What questions will I be asked before I can see the property?
The real estate company will ask a fixed set of questions to determine if a tenant has the characteristics that the owner is looking for. This profile is used by the owner to select between tenants in order to minimize vacancies and loss. Typical questions would be:
- Are you represented by a real estate agent?
- When are you looking to rent?
- How long of a lease are you looking for?
- Do you have a rental history we can verify? Any issues?
- Do you have pets?
- How many adults will reside in the property?
- What is your credit like?
- Are you employed/have other income sources
- What is the total household income?
Why am I asked to confirm the showing on the day I am looking at the property?
Unfortunately, a high percentage of scheduled showings end up being no-shows. This may be due to people just forgetting or last minute things coming up. Regardless of the reason, Soldsense therefore requires a confirmation call on the day of the showing no later than 1 hour before the scheduled showing.
What information will you verify if I submit an application to rent?
We will verify your income, employment, credit and rental history.
How much money will I need upfront to rent a property?
When making the application you will need to pay a $40 application fee per adult. All adults (18 years and older) must fill out an application and must pay the $40 fee – no exceptions.
When the application is approved and a lease is signed, one month rent is due as an deposit. The deposit should be payable to Soldsense Realty LLC. This deposit will be credited towards your first months rent.
Prior to move in, the security deposit is also due (the pet deposit or pet fee will also be paid at this time if it applies.) If the payment is in a cashiers check, it can be brought at move-in when you receive the keys. If it is a personal check, it will have to reach us no later than 10 business days before the move-in.
What if I cannot document my income or have no income?
If you are self employed, tax returns will usually work. The owner do need a way to verify income to make sure you can pay the rent on a consistent basis. If you are living off savings only, proof of the bank balance may be needed.
What if I have bad credit?
Good credit is crucial to your application. Generally, a credit above 680 may be deemed sufficient. However, if you have recent or current outstanding late payments or judgments this may negatively impact your application regardless of credit score. Also, if your score is below 680 but the reason is e.g. a short sale or foreclosure – and your other lines of credit have been on time, the owner may still accept you. If you have bad credit or issues, we recommend you are upfront about it and run it by us ahead of time – that way we can speak to the owner to see if the credit is acceptable.
Regardless of credit – income/employment and rental history will also influence your desirability as a tenant.
What if I have a Section 8 housing voucher?
It is up to the individual owner if they will accept a section 8 tenant voucher or not. In Virginia landlords are permitted to discriminate based on the source of funds. If a landlord is accepting a section 8 voucher you will still need to qualify with income for your part of the voucher. Credit and rental history will also need to be verified and found sufficient for the owner.
Please be aware that we recommend our owners not pay utilities on behalf of the tenant. Hence, make sure your adjusted voucher is sufficient to cover the rent.
How far is the property from a metro or bus route?
Go to http://wmata.com and type in the property address and where you want to go. It will show you how to get to metro buses and stations.
How many roommates can I have?
Read our article on overcrowding. In Fairfax County the maximum number of unrelated persons in a single family dwelling is 4. The number of bedrooms and sizes will also limit the number of persons.
What about pets?
Pet restrictions are up to the individual owner and will vary from home to home. Some owners may limit the type of pet, the size of pet or the number of pets. If pets are allowed, the owner typically require a pet deposit or a pet fee. Keep in mind that the pet fee or pet deposit does not limit your liability for pet damage to those amounts.
Owners will rarely make accommodations for your pet – if the yard is not fenced and you have a dog they will not put up a fence. You may request permission to put one up – the owner may or may not approve.
Keep in mind that the county or local jurisdiction may have additional requirements for your pet – you will have to abide by all those rules. If the unit is in a condominium or homeowner association, additional restrictions on pet size, type and number of pets may exist.
Are there any other fees?
There will be other fees associated with your move. There may be move-in fees and car registration, pet and pool registration fees. Trash charges may be included or may not. You will also be responsible utilities as well as lawn care. Condominiums often include some utilities.
Are there move-in fees and can I move anytime I want?
Some communities will be have move-in fees and restricted move-in times and days. You would be responsible for any move-in and/or move-out fees. Condominiums in particular typically require you to schedule your move-in – the move-in times may be limited. You are responsible for scheduling this.
Will the property be fixed up before I move in?
The only guarantee for the property is that it will be cleaned. Sometimes the time between tenants is too short for cleaning to take place before you move in. We will then arrange for the cleaning to take place after you have moved in.
If you want the carpet changed or walls painted you will have to negotiate that as part of your lease. The best way is to attach a sheet with conditions to the rental application. All appliances and mechanical/plumbing/electrical systems will be delivered and kept in normal working order by the landlord as outlined in the lease (sometimes certain items are excluded.)