good payment history and collected their full bond at the end of that tenancy period.

    Property managers from Salvan Property Management will check the ‘rent ledger’ you send through, to see whether the rent was indeed paid on time and whether the bond was paid back. Bank statements can also verify rent payments.
    Salvan will also verify your income, to make sure you are still able to make the same or similar rent payments with the same or similar income.

    Adelaide residents looking to rent for the first time, need to show they can afford to make the rent payments. This can be proved with savings shown via the last 6 months bank statements.

    In addition to the first 2 weeks rent payments, the bond also needs to be paid. It’s a red flag to a property manager if you don’t have this amount already in your bank account and can’t pay for a couple of weeks. It means in reality you’re living week to week, which will make a property manager or landlord very nervous.

    The tip here is to make sure you always pay your rent on-time, look after rental properties; fixing any damage and make sure you can afford to make the upfront rent and bond payment.
    (You are obliged to inform your property manager of any repair work that’s required and must be approved by your property manager before commencement)

  2. Know what’s on your credit file

    If you have been late with payments on a loan or for any utility account in the past, there is a chance that will appear on your credit file.
    Your credit file will be checked by property managers, who will not appreciate finding something you did not disclose upfront. ‘Oh I forgot about that’ will not be a good response and will make it look like your hiding past problems. Often late payments are due to circumstances outside of our control. If you know and you do know payments were late, explain why. Telling the truth at the beginning is always far better than trying to hide something that will be found out.

    A property manager will be comforted with the knowledge that rental payments were made on time even though your Netflix account went in arrears!

  3. Complete the application in full

    It’s frustrating for a property manager or landlord, not to mention time consuming, to have to chase information you should have supplied with the application. Imagine you’re looking at 10 tenancy applications and 2 are incomplete, either questions were not answered or supporting documentation that needed to be sent through wasn’t. Would you chase up those 2 incomplete applications, or put them on the bottom of the pile and look at the remaining 8?

  4. Be prepared & professional

    Generally speaking, property managers from Salvan Property Management will insist you have looked over the property you’d like to rent and are happy with everything. This also means you will be meeting your new property manager.
    Being on-time, polite and professional will definitely go a long way. If you come to an open inspection with copies of all the required supporting documentation and have, or can complete the online application; which takes about 2 minutes, you will be thought of as keen, prepared and very organised.

    If you have a pet, especially a dog and the rental property has been advertised as pet friendly, read the article we have on our website titled ‘Find & Secure Pet Friendly Rentals‘ to help your application stand out from others.
    Salvan Property Management does promote pet friendly rentals and recommends that more landlords strongly consider allowing pets.

  5. Always be honest

    With over 25 years property management experience, Salvan property managers have seen all the tricks, misdirection and lies many times before.
    Don’t try to hide the fact you will be having a pet dog when the landlord has not approved the property as being pet friendly.
    Do not say only one or two people will be living at the property when there will be others.
    There is no point using the property as an Air B&B. You will be found out, sooner than you think. This can also mean additional fees and eviction, with a black mark against you on TICA (Australia’s largest tenancy database).

    References given by friends and family don’t carry any weight if you’re pretending they’re previous private landlords. Forging information, including bank statements and pay-slips will not get you approved.

In summary, if you follow these 5 steps, you’ll increase the chance of having your tenancy application approved over others.

Some myths people think adversely affect them

Some people think that there are factors about their application that will go against them over others. The following lists examples that are simply not true!

  • I earn less, or am on a pension, so someone who earns more will be approved over me.
    Not true. Property managers want to know the applicant can afford to make the rent payments on time. How much more over that is really not important. Many pension Centrelink payments are guaranteed, so are considered very favourably.
  • I won’t be approved because I have a default on my credit file due to a divorce and some accounts being in my name only, I could not afford to pay them when they became due.
    Not true. If one, or two small defaults appear on your credit file, but have been explained honestly upfront, that will go in your favour, especially if they show they’ve since been paid. You have shown honesty and integrity.

Are you ready to make an application to rent a property? Refer to the list below of what supporting documents are required (for each applicant) so you’re prepared for when you do.

  1. Proof of income (recent payslips, bank statements, tax return).
    If you’re on a pension, 4 recent Centrelink statements.
  2. Valid 100 Point ID (current passport, citizenship certificate, driver’s licence, Medicare card, utility bills, bank statements).
  3. Rent ledger from previous property management company.
  4. Pet references if the property is advertised as being pet friendly and you wish to have a pet.
    Read more about applying for pet friendly rental properties for further advice and tips
  5. Resume of your rental and employment history
  6. Personal references from previous landlord’s, property managers.

Apply To Rent – Tenancy Application

Natalie Salvati (Principal of Salvan Property Management) is a registered Real Estate Agent (RLA 276287) and as a property manager, has over 25 years experience looking after rental properties in Adelaide.

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