Can I Lease an Apartment After Filing for Bankruptcy?

Can I Lease an Apartment After Filing for Bankruptcy?

Residential News » Q & A with Dottie Herman | By Dottie Herman | April 27, 2015 9:56 AM ET

Q & A with Dottie Herman

Question: How difficult will it be for me to find an apartment if I had to declare bankruptcy last year?

Answer: The process can potentially be problematic for a renter who has filed a bankruptcy petition; however one of our experienced agents may be able to show properties where the landlord will be understanding. In this connection, the potential renter should be prepared with a few items:

1. A reference letter from their current landlord representing they are good tenants;
2. A creditworthy guarantor to co-sign in the event they default with their rent payments; and
3. Additional security or pre-paid rent.
Question: My boyfriend and I are relocating to NYC from LA. We are learning about the NYC market and are thinking about employing the help of an expert broker. If we do this, how much can we expect to pay in broker fees? Also, is it much more difficult to find a place on our own?

Answer: I'm glad to hear that you're moving to New York-this city is truly unlike any other in the world, and I hope you love it as much as I do. It's generally smart to engage a quality real estate professional to help you with your apartment search. You will learn not only about the various neighborhoods, but will also benefit from your professional's expertise in guiding you through the process, which may differ from those in your region.
If you are renting, in most cases, you will be responsible for paying the rental brokerage commission fee, which is customarily 15% of the first year's rent. If you are purchasing, the seller usually pays the brokerage commission.
Wishing you all the best in your move!
Question: What are the pros to hiring a real estate agent? My friend just sold her home herself, and she said it wasn't that challenging.

Selling a home for the highest and best price to a t qualified buyer, is, from our experience, generally quite challenging - particularly in today's market where credit is extremely tight. Hiring a Real Estate Professional should ensure casting the widest net so that you attract the most buyers, and from that pool, making sure they qualify for a mortgage if they are financing. In addition, the Real Estate agent should use their expertise in prepping your home for market and pricing it correctly so that your property sells quickly.
Question: We are looking to sell our home and move within the same area before school starts, as my child would need to switch elementary schools and she is starting in the fall. Is now the time to list our home? We waited until spring as they need to finish this school year in their current school. Is it possible to be in a new home by August/September? Any tips to make it a fast moving sale/purchase?

Now is usually an excellent time to list your home for sale. The Spring selling season this year is expected to be particularly strong, given the harsh Winter most of the country has experienced this year. Pent-up demand has resulted in low Inventory levels and homes that are priced correctly, are selling quickly. If you are working with a Real Estate Professional, their guidance in prepping your home for sale and pricing it correctly should help to expedite the selling process.

In terms of your purchase, if you have already begun your home search o- line, you can narrow down your parameters so that when you work with an Agent, you have a good idea of what location and home features you prefer. Timing is always hard to predict, but certainly you can negotiate Closing dates that work best for you.  Once you have identified your new purchase, do your best to schedule the Closing on your current home to coincide with your new home.
Question: I am getting my home ready for sale. Any tips before I put it on the market to make it show the best to the people that come to see it?

Answer: Spring is usually the best time to show your home at its best. Landscaping can play a big part in your presentation, so take pains to mow the lawn, and plant colorful flowers. In addition, outdoor paint, if needed, is helpful as well as cleaning out the Garage, Basement and getting your windows cleaned. De-cluttering your home and organizing your closets is another important step to making your home show-ready
Question: I have held multiple open houses for my house and basically no one shows up each time. It is listed with a local broker. Is the price wrong? Not advertised well? How do I get more people in my home?

Answer: The lack of activity at your Open Houses may be a combination of incorrect pricing and lack of marketing. A helpful first step is to go on-line to see the status of comparable listings in your area, determine the real estate experts selling them, and check the length of time on the market. After you have this information, schedule an appointment with your Real Estate Agent to discuss your findings and get their feedback. If you are not happy with the outcome of your conversation, you may decide to change representation.

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